No. 1: M83 -- Saturdays=Youth


Anthony Gonzalez of M83

What got you interested in electronic music?
I listened to a lot of German music from the '70s, like the Kraftwerk movement and Tangerine Dream, and because of this style of music, I started to play keyboards. I have always been a huge fan of ambient music.

Was Saturdays=Youth any homage to your own teenage years when you got into this kind of music?
This album is definitely dedicated to my teenage years, they were one of my best periods of life so far. I have lots of good memories about it, and I have always been fascinated by youth and teenagers. I am 27, and I am what I was when I was 15, so...

What were you like as a teenager?
I was like really shy and really quiet. I was skateboarding a lot. I was always making music or having fun with my friends. I guess I was, like, cool? I don’t know! And, also, the other big influence for me for this album was the '80s music. I really love '80s music because of the sound of the records. They sound really, really nice—the sound of the production is really clear, and very soft but very powerful as well. Some of the songs from the '80s are really moving, and really emotional.

What are the differences between electronic music that was made in the '80s and what is made now? Do people still approach it the same way?
I don't really think so. In the '80s, there was a lot to explore. Nowadays, it is really difficult to be yourself and have your own sound, because a lot of things have been done before. It has become more and more difficult to prove your identity. But it is also more easy, because just with a computer, you can make an album. Everybody can make an album, and that's just really exciting.

What advice would you give to teenagers?
Oh...just take a lot of drugs. And have fun a lot, because it's very short. It's good to experiment when you're a teenager. That's what I did.

What was the best show that you played?
It was really funny—in Minneapolis, actually. The audience was really crazy. One naked kid came on the stage and he was totally drunk and he danced to the music for the last couple of songs. It was really funny. We just let him stay up there.

What was the best show you went to?
Midnight Juggernauts, they are one of my favorite bands on stage. They're really good to see live. The sound live is much more beautiful. I think they were made to be on stage.

What was your favorite album from 2008?
This year, I was listening a lot to the Chairlift album. Also, I really loved School of Seven Bells, and also the Fleet Foxes album was really good. I think it was a really good year for music—a lot of good records and a lot of good bands.

Best old band/artist that was still going in 2008?
I really liked the Portishead album, and also the Radiohead album.

What moment from 2008 (personal or historical) will you always remember?
I don't know, it's more like it has been a really good year for me overall. It's just like the whole year was just excellent for me.