Oxygène (2015 Remastered) Jean Michel Jarre

Album info



Label: Sony Music CG

Genre: Electronic

Subgenre: Experimental

Artist: Jean Michel Jarre

Composer: Jean Michel Jarre

Album including Album cover

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  • 1Oxygène Part 107:40
  • 2Oxygène Part 207:46
  • 3Oxygène Part 303:17
  • 4Oxygène Part 404:07
  • 5Oxygène Part 510:15
  • 6Oxygène Part 606:37
  • Total Runtime39:42

Info for Oxygène (2015 Remastered)

With his first album, Oxygene, Jean Michel Jarre gave his soul to electronic music, creating several series of unforgettable melodies. The most well-known theme, ‘Oxygène 4’ went viral around the world, becoming so famous that many programmes began using it as a jingle or a theme. Jean Michel Jarre became an international star, selling more than 12 million copies of this album. It is essential as well as a cult classic!

Jean Michel Jarre is the son of the great film composer Maurice Jarre. After releasing work in films, theatre, and commercials, it was Oxygene that would prove to be his breakthrough, an unprecedented success for French popular music in the 1970s. Riding the heat of the era where progressive music thrived, it reached #2 on the British charts at the time of its release, and has since gone on to sell more than 15 million copies internationally. Jarre's keyboard weaponry consists of ARP, EMI synthi AKS, VCS3, and RMI Harmonic synthesizers, mellotron, Farfisa and Eminent organs, as well as a credited 'Rhythmin' computer' (i.e., Korg rhythm machine).

The composition is split into six parts, lending it a further 'symphonic' sensibility in its form. 'Part I' represents a prelude and sets the mood of much of the remainder of the album. One almost thinks of Pink Floyd's 'Shine On You Crazy Diamond' if situated underwater: a plush bed of funereal strings in G minor with synthesizer effects jetting upward like air bubbles escaping from a breathing hose. A mournful synth taking up the main melody wails and whistles, before bass-register and brass synths gradually emerge. With the shift to 'Part II,' a 6/8 rhythm line enters, building to a shuffle. Here, the main melody is more animated and Jarre fills in the space of minor-key strings by coaxing additional effects out of the synths including lasers and tunneling echoes, though overall the relaxed atmosphere is sustained. 'Part III,' in C minor, is a solemn march with the whistling synthesizer returning.

'Part IV' is the most well-known theme of the album. Continuing in C minor, again with a shuffling 6/8 gait, the melody is astonishingly simple but effective, planting itself into the listener's head very quickly. This was released as a single, and also made into a charming video consisting entirely of penguins waddling along to the music. 'Part V' is actually comprised of two sections. The first half is given to a dreamlike, airy ambient section that represents the first appearance of a major key tonality. To me, this section presages similar work the following year of David Bowie and Brian Eno on Low (e.g., compare this with the opening seconds of 'Another Career in a New Town,' or the solemnity of mood found in 'Warszawa'). This, however, dissolves into a slightly darker segment with a sequenced bass pattern, more akin to Tangerine Dream from the same period. 'Part VI' is the 'cool down' portion of the album, with an easing Latin beat and synthesizers surging and phasing like waves on the beach.

Considered to be one of the key albums in making 1970s electronic music popular, the recording and sound quality of this one holds up very well, and the six sections complement each other well in form and fit. Oxygene is more accessible than the output of Jarre's peers in the electronic music instrumental genre were typically releasing, and indeed is one of those albums where all of the music could be easily absorbed in just one sitting without tiring the listener out, while still retaining enough interest to warrant repeated returns. Highly recommended, especially to analog synth lovers. (www.progreviews.com)

Jean Michel Jarre, synthesizers, Farfisa organ, mellotron, Eminent-310 Unique organ, Korg Minipops-7 rhythm machine

Digitally remastered.

Jean Michel Jarre
Multifaceted artist, not only recording artist, creator and performer of unique outdoor concerts, Jean Michel Jarre is also composer and lyricist of mile-stone hits in his native France and composer of international movie soundtracks. He is also the first composer to introduce electronic music into the sanctuary of the Paris Opera House, with the ballet AOR in 1971. Between 1968 and 1972, after having worked with Pierre Schaeffer in the GRM (Group for Musical Research), he also composes and produces a series of electronic music pieces like The Cage, Deserted Palace…

In 1972, he composes the signature music for the International Festival of Magic. During 1973-74 he composes and/or writes the lyrics for, and artistically produces, major French talent, Françoise Hardy, Gérard Lenorman and Christophe’s two key albums, Les Paradis Perdus and Les Mots Bleus.

He also signs the staging and direction of Christophe’s two concerts at the Olympia Theatre, in Paris. 1974-75 brings him to Los Angeles where he writes and produces two albums for Patrick Juvet, Mort ou Vif (« l’Enfant aux Cheveux Blancs », « Faut pas rêver ») and Paris by Night (« Où sont les femmes ? »). He works with Herbie Hanckock’s musicians and Ray Parker Junior.

Concerning his work on movie soundtracks, in 1972 he composes the original soundtrack for Jean Chapot’s Les Granges Brûlées starring Alain Delon and Simone Signoret and in 1978 Peter Fleischmann’s The Sickness of Hamburg.

Peter Weir asks him in 1979 to score Gallipoli, starring the debut actor Mel Gibson. In 1986 he contributes to Nine and a half weeks by Adrian Lyne starring Kim Basinger and Mickey Rourke. In 2001, Jarre composes the original soundtrack for Qui veut devenir une star, the first feature film of young debut director Patrice Pooyard.

Jean Michel Jarre has also signed the music for a 1992 documentary-film directed by Jacques-Yves Cousteau, Palawan.

During 2001, he was commissioned by Match Télévision to create the sound design of the cable channel, and by Bang & Olufsen for the visual and sound design of their B & O Concept Store on the Champs-Elysées in Paris.

In the realm of visual arts, Jean Michel Jarre has also staged several video installations, the latest of them being presented in Avignon in 2000 for the Millennium exhibition on the theme of Beauty.

Apart from his activities directly linked to musical composition, Jean Michel Jarre is spokesperson for IFPI and has headed successfully the lobby for Internet copyright legislation before the European Parliament.

Jean Michel Jarre is also UNESCO spokesperson and Ambassador contributing to the awareness of two key UN projects “Water for Life” and “Education for all”. Further information about Jean Michel Jarre you will find on his homepage.

This album contains no booklet.

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