Steve Jobs and the Justice boys have three very important things in common. They make what they want to make and don’t owe you an explanation as to why it’s so awesome. Making something overtly complex seem overwhelmingly simple. And most importantly, they are both flawless brand managers. Jobs never looked like a corporate stooge when he unveiled one of his revolutionary products. And Gaspard Auge and Xavier de Rosnay certainly don’t look like Daft Punk with their mod throwback band tees and slick leather jackets; not to mention Auge’s legendary moustache — so 1976.
Speaking of that very year — when B.T.O. The Best of (So Far) and Blue Oyster Cult Agents of Fortune were the mandatory 8-tracks for any steamy backseat session — Audio, Video, Disco (might as well be Vini, Vidi, Vici) resurrects those bra-tossing Chevelle-smoking masses in an epic way. Take the title track and it’s killer video for instance. It’s astonishing that they breathed so much life into almost 100 percent digital toys. It’s essentially an Italian madrigal, or in this case Latin, which introduces a new layer of drum machine or heavy organ each time de Rosnay’s voice hops to another octave. It’s only fitting that they place their best track at the conclusion of the album. It’s an actual rock album in structure, not disjointed mashups by any stretch of the imagination.
“Newlands”, featuring the baritone pipes of Diamond Nights Morgan Phalen, is in every way an homage to the decadence and lust of a ‘78 KISS tour. Though this song is destined for the Heavy Metal soundtrack, it’s the song I wish was playing when Kelly LeBrock brought down the house in Weird Science. If you want something with a slightly less gravitas in the beginning but still climaxes at the perfect moment, “Helix” is urging you to “GET UP!!” — and you really won’t have much of a choice.
Ali Love drops in for “Civilization” which certainly has less of a vintage feel, but retains the highly polished electronic pop we’ve not exactly come to expect from them. Admittedly, their debut was “blatantly aggressive” and controversial to say the least. But this number exemplifies the easily accessible pop aesthetic they’re going for instead of the blaring avant garde of previous efforts.
I’d be sorely remiss not to mention the Vincent Vendetta’s (Midnight Juggernauts) vocal ecstasy wrought on “Ohio”. There’s no guitars or notable arena rock melodies, but it is by far the most club ready track off this album. Whether or not certain tracks evoke images of yesteryear, they all have this delightfully washed out overload on every synthesizer that borders on supersonic. Jet lag has never felt cooler.
Stream Justice'sAudio, Video, Disco in full here.