Four Frenchmen, childhood friends, united in their love of synth music: dare we call it a tale of mystery and imagination, of friendship and self-discovery? Chateau Marmont’s story is half Stand By Me, half Solaris, half Logan’s Run and, yes, it doesn’t add up. They’ve known each other since forever, as children stranded in a hostile landscape dominated by hypertrophied bullies and pathetic louts. They found themselves and each other through synthetic music, so bright and remote in its promises of infinity and eternal bliss, so hard, cold and disturbing when its outlook turns dystopian. These boys come from a time when people still believed in the future. And their name is resonant not of faded glories, awkward suicides, scuffed gold stars and velvet-roped junkies, but of widescreen romance, vintage melancholia and studied postures.
Last year, Chateau Marmont released their debut EP, Solar Apex, to much acclaim. Since then, they’ve remixed La Roux, Heartsrevolution, Ladyhawke, Röyksopp (after Poney Poney, Koko Von Napoo, Midnight Juggernauts...)--and themselves for Chromeo’s DJ Kicks. Co-produced former-teenybopper-turned-synth-diva Alizée’s new album. Had a song on Kitsuné Maison 7. Toured quite a bit. And still found the time to write NIBIRU, a wonderful second offering.
NIBIRU displays the same elegance that made Solar Apex such a classy ride but this time, Chateau Marmont’s pop leanings seem more restrained, the overall tone more Kraftwerkian, the record more muscular. This one is less poppy and more dancey, if you will. “One Hundred Realities”, “Monodrama”, “Heliochrome”, “Nibiru”: four tracks chronicling the ever-fascinating relationship between man and analog gear, featuring elegiac melodies, ultra-layered synth work and dramatic drum machines.
Forthcoming: Nibiru remixed by Gavin Russom, Beautiful Swimmers, Gesaffelstein and Oneohtrix Point Never.