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A review of...

Woman by Justice

Date: 
November 18, 2016
Writer: 
Peter Rokeby
7.0

The gist

French duo find their funk

The music

Justice return with Woman, their first new album in 5 long years. Their last album Audio, Video, Disco was itself a transformation for the band, going from the dark underground electro of † to full on stadium pomp. Here they keep some of the pomp but scale back the proggy elements and bring in some more soul, disco & funk. These inspirations seem to range from Giorgio Morodor ("Alakazam!") to The Love Unlimited Orchestra ("Safe and Sound"). Even "Heavy Metal" seems like just an ironic title.

The album opens with "Safe and Sound", a glimmering glitter-ball of a tune, led by a John Taylor-esque bassline and some joyful disco-funk strings. It's just about as accessible an opener as you're likely to hear on any album this year. From here the band stick with their upbeat, soulful new sound for most of the record, whilst slipping in some unexpected departures, like the harder-edge, cinematic sounding "Chorus" or the darkly mysterious album closer "Close Call", which utilises some bare bones keyboard and ghostly vocals to wonderful effect.

Justice are perhaps known as France's other mysterious electro duo, but on the back of this and their other two records, they should really be promoted to THE mysterious French duo.
 
Listen to

"Alakazam!" - Moroder and Sparks influences combine on this pulsing behemoth of repetition and big fat riffs.