Release Date: Jan 20, 2017
Record label: Caroline International
We all know stereotyping is very wrong, but French electronica is the best electronica -- must be something in the water. Their way of working classy beats through earwormish pop hooks while walking a thin line between brilliant and tacky is almost a geographical trademark, and although different hues can be obviously found amongst the many French electronica artists, they all have a certain je-ne-sais-quoi that is immediately identifiable. Voyager is Pascal Arbez a.k.a.
Pascal Arbez-Nicolas has spent years trying to wriggle free of Vitalic’s 2001 breakthrough debut Poney EP. It still casts a long shadow; the chain-driven turbo-fluttering hiss of “La Rock 01” and the horror/euphoria grind of “Poney Part 1” were the early alley-oops to the monster jams of Ed Banger’s mid-’00s heyday. But after OK Cowboy fleshed out his geeked-out aggro electro-house and Flashmob let it grow even wilder, Rave Age revealed the limits of his overblown attack: sooner or later, like any powerful drug, all you get from ramping up the dosage is a baseline feel of familiar getting-by normality.
Vitalic 'Voyager' (Clivage/Caroline International)Nobody sane would question that Pascal Arbez-Nicolas knows how to make a banger. Way back around the turn of the millennium when the club scene was splintering, he came out with the likes of ‘Poney’ and ‘La Rock 01’, trampling the boundaries between electroclash, techno and disco, and causing major scenes wherever they were played. Now, a decade-and-a-half on, that ability hasn’t left him.