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Alternative & Indie - Released September 24, 2013 | Record Makers

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Alternative & Indie - Released November 13, 2020 | Record Makers

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Sebastien Tellier is back with Simple Mind, an album made up of stripped back re-editions of his biggest tracks. This latest offering could easily have come straight out of the 80s with its abundance of CP80, clavinet and DX7 keyboards. Tellier’s vocal performances are unusual. Singing both in English and French with his signature French accent, the dark low rumble of his voice cuts through the tracks like sunlight on a foggy day. Opening with Domestic Tasks, ominous droning elements veer in and out of focus as a groovy, funk infused clavinet jams away in the background. Some would say that the version of Look on this album is somewhat lacking compared to the original. With the palm muted guitars and synth pads long gone, we instead get M83 Junk era sounds. We are greeted by a Yamaha DX7 laying the foundation before Tellier’s signature syncopated Yamaha CP80 piano joins the ensemble. Pitch shifted notes flutter in the width of the stereo field, creating a lush atmosphere that would be right at home in a melancholic 80s drama. Intromission speaks the language of Kyle Dixon and Michael Stein with a soft brass arpeggiated on a vintage synthesiser. But that’s as far as language goes, as the lyrics on this track don’t go beyond the word ‘ah’. This is perhaps slightly pretentious, but the beautifully sombre piano that comes in halfway through makes up for this. Stuck in the past, both in its production and rehashing of past works, Simple Mind is just that: simple. But simplicity is the key to great music! © Tom Oscar Adams/Qobuz
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House - Released February 25, 2008 | Record Makers

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Sebastien Tellier has, as the British music mags of the '70s used to put it, heavy friends: in his native France, he's signed to Air's boutique label, and this, his fourth album, was produced by Daft Punk's Guy-Manuel de Homem-Christo. Previous records have been intriguing and fitfully great mergings of modern French electronica and sophisticated chamber pop, but Sexuality is built almost entirely on the Air/Daft Punk model of vintage synthesizer sounds melded to canny pop songwriting. Unfortunately, it hews so closely to that concept that most of Tellier's own personality is lost. Nominally a concept album concerning the titular topic, Sexuality is too chilly and cerebral to be particularly erotic: even on "Pomme," the requisite homage to Serge Gainsbourg's sleaze pop epic "Je T'Aime, Moi Non Plus," the anonymous female moans in the background are curiously overt in their utter fakeness. There are some very good tracks here: the light-hearted "Divine" is a brilliant homage to early-'80s synth pop built on sampled voice fragments (like most of Trevor Horn's productions for the Art of Noise, Yes, and others circa 1984) and featuring the album's most immediately arresting melody. The Art of Noise comparison is even more apparent later, on the languid "Manty," which is built on loops of wordless female harmonies and a woman's fetching giggle that make it sound like a close cousin of the epic "Moments in Love." Elsewhere, the album's first single, the seven-minute instrumental "Sexual Sportswear," sounds like Air's take on vintage '70s synthesizer records like Jean-Michel Jarre's Oxygene, and is as curiously irresistible as that description suggests, and the equally retro clavinet sound that drives the hushed closer "L'Amour et la Violence" is pretty swell too. But too much of Sexuality consists of rote dance-pop songs like "Kilometre" and the utterly average slow jams "Elle" and "Une Heure,": pleasant enough tracks, but with little of the wit and invention of Tellier's best work. © Stewart Mason /TiVo
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Pop - Released January 1, 2004 | Record Makers

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House - Released May 27, 2016 | Record Makers

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House - Released April 1, 2013 | Record Makers

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Pop - Released January 2, 2001 | Record Makers

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Electronic - Released May 29, 2020 | Record makers

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French Music - Released January 20, 2006 | Record Makers

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Film Soundtracks - Released October 13, 2017 | Record Makers

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Film Soundtracks - Released November 9, 2007 | Record Makers

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House - Released April 9, 2010 | Record Makers

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Alternative & Indie - Released February 22, 2021 | Record Makers

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House - Released May 23, 2008 | Record Makers

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House - Released July 31, 2009 | Record Makers

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House - Released December 12, 2008 | Record Makers

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Alternative & Indie - Released November 4, 2020 | Record Makers

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Electronic - Released July 14, 2014 | Record makers

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Film Soundtracks - Released February 26, 2016 | Record Makers

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House - Released April 9, 2012 | Record Makers

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Sébastien Tellier in the magazine
  • The 80s are back in fashion! Sebastien Tellier
    The 80s are back in fashion! Sebastien Tellier Sebastien Tellier is back with Simple Mind, an album made up of stripped back re-editions of his biggest tracks. This latest offering could easily have come straight out of the 80s with its abundance of CP-80, Clavinet and DX7 keyboards. Tellier’s vocal performances are unusual. Singing both in E...