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Do you still have a Corey Haim poster on your bedroom wall? Have you completed the Rubik’s Cube? Just can’t part with those leg warmers? Feeling cinematically lost without any hope of a new John Hughes film? Calm down, Principles of Geometry’s Meanstream will help you get through your 80’s withdrawal.
Meanstream is the fourth full-length album from French duo Jeremy Duval and Guillaume Grosso. True to Electronic Music form, the duo ambiguously refers to themselves as J & G. The two met in a recording studio while both working as sound engineers. Since then they have been creating heavy synthesized sounds and captivating grooves.
Meanstream particularly has an impossible to ignore 80’s motif. Some sounds feel like they are directly yanked out of an 80’s film soundtrack. Principles of Geometry’s greatest quality is their ability to create a strong retro style, while crafting their music with a modern technique. This wily fusion makes listeners feel transported without over saturation of antiquated tones or crappy drum machines. Some sounds on Meanstream have a warped or grainy tone to them as if they were created from old synthesizers, but therein lies the genius in them. In an age where we’re constantly trying to craft a better and better quality of sound, Meanstream purposely takes another road. Meanstream will drag you out just far enough to know you’re in some kind of time warp, but will eventually ground you with the contemporary.
Meanstream is crafted almost cinematically. The opening track is a prologue, beginning with ambient sounds and distant electronic drums. The track is accompanied by a woman’s voice describing an opening scene in a film….very Terminator 2: Judgment Day. Nonetheless, the album begins to set a tone for the listener. Yes, the cheese factor is there, but Meanstream doesn’t take itself too seriously. One notable track on the album is Streamsters. The track is constructed as a legitimate song, not just a moving electronic soundscape. There is falsetto singing and an almost tropical vibe. Pretty much Don Johnson in a full white suit.
If you’re looking for something a bit more ambient and emotional, Roanoke is the track for you. This track in particular sounds most like it’s the backing track for an angsty teen 80’s movie, but still, very cool. The track Polysex is closer to EDM as we know it today, but it does mess with snippets of sampled sounds that make predicting the next move impossible. There are many themes to this track. The slow groove and layered vocals create a synthesized R&B feel. Another shining moment of the album is Runner. What makes this track special is how it’s composed. It has a slow tempo with vintage sounds, but the meter of the song erratically changes throughout. It appears as though the song suddenly speeds up without warning, yet the tempo stays the same for the entirety of the song. This entire album is very 80’s, but Runner is as 80’s as it gets. Naturally, the album closes with an epilogue, letting you know that this artistically crafted sound experience has concluded.
I recommend Meanstream for the EDM lover who wants something a little different. When a constant, immovable bass beat and the ever-predictable “drop” just doesn’t do it for you anymore, take a listen to Principles of Geometry.
1. Prologue 1:53
2. Lonnie 5:07
3. Streamsters 3:47
4. Dogod 4:18
5. Videostore 3:45
6. Roanoke 4:16
7. Suntunnel 4:43
8. Polysex 4:42
9. Runner 6:15
10. Epilogue 3:59