Much to the delight of fans, Madeon has finally released his new album after numerous delays—his first new release since the release of “Shelter” with Porter Robinson in 2016, where he also embarked on a much-acclaimed world tour. It’s a characteristic that fans have gotten used to, as the French producer’s standards will not let anything go public unless it is absolutely perfect.
In his latest release, Madeon leaves behind most of the identity we saw in his debut album Adventure with a more soulful sound. The music from this album are definitely bops and extremely radio friendly, but I found a lot of the themes to be corny and a step down from his previous album. I just hoped that there was a bit more callback to the atmosphere and surrealism in Adventure, as that was what made him stand out in a packed genre. He has also gotten much more confident with his vocals as we hear him more frequently in this album, a welcoming trend as he had already demonstrated his strong singing previously.
A native of Nantes, France, Madeon’s real name is Hugo Pierre Leclercq, who began producing at the age of 11 under the alias of ‘DJ Daemon’—an anagram of his current name. He went viral as soon as he started, as his debut release of “Pop Culture”—a mashup of 39 pop songs, received millions of YouTube the moment it was uploaded. He would go on to release numerous singles before releasing his first album in Adventure, each work more complex than the one before.
Below are some of my favourite tracks from the album:
All of My Friends
Along with the groovy tunes of the opening track in “Dream, Dream, Dream,” the song that follows is an easy listen that sets the tone of the album. While it still contains Hugo’s signature complexity, the backstory and themes of most songs in this album are laid back and relaxed.
With synths that resemble Hugo’s work in Shelter and other earlier works, the smooth electro riffs and vocals make this track the must-listen of the album. It’s songs like these that I hope Madeon will re-explore his work from Adventure in the future.
A softer track where Hugo’s soulful vocals are on full display. It’s one of the songs on this album that shown how much his vocals have improved. I also love the production in this track, blending in classic nu-disco elements with vocal chops.
No Fear No More
Distorted vocals, funky piano riffs, and a mixture of heavy club and future bass beats are the main elements of this track. It’s another easy listen with a chorus being a fun sing-along.