Song 250: M83, “Kim & Jessie” (2008)


M83 makes music that sounds like the past, but it never sounds like a blatant nostalgia trip. It just sounds like memory, like past car trips and ice cream runs at dusk. I’m not sure how that works. Is it the synths that do it? The larger-than-life drums? The faraway vocals? Or does this simply sound like a song from a past recent enough for me to vaguely remember?

“Kim & Jessie” in particular reminds me of youth and memories. Something about that synth line just sounds like the past, and not even because it recalls the ’80s. It just is the sound of nostalgia. Again, I have no idea how that works, but M83 mastermind Anthony Gonzales apparently does. (The fact that Saturdays=Youth was produced by former Cocteau Twins producer Ken Thomas doesn’t hurt.)

The band also has an amazing ability to create space; every song sounds like it contains landscapes, and each song has its own geography. On “Kim and Jessie,” that geography covers high hills and low valleys. (Or, if you’re going by the video, the high and low points of a skate ramp.)


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