By Karsten Walter (@karseatheadrest)
French indie-pop superstars Phoenix are releasing their new album Ti Amo next month, and have debuted its title track, alongside the previously released glitchy, upbeat J-Boy. The track gives fans a real eye-opener into the return of their renowned sound.
Ti Amo opens with a retro drum loop intro, that lays under the track throughout, eventually drowned out by the live drums, but still returning to hold the piece together. It’s a successful attempt from Phoenix to replicate the lively disco vibe that they’ve thrived off of for five albums now. If you’ve ever had a desire to hear Thomas Mars repeatedly tell you he loves you, then you’ve come to the right place with this track. As the band declared when releasing the track on their Facebook page, “Ti Amo” is a romantic song about the tragedy of unreciprocated love and desire. Their description fits it perfectly – it’s all about having fun, enjoying the little things in life (sipping Prosecco whilst listening to the Buzzcocks, seemingly) and loving each other. In various languages.
The addictive and pulsing chorus is irresistible as much as it is repetitive. The playful lyrics, the outgoing instrumental, it all feels like the soundtrack to a party with your best friends, and you won’t be judged to tap your feet to it, or be taken in by its exotic feel. It makes complete sense as to why the band described this album as a recall to the summer and Italian discos of their past.
While the track isn’t instinctively political or aiming to tackle any moral issues, it could easily be perceived that way. Phoenix aren’t exactly a radical band, but when they also entitled their announcement of the track’s release with the words “100% lover – 0% violence”, you have to think there might be a possibility the track is being released for a statement of some form. It may be to support and promote a form of unity, love, and multiculturalism among us with the various languages in it.
Maybe Thomas Mars is just really interested in furthering his modern language skills. Whatever the end message, the track oozes romance, positivity, and fun – and that’s probably the perfect way to describe this preview of their upcoming album.