M83’s new album Junk, released April 8, sounds like it was brought here on Marty Mcfly’s DeLorean straight from 1985. It’s hard to listen to it without imagining a row of high schoolers donning shoulder pads and Flock of Seagulls haircuts heading to senior prom. While the overly-produced 1980s nostalgia can get monotonous at points, the album is packed full of poppy drum kits, funky guitars, and sweat-soaked sax solos that make Junk ready for nights that end too early and mornings that come too soon.
The album begins with the single “Do It, Try It.” Undeniably the hardest hitting song of the bunch, it plays like a Jamie XX song with a sense of humor. Like most of the songs on Junk, the song’s appeal lies in its ability to be highly danceable, yet too over-the-top to be taken too seriously.
The last third of Junk takes a slight step back from the spacey funk grooves that dominate the rest of the album and mellows into a few ballads. Some of the hidden gems in this section include “Atlantique Sud,” a slow string heavy song sung entirely in French, and album-closer “Sunday Night 1987” which acts as a somber ending to the mostly high-energy album.
A departure from M83’s last release You And The Night, a piano and string-heavy album for quiet nights, Junk is the band’s attempt at making club-friendly danceable music. Although the nostalgia- filled beats get a bit monotonous at times, the album is certainly worth a few listens before heading out on a Saturday night.