Parisian electronic disco is back and no, kids, it’s not the new Daft Punk album (you might have to wait another 10 years for that one). Back in July, French electronic duo Justice emerged from their incognito hiatus by announcing their new album Woman, with the lead track Safe and Sound a full-on 80s disco vibe featuring a bumping guitar bass and a beautiful bouquet of choir vocals. So far, so solid.
The duo’s third studio album employs an inventive, creative sound that brings listeners back to the glory days of Cross, eclipsed only by a heavily focused electronic-disco feel. Ironically enough, for an album called Woman it can be a bit ‘lads’ night out’ at times, but whether it’s the groovy guitar and catchy vocals in Fire or the calm and melodic tone in Close Call, there’s enough in here to reel in even the most casual of fans.
As much as Justice has once again showed us their spontaneity and bravado, they do still come up short in recreating a mega hit when attempting to feed our keenness to D.A.N.C.E. (achem). But maybe that’s not what they’re after this time, and maybe that’s what they’re rebelling against – or at least that would be a more convincing assumption if it wasn’t so conventional in structure. There’s still the keen loss of stadium-sized electro-rock, and it’s one that they can never quite replace.
It does have moments of freshness, though. The emphasis on disco synths is vibrant, lifting the more drab material to a new level, and while some new followers might be disappointed with the lack of a so-called hit – not to mention just a cursory reflection of any sort of dialogue around the album title – there’s still the reassurance that Justice are doing things their own way, carving their own path even if it means embracing the more jagged edges along the way.