Saturday November 10, Night People welcomes Parisian Para One aka Jean-Baptiste de Laubier, one of the headmaster behind hot new label Marble. He just released his new album Passion to rave reviews and we had him respond to them.
“Jean-Baptiste de Laubier’s second album as Para One presents an array of ebullient electronica, superbly suited to those few days in the British summertime when the sun cracks cloud cover to scorch tan-lines into the ill-prepared.” (BBC)
I’m okay with that “Electronica” term coming back, I actually dug a lot into my IDM (Intelligent Dance Music, Ed.) influences during the process of making “Passion”. Summertime, sun, clouds (or clear blue skies, but you know, the British weather… They don’t really have that) , were also inspiring keywords so I cosign that…
“After a rather grand opening fanfare, like a synth-borne liner proceeding slowly down the slipway, “Wake Me Up” and “Every Little Thing” set the tone of his new album Passion—brisk, silvery, synthetic soul coming at you in a shower of micro-beats that recall every production technique of the last two decades.” (Resident Advisor)
Well, I’m glad that they got the idea behind the album! Synthetic soul referring to the last two decades, that could be a good definition. The last three decades? The whole history of music? Okay, maybe not.
“You” may even be the only tune so far this year to challenge Todd Terje’s “Inspector Norse” in catchiness, danceability, and ubiquitous appeal. When the melodic breakdown drops just before the two-minute mark, it teeters as close to cliché as possible, but smartly keeps things brief and ends up being just about perfect” (XLR8R)
Thank you for that! I’m blushing… Here again, happy that they understood the concept of the track: going childishly cheesy for a second, but not too long, and back to the danceable part. Generally on the album, I read almost no misunderstandings of my intentions, don’t know if the record was good or the journalists were! And I like that Terje track too!
“The Gallic beat-maker, known for making hip-hop tracks for TTC and his synth-driven monster single “Dudun-Dun,” sadly doesn’t live up to the hype on this disc. The intensity of many tracks–twitchy electro-funk or sliced-up synth bangers pulsating in numerous neon hues–is indisputable. But the execution and soul are missing.” (XLR8R about your first album Epiphanie).
Ha, ha. Good times… Well honestly I tend to be, myself, a bit harsh on “Epiphanie” retrospectively, especially since I’ve released “Passion”, because I feel like it has a lot more soul than “Epiphanie”, which was a deranged, brutal album. So, in a way, I agree. I’m glad I didn’t read that in 2006 though (laughs).
“In a sane world, standout track, ‘Every Little Thing’, would be top of the charts all summer long.” (Clash Music Mag)
Yeah, let’s start a revolution and make that sane world happen! Help me! But wait… That single’s still not out yet, so who knows?
“Passion is perhaps digging more deeply into the producer’s hip-hop roots, while simultaneously looking farther into a strange and beautiful future where smart, weird pop music actually makes people fall in love.” (Magnetic Mag)
I definitely had the golden years of hip-hop in mind while producing most of the tracks, even the not hip-hop oriented ones. At times I would just go and seek into my classics to find tiny samples to add some flavor to the whole thing. A way to feel at home in my own album. Building something warm and, hopefully, timeless.
“So long as there’s Justice in this industry, Para One will always find a party to soundtrack.” (BBC)
I do hope that they last in this industry, I’m pretty sure they will! They’re good friends and we’ve been hanging out, playing gigs together and sharing thoughts about music for a while now. I agree that it’s important to have French acts (especially friends) in that range of success. It helped us a lot through the years.