Aeroplane—In Flight Entertainment | Album review
In Flight Entertainment (Eskimo Records)
Aeroplane has come a long way since its oddball self-titled debut EP surfaced on Belgian Balearic-disco-dance label Eskimo Records. What was once a duo releasing blissful left-field grooves that defied easy categorization is now, five years later, a trustworthy, one-man brand. Helmed by Italian-born Belgian Vito De Luca, Aeroplane is a consistent source of dance-floor-certified, modern, pop-disco burners—whether through original productions or, most notably, through his remixes and monthly online DJ mixes.
The latter, which regularly garner upwards of 30,000 listens per mix, have cemented De Luca as an artist-breaking DJ on par with the radio jocks of old. Up-and-comers flood his in-box with pleas for their as-yet-to-be-heard, hot-off-the-hard-drive productions to get a spin on the series, which he’s dubbed In Flight Entertainment. Capitalizing on the popularity of the series and the clout it’s given him, the dance-inducing pilot has boiled down the essence of his mixes on this official mix-CD of the same name.
The sounds here, all of which are exclusive to the mix and being heard for the first time, are pure jet-set house—beginning with pristine cocktail sipping pre-party grooves and ending at the height of a Ital-disco-fueled Ibiza dance party. What’s most noteworthy here is how much better this mix captures the Aeroplane aesthetic than his album, We Can’t Fly, did last year. His album seemingly failed to deliver the same potent grooves of his remixes, or even his earlier productions with former partner Stephen Fasano.
In Flight Entertainment achieves the exact opposite effect. Whether it’s the sunset grooves of the fittingly named Poolside that start things up, the international flair of Herr Styler’s “It Will Never Be the Same Again,” which can only be described as house music from the Orient, or even De Luca’s own original contribution, “Save Me Now”—which is formulaic yet infectious—this mix is exactly how I would hope 90 minutes of Aeroplane would sound.
He finds room for it all. The bubbling disco bass and those signature mirror-ball strings comes courtesy of Drop Out Orchestra’s “It Will Never Be the Same Again,” Italo’s arpeggiated stutter and digital chatter from RipTide’s “Sophie.” There’s even a taste of the electro funk of Parisian masters Daft Punk on James Curd’s “Let’s Burn It All.” As Moonlight Matters sets us down for a smooth landing at the mix’s end, our journey has made one thing crystal clear: It’s as a DJ that Aeroplane truly soars.