By Nate "Igor" Smith
By Abel Folgar
By Kat Bein
By Jacob Katel
By Karli Evans
By Jose D. Duran
By Pablo Chacon Alvarez
In terms of bleep-bloop music, few do it better than the French. Over the past decade, Pedro Winter's Paris-based Ed Banger Records has dropped some of house music's dopest seven- and 12-inches, CDs, and MP3s. Celebrated as one of electronic music's most prominent labels, the Winter's family of artists is both extensive and impressive, including DJs SebastiAn, Mr. Orzio, and Miami-born Uffie, as well as Krazy Baldhead, Cassius, and the late DJ Mehdi.
However, Banger's biggest stars (commercially, at least) are Gaspard Augé and Xavier de Rosnay, the French house heads internationally known as Justice. They broke onto the scene in 2007 with critically acclaimed debut † and breakthrough hit "D.A.N.C.E.," prompting Rolling Stone to describe them as "new-jacques swing" techno punks who "go straight for the jugular" with "loads of melodrama and not a moment of subtlety."
It took the duo four years to release a follow-up record, Audio, Video, Disco, which dropped in October 2011. And while the new album is more delicate than †, it's also "emotionally heavy," as de Rosnay told Exclaim magazine, "without being aggressive.
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"It's a disco opera," he said. "We tried to make this record not too groovy, but with really simple movements. We were still aiming at making the same kind of opera record, but just [according to] what we think is the pop music of today. When we made this record, we wanted to create something very laid-back and a bit countryside-ish. You know, daytime music."
But Audio, Video, Disco is anything but daytime-exclusive. And this year, Justice will coheadline Ultra Music Festival Saturday night, rounding out a group of EDM heavy hitters including Avicii, Duck Sauce, and Fatboy Slim. So despite what de Rosnay has said, Justice works well at all hours.