Friday, December 30, 2011

The Top 100 Songs of 2011 -- #23: "Civilization" -- Justice

Had it not been for M83's Hurry Up, We're Dreaming, Justice's Audio, Video, Disco may have been the most epic electronic release of 2011. This is something we've come to expect from the French duo, whose 2007 debut featured a big guitar sound piled atop its synths.

On Audio, Video, Disco, Justice rises to the occasion yet again, with just as much synths, guitar and electronic strings as before. The album picks up where Cross left off, evidenced with lead track "Horsepower." For fans of the duo, things couldn't have gone any better.

"Civilization" drops in after "Horsepower" as the album's second song, and its first with vocals. Ali Love, whose claim to fame prior to now was singing the vocal on The Chemical Brothers' "Do It Again," provides a robotic (in sound, not in terms of an inability to change pitches!) lead vocal against screeching electronic sounds and video game-esque synth work.

It's yet another song that would do well on a dance floor, but not because it's dumb club fare that has no other use other than to get the crowd moving. "Civilization" simply has such a rhythm and feel to it that dancing is basically encouraged. It's a disco tune updated for the 2000s, with '80s vocals thrown in for good measure.

Elsewhere on the record, Justice show why their mastery of combining synths, strings and guitar was feverishly missed for the past four years. Welcome back indeed.

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