On Moon Safari, Air's premiere American release, fans and critics alike were conquered by the bands signature style of cheese. While some accused the The French avant-pop band of playing nothing higher than musac, fans like myself found an enjoyable record that only sounded better with each spin. Their unanimous popularity among the indie scene probably would have scared me away had the songs not been so infectious.

First it should be stated that The Virgin Suicides is a soundtrack. It is fully-equiped with the repetition of themes and spoken word segments that are to be expected on a soundtrack. With the exception of the last track "Suicide Underground," the spoken word pieces work musically, adding to the overall flavor of the disc and the repetitions help to make the CD more cohesive.

The Virgin Suicides has a very Sixties feel to it and is very reminiscent of early Pink Floyd (AKA The Pink Floyd). The general gloominess, the retro-organs, and the atmospheric choral arrangements bring to mind the instrumental psychedelia of the sixties. As is to be expected with Air, everything seems tongue and cheek, but they are too passionate about making music to merely satirize or mock their influences. Each track finds a nice balance between kitsch and sincerity.

The opening song, "Playground Love" features Gordon Tracks on vocals and is the only song on the disk that is not an instrumental. In my mind, this was a good decision. Air seem more at home writing instrumentals and their vocal numbers have always been a distraction to what they do best.

With the exception of the last track whose spoken word segment is nothing less than obnoxious, this is a solid disk from start to finish. This is definitely a departure from the Eighties-flavored Moon Safari, but Air fans will not be disappointed.

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