PART COMPANY, two words, two French musicians re-inventing indie-pop in their (very) singular way.
Early ‘90s, Yoël and Damien meet in a Lyon international school and bond around Damien’s father’s eclectic record collection. Both having basic guitar and piano skills, they start writing music and intensely living this new passion. They soon discover another common point: both have an innate taste for living outside France. America, Morocco or Australia. Damien leaving for London and Yoël for Colombia won’t loosen their ties. They write music as soon as they are reunited.
While living together in Nice, they craft the first sounds of SEASONS. Yoël then sets out for Berlin but both decide to post a few tracks on MySpace and to come up with a name for the group. The song by the Go-Betweens and their state of constant separation, inspire the name PART COMPANY. Label GUM will soon support them and allow them to come up with this first album, heralded by two Eps: Babar (2011) and Manfred (2016); and remarkably achieved.
Like their incorrigible nomadic life, their influences in music don’t obey any generic constraints: Sun Ra, Daniel Johnston, Nick Drake, Tom Waits, Syd Barrett, The Beatles, Bert Jansch, The Kinks, The Pixies, The Chemical Brothers, The Jesus & Mary Chain, Ride… And also Miles Davis’s jazz and more recently, Caribou or Animal Collective: « these groups who offer something else ».
SEASONS, PART COMPANY’s first album, is crafted in retro-pop, psychedelic echoes and folk. From “Babar”’s psych reverie and hip-hop-influenced beats to the aerial ballad full of contrasts that is “My Gurl”; from “Vartan”’s raw energy to the tropical-rock serenade that is “Manfred”, each track digs into a proper universe, a colour, a sound, a time in history. Damien and Yoël tell their visions of love, friendship, mourning, geographical separation: all reasons to SEASONS’s long and rich genesis.
Engineered by the two friends and produced in London by the talented Luke Smith (Foals, Depeche Mode, Petite Noir), this album proves the duo’s dexterity. Most tracks were recorded in Yoël’s family house, in the Maritime Alps; a natural environment that offered an essential sound to the album: the charm of melodies, the impudence of riffs, the power of beats. A deceiving lightness that hits you to the core, like the album’s art, designed by photographers Mazaccio & Drowilal. Four themes from summer to spring showing couples of ponies and other animals gazing at a sunset: an undertaken tackiness to assert emotion through a real aesthetic research.
While getting ready to support the album on stage, Damien and Yoël will have to put aside the shyness that kept them confined to this day. Now is the time to let out the raw but elegant energy –from their tangled and condensed lives– that SEASONS represents. « We witnessed this album grow and it saw us mature, Damien explains. It vouches for our traumas without being tearful. » « It is paramount for us to keep music playful, Yoël adds. We trust the songs’ transformation abilities and we like to leave the door open for the listener’s own feelings ».
With Damien’s metamorphic voice as a conducting wire, SEASONS turns out to be a timeless album, stirring up the past and embracing contemporary days. Isn’t it the very imprint of great pop landmarks ?
DEBUT ALBUM « SEASONS » 03.03.2017
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