Being approached by Stereolab fan and filmmaker Marc Fitoussi to create the music for his new movie, La Vie D'Artiste, gave Tim Gane and his High Llamas sidekick Sean O'Hagan the perfect excuse to indulge their wildest French soundtrack fantasies.
It was clearly the gently flowing melancholic strings + electronics formula favoured by François de Roubaix that provided the main inspiration -- not that there's anything wrong with that. It's definitely not a Stereolab album, so anyone expecting hyperactive, pulsating Moog-enhanced groovers will be in for a disappointment, although the loungey Jean-Jacques Perrey homage Champagne! could work on the dance floor.
The arrangements are lovely nonetheless, and if you enjoy Stereolab's lighter, easy-listening side, you'll find lots here to love. The UK release comes with a second disc of recordings made by Gane and O'Hagan that weren't right for the film, but of course you need to hear them anyway.