Review Summary: Soon, my friend.
After ten years and six proper full-lengths Anothony Gonzalez has finally reached the apex of childlike wonder via sweeping emotional landscapes of reverberated electronic post-rock. Granted few other artists have tried as hard as he has to capture the essence of innocence with grandiose dramatics but with his sixth album as M83 Gonzalez has truly reached his goal. The inner beatings of Hurry Up, We’re Dreaming are that of the children chosen to adorn the album’s cover. Clad in costume patiently (though not pleasantly) awaiting their break from the mundane and adventure into fantasy. They are not simply sitting around begrudgingly waiting for time to pass by, they are looking to you, the listener, to quit the procrastination and give into the elegant escape that is M83’s newest record. Gonzalez breathes life into these children through blaring guitars, crashing drums, glistening synthesizers and a ***ing spot-on track about becoming a frog.
Once Nicolas Fromageau parted ways with Gonzalez in the wake of the well-deserved critical acclaim and globe-spanning tour schedule for their sophomore release Dead Cities, Red Seas and Lost Ghosts (2003) M83 took a very distinct turn. In the form of graduated focus, especially in regards to conventionalizing the song-structure--M83 oddly became a pop act. Not that Gonzalez never had it in him, even with their supremely synthetic self-titled debut he displayed a talent for boiling up some heat for Fromageau’s more mellow tones. Hurry Up, We’re Dreaming in comparison is a wildfire to a convection oven. Unlike 2008’s slightly misguided albeit giddily rewarding Saturdays=Youth Gonzalez does not cop out at his exploration of our formative years. Digging past those awkward teenage days aiming square at pure childhood enthusiasm and exploding on contact; the albums two discs, great individually or coupled, explore depths of innocence and honest amazement few have achieve without sounding innately childish. This is big, bombastic music, as panoramic as anything M83 has created before, maybe even more so, yet Gonzalez is able to ground himself in the realms of honest imagination, unabashed merriment and blissful ignorance. Yet not in the sense of the moronic but the unknown; he approaches his music as a child excited to learn.
In a sense M83 has fully matured in realizing their full potential to act like children. Gonzalez has at this point for many exhausted the argument of: “Is he better off without Fromageau"” As Nicolas is doing decently for himself with his new act Team Ghost the discussion’s outcome seems moot. Gonzalez from album to album adopts a different persona; rarely taking the time to harp on it (save a few interviews here and there) he is able to undercut the fact by simply producing excellent material. Even as I sit here and gush about how well this recently thirty year-old man is able to transport himself (and more importantly you) to a bubbly time of careless fancy-free the music is extremely well arranged. At twenty-two tracks the multi-instrumentalist constructs a flowing epic, intertwined in webs of cavernous synths and cascading drums. As a single piece Hurry Up, We’re Dreaming works excellently and if you feel the need to cut it up “Intro,” “Midnight City,” “OK Pal,” “Raconte-Moi Une Histoire,” “Year One, One UFO” and “Steve McQueen” are just a small collection of standouts from a record that seems limitless in its ability to excite and entrance. Which really is the purveying essence of Hurry Up, We’re Dreaming: to keep you enticed by simple enjoyment, just like playing tag as a child, innocent, pointless fun--brought to you by way of exceptional synth lines and one artist’s infinite imagination.