A month ago I went to a big electronic music festival, Astropolis, in Brest, France. Laurent Garnier, Cassius, Goldie, Rusko, Marble Players, Carl Graig, The Toxic Avenger, The Shoes, Teenage Bad Girl, Housemeister, Stephan Bodzin, Gesaffelstein… As you can see it's a line up you don't want to miss if you listen to EDM.
I could catch interviews with The Toxic Avenger and Teenage Bad Girl.
I didn't post this before because Toxic's manager wanted me to give you guys an exclusive track along with the interview. Nevertheless, his record label staff is in holidays and I couldn't get the track yet, so I'm posting the interview now and keeping in touch for the track in a future post.
I saw Toxic in a huge concert hall, La Carène a.k.a the Bunker Palace, with concerts inside and on the roof. As some of you must already know, since the release of his new album, Toxic started doing a live show with an actual band (drummer and guitar player). I already saw him playing as a DJ some months before but the live band is very different, and the feeling is more like in a concert. I really recommend it if some of you can see him live someday.
EM: I think a majority of our readers already know you, but if you can start by introducing yourself.
Simon: My name is Simon, a.k.a The Toxic Avenger and I make electro music. To be simple that's it.
EM: Ok, and what do you use to make music in terms of software or hardware or both?
Simon: Before I used only software because it's useful when you have no money. Now that I have a little bit more money I buy some hardware. I have some Moog synthesizers. It's very cool because I like when there are some "imperfections" in the music. If you use only a computer, the sound is very precise and regular but with hardware you always have some difference that brings life to the music.
EM: Which DAW do you use?
EM: And your inspiration while you make music? More electro, rock?
Simon: Rock for sure. I don't listen much electro at home. I'm really into 80's pop from the UK, like The Smiths for example. But I don't really know what inspires me. A lot of stuff I'm sure but I don't really have conscious of it to point it out.
EM: You did sign your first EP on an American record label, IheartComix. Why choose the United States when you are French?
Simon: I uploaded my tracks on Myspace so my friends could easily listen but 2 weeks after they contacted me. So a month later I went to the United States and stayed there for a bit.
EM: Ok, do you have a lot of gigs in the States?
Simon: Yes, I go there like once every month to play.
EM: You just released your last Album, "Angst". It's very different from what you were doing before. Less "electro noise", more "musical" I would say. Is this a change in your career?
Simon: Hmm, actually I think that before I was only making very dark music. Eventually I evolved my music into something more complex and melancholic which you hear right now.
EM: And how do you see 2012?
Simon: I'm gonna finish my wife's album and then start an album for a group of American singers called Lexicon, which I'm going to produce.
EM: Thanks Simon. Now I have some question from Earmilk readers.
Someone asked if you started production with another guy? I don't think so but he told us that he saw you performing with someone else in the States.
Simon: The first time I came to the United States I came with a friend. Because I used to wear a mask when playing, he wore one too, but he never did music with me, it was just a friend.
EM: How did you come up with "The Fall"? There is too many little noises to know what's going on?
Simon: As I told you I like imperfection. A lot of people remove it but me, I keep it, and that's all the noise in The Fall.
EM: Do you like beer as much as everyone does?
Simon: I hate beer.
EM: Where were you during 9/11?
Simon: In New York actually. Far from the Twins Tower, but I was there.
Pictures taken by Sebastien Durand.