Jean-Michel Jarre’s ‘Electronica 1’ Traces 60 Years Of Electronic Music


Jean-Michel Jarre today released his first album in eight years, Electronica 1: The Time Machine.

The album is the first half of a double-album of collaborations with other electronic music artists, with the second half set for release the spring of 2016.

The project was conceived with Jarre’s desire to explore the history of electronic music in his lifetime, with the participation of electronic music artists of different generations.

Here’s the Jarre’s album trailer for Electronica 1: The Time Machine:

Jarre called on 30 collaborators for the two-part release. The first installment, Electronica 1: The Time Machine, features an eclectic line-up that includes:

  • M83’s Anthony Gonzalez (“Glory”)
  • Air (“Close Your Eyes”)
  • Gesaffelstein (“Conquistador”)
  • The Who’s Pete Townshend (“Travelator Part 1”)
  • Depeche Mode/Erasure’s Vince Clarke (“Automatic Part 1-2”)
  • Little Boots’ Victoria Hesketh (“If…!”)
  • Massive Attack’s 3D (“Watching You”)
  • Fuck Buttons (“Immortals”)
  • Moby (“Suns Have Gone”)
  • Laurie Anderson (“Rely on Me”)
  • Dutch producer Armin van Buuren (“Stardust”)
  • German forerunners Tangerine Dream (“Zero Gravity”)
  • Boys Noize (“The Time Machine”)
  • John Carpenter (“A Question of Blood”)
    Cassical pianist Lang Lang (“The Train and the River”)

Jarre has released a series of short videos that look at the making of the tracks. The latest covers his collaboration with Air:

Here’s a playlist that includes the previous videos in his ‘Track Story’ series:

Electronica 1 is a two volume project with 30 collaborators in total.

Electronica 1: The Time Machine is out now in North America on Ultra Music. It’s available via Amazon, iTunes or Jarre’s siteElectronica 2 will follow in spring 2016.

24 thoughts on “Jean-Michel Jarre’s ‘Electronica 1’ Traces 60 Years Of Electronic Music

  1. I can not wait for this album! It looks like my favorite tack will be “A Question of Blood” followed by “Suns Have Gone”.
    JM Jarre has just collaborated with some amazing musicians (like himself). Awesome!



    “whenever I met with someone I came with a demo I did systematically in the function of the person I wanted to work with.

    For instance, I composed something to approach Moby by thinking about Moby’s world.
    To approach Massive Attack I composed something thinking of Massive Attack’s world.

    I thought, “What is the touch of this artist?” 

  3. Waiting for 2nd part for Gary Numan and Hans Zimmer collaboration. And some personal hopes for JMJ collaborating with Vangelis/Philip Glass/Robert Fripp. May be fsol? Robet Miles? Eno?.. Really interesting. It could be work for 3rd album.

    1. Anne Dudley, Brian Eno, Robert Fripp, Peter Gabriel, Jan Hammer, Kitaro, someone from what was Kraftwerk, Mike Oldfield, Ruichi Sakamoto, Klaus Schulze, Vangelis might be part 3.


      Part 2 : 2016 spring : pretty much confirmed

      Giorgio Moroder, Boris Blank, Cyndi Lauper, Gary Numan, Trent Reznor, Hans Zimmer, Dave Gilmour, David Lynch, Jeff Mlls, The Orb, PortisHead, Chemical Brothers.

      1. I’d rather have the members of Neu.. Michael Rother and Klaus Dinger. Or something from Cluster/Kluster/Harmonia. (Kraftwerk is so derivative of their stuff that it’d be like including a song by Creed instead of a song by Pearl Jam.)

        1. Klaus Dinger and Michael Rother met as members of the nascent Kraftwerk. They left to form Neu! and persue their “motorik” rhythm style.

          Unfortunately, Klaus passed away a few years ago.

  4. what about the other greats of British electronic pioneers like Rick Wakeman and Keith Emerson? Great album and cant wait till part 2 comes out

  5. Wow this is good PR. He had some so much bad focused pr the last years. Maybe to poppy for my taste but it’s good. Much better than Kraftwerk playing hits from 1984 on endless repeat. Nice.

  6. this is a great album. Except for the Little Boots track. That blows and doesn’t belong. (Pandering to teeny-boppers?) Anyway, the rest of it is fantastic! First EM album in ages I can enjoy all the way through (after deleting Boots).

  7. bunch of old white men postulating on what the future will sound like.
    seriously: although there are a few female voices (2 out of 30…) on “part 1”, the rest of the artists tend to be older men. there are only two non-white artists, Ruichi Sakamoto and Kitaro, (both Japanese).
    this, and the histories of these artists, dis-clude people of color and women, unless they can play music written by european composers (sakamoto and kitaro), or can sing into a mic, and just be a “voice” (little boots and laurie anderson)

    1. Stop being silly.

      JmJ Oxygene Equinoxe : feminine even possibly sensual.

      JmJs adoration of Laurie Anderson since 1984 Zoo look.

      JmJs tribute to Dulci September : with Mirele Pombo and the Female Choir from Mali : Revolutions piece September.

      JmJ venerating the Timeless Essence of Women : Chronologie album.

      JmJ with Sharon Corr, Natcha Atlas : Metamorphoses pieces Rendezvous a Paris, Cest La Vie.

      JmJ adoration of his French Resistance Mother who was in concentration camp.

      1. Oxygene is saying stop destroying our Earth : Mother Earth (Earth as a Skull album cover).

        Equinoxe : looking inward into our Spirit our Soul : in mysticism Spirit, Soul are Feminine (Binoculars on figures album cover).

        1. but what of the products: does it matter what jmj says when all instances of his realized visions share similar context?
          how does his description of what he wants his art to be create the same resonance , for the viewer, in the execution of the act, as the resonance that jmj finds within his own pieces?

          i dont dispute his intentions: no one should. the completed works, though, seem only fractionally representative of his goals, in that case. how can we look to jmj as a model of promoting femenism when he hasnt made an album featuring and uplifting women? Jean-Michelle’s internal dialogue may include contemplation of femeninity, but its through his eyes that we always experience his art, no matter who or what the subject. it is rare that this pop-icon creates concept albums that truly step outside of his own vision. JMJ, is, in essence, a pop icon, more equatable to beyonce, than michael jackson- whilst jackson would write and record songs that promoted positive thinking and other themes important to him (in the face of negative press), beyonce will uncompromisingly release an album, but not address the charitable leanings she possesses, or positive messages she is trying to spread, in the body of her work.

          my long point , is: this man is not an artist, or living library of electronic music. hes a pop-icon. i own many of his albums and will continue to enjoy them for what they are: pop records. but “chronicles” and “histories” of electronic music? not at all.

    1. Mars, I would be very surprised to think he did that on purpose. Who is to say that he asked other artists and they either were too busy, didn’t fit in with his schedule for the album, or just refused. A lot of the artists featured are hardly what you could consider to be a who’s-who of electronic artists although for the most part the tracks ended up pretty good. He did say that it was some of the artists that influence him, and some are probably just there to boost sales and get his name out there to a younger generation. Oxygene and Equinoxe were brilliant albums but they are nearly 40 years old, and although I’m a fan, I don’t think he has ever equalled them.

    2. Stop being silly.

      Jeff Mills : Electronica Part 2



      Zoolook : Marcus Miller, Yogi Horton, Samples from many African countries.

      Rendezvous Rons Peace : Astronaut Ron McNair from Challenger 1986 dear friend to JmJ. Rons Saxophone part played by Kirk Walhum in Houston.

      Revolutions : Mirele Pombo and the Choir from Mali, Tribute to Dulci September

      Calypso : The Amoco Renegades steel band Trinidad Tobago.

      Guess what yep they all Ebony

  8. Sad to only see one krautrock/kosmische group in there, no solo kosmische, and no Vangelis. “eclectic line-up” is right.

  9. It’s a great album! I hope we get Vangelis, Mike Oldfield, Rick Wakeman, Prodigy, Chemical brothers, Howard Jones and Jan Hammer in the next album.

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