Jean Philippe Benadjer (guitars/bass/vocals), Sebastien Bournier (drums/vocals) and Paul J. No (keyboards/vocals) are Lunear. The band released Many Miles Away. It only takes a couple of seconds for me to realize the band is going to be trying to achieve an epic sound.
The opening track “Closed Doors” sounds a bit like something you might hear from M83. The synths create a cosmic atmosphere that attempts to put you in a state of wonder. It doesn't take long for a more straightforward rock band to emerge that produces a much more driving energy. with roots in the ’80s and ’90s.
“In Between” revolves around elements like piano and acoustic guitar. It starts off with a catchy vocal melody and unfolds as it progresses with more elements like distorted lead guitar. Up next is the lush and contemplative “A Last Time for Everything.” It starts with a lone acoustic guitar and vocals. The lyrics basically revolve around a broad philosophical idea that all things must pass. There are some hints of bands like AIR as well as Pink Floyd.
“Just Another Song About That Girl” is a catchy single worthy song. It feels a little more earthbound in some way but the band can’t seem to help themselves from going into epic territory. Up next is “Heaven?” I actually thought the lyrics were really funny. He sings, “But Heaven is for eternity / And eternity is quite long / So how long before you get bored? / Yes, how long before you get bored? / Bored of your favorite music / Bored of your favorite TV show.” I mean the idea of getting to heaven and everyone is just bored in a normal earthly human way hoping to find a new TV show to watch could easily be in a sketch show.
“Don't Be Scared” is a slow ballad about overcoming fear although there is a cool transition around the three-minute mark you don’t want to miss. “So... Many…” is a contemplative ballad while “Conflagration” has a distinct ’80’s flavor with arpeggiated synths. “You Owe Me Nothing” goes into epic territory once again. They end with the atmospheric and melancholy “Many Miles Away.”
These sort of albums which try to sum up all of life's big questions aren’t easy to pull off. There are only a couple of albums like The Dark Side of the Moon by Pink Floyd and OK Computer by Radiohead which seem to pull it off in a way that feels accessible. Even with these albums I feel like I need to be in a special kind of mood for them.
I applaud Lunear for attempting such grand ideas and concepts. The high quality production does a lot to match the aesthetic the band is going for. Suffice it to say if you find yourself contemplating the cosmos and all the mysteries of life there is a good chance you will appreciate, possibly love, this album.
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