The Virgin Suicides Score
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The Virgin Suicides (Deluxe Version - 15th Anniversary)
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AIR THE VIRGIN SUICIDES (SOUNDTRACK)
Air's debut, Moon Safari, solidified the French duo's position among fickle electronica music fans and earned them critical accolades throughout the press. Yet one of their most important fans turned out to be Sofia Coppola (daughter of Francis Ford), who, inspired by their moody ambiance, asked them to write the soundtrack for her directorial debut. The Virgin Suicides--adapted from the novel by Jeffrey Eugenides about the Lisbon sisters and their quest for answers in a turbulent American adolescence--includes stars such as Kirsten Dunst and Kathleen Turner, and Air make a deeply impressionistic subliminal appearance as well. Gordon Tracks sings the lush and romantic "Playground Love"; the rest is a throbbing score of somber synths and thick washes of modest psychedelic touches that recall the tranquil buzz that comes from too much staring at the lava lamp. The only complaint is that this 13-track album is only 40 minutes long; some of the cuts should have been longer. The meditative quality practically demands it. --Rob O'Connor
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Key to the gloomy and melancholy textures that color much of the album is the use of keyboard instruments characteristic of progressive rock and some psychedelic rock including synthesizers, e.g., Solina string synthesizer and the mini-moog, along with the electro-mechanical mellotron (with string setting), which injects a bittersweet mood - I have to say that this album presents some of the finest mellotron playing I have heard since I first listened to the In the Court of the Crimson King LP (King Crimson, 1969). Other keyboards used include an acoustic piano, the Fender Rhodes electric piano and the Hammond organ - at times, the guys use the Hammond as an (understated) surrogate pipe organ and the effect is very nice. Hard-edged guitar work is completely absent and the guitarist uses either acoustic guitar or a clean-toned electric. Overall, this music is very contemplative and dreamy.
In addition to these instruments, the use of an excellent drummer on a few tracks (Brian Reitzell) and a bass guitar really add to the rock element. Although over 90% of this album is instrumental, the first track features vocals and there are spoken word pieces here and there, including an electronically modified narration on the last track that provides a reflection on the suicides. Although I have to admit that the last track is a bit over the top, the dramatic effect is still pretty cool.
The thirteen tracks on the album range in length from 1:30 to 6:12, with the total playing time equaling 40:29. In that most of the tracks present the same central minor key melody (albeit in very different ways) the individual tracks on the album could be said to present "variations on a theme". As such, continuity is provided by a common melodic thread in spite of the pause between tracks and my interest was maintained throughout. The mood is also uniformly melancholy, which is heightened through the use of the mellotron.
All in all, this is a fine album and is highly recommended to those folks that enjoy 1970s psychedelic rock, progressive rock and electronica yet are looking for something newer.
Quality is top notch, sounds immaculate, and the posters are HUGE.
A must have, I can't stress this enough.
Sort of like 10,000 hertz legend, this album has the dark undertones which are just SO not "moon safari." However, if you can get yourself into the brooding tone, you can really enjoy the haunting, melodious tracks which were the background for five beautiful girls killing themselves.
In all seriousness, Air fans will appreciate this. People who have only listened to Moon Safari might be taken a bit aback by this, but the same could be said for 10khz legend, which was superb.
A half star taken off for not being as good as 10khz legend, and another half star taken off for being rather short.
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However...this set offers nothing new for fans, unless you didn't already have the live performance.Read more