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Hacienda Hollywood
Nuclear Cream

Alphonse : Drummer

Paul : Guitarist, backing singer

Victor : Keyboards, lyricist

Who are you ?

Paul : Three insecure Parisians tired of seing the poor offer of musical industry.

Alphonse : That have called for Kephas Barjona, the legendary prophet !

Paul : That have decided to gather bare chested in a 9m2 room to play music.

When did you start making music?

Alphonse : We’ve all started our instruments very early but we started playing together around 2015. 

 

Victor : The first material was recorded November 2017.

 

Paul : It was shit.

 

Victor : It was indeed.

 

Paul : We’ve always had the wish to auto produce, and that’s what we’ve always done since 2015. We record in a house in the countryside because it really matches with the type of music we want to create.

Could you record an album and not release it or let anyone else hear it and still be satisfied with it?

Victor : It’s funny because we’ve done that. We made a concept album about the creation of the universe that was never released. But two of the tracks have actually made their way to the album with a few changes : « Cicero Conjurazione » and «  Bienvenue à l’Hôtel Occidental ».

Alphonse : And we have released on the platforms only 10% of what we actually created. There’s so many half recorded tracks sleeping in the band’s computer.

 

Victor : So yeah we could record a lot of stuff again and not release it though it would be frustrating. 

 

Alphonse : It’s always a way to improve by listening to all the sleeping tracks and wondering how we could turn turn them into decent songs.

What musicians further inspire you to create music? 

Alphonse : We would have to answer that separately. 

 

Victor : I would say Kraftwerk, Charlie Parker and Lou Reed.

 

Paul : As a guitar player, i would have to say Stevie Ray Vaughan. Also, the Doors and Joy Division because i think that was an enormous slap in our three faces.

 

Alphonse : I would also say the Doors, Jacques Brel and Stupeflip. 

 

Victor : Yes, Stupeflip was definitely inspiring.

"..we’re mainly attached to roots and we’re more in a process of continuing traditions rather than pretending to create something entirely new."
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The best show you've ever played?

Alphonse : The best was Supersonic, it was wonderful to play with The White Screen and Pierrot ( Victor’s great uncle ).

 

Paul : Mine was La Pointe Lafayette, we had so little space i played in the middle of the crowd, we had a very raw energy there.

 

Victor : I would go for the last show before lockdown, le Quai de Bourbon. I think we did a good performance there.

Can you talk more about your single "Nuclear Cream" to be released early 2021? 

Victor : The creation process was pretty typical of Novichok. Paul had this very powerful  « stadium » guitar riff and i had the lyrics for a few years without ever figuring out how to place them. It was the last song of the album that we recorded. The theme of the song is to turn a situation of pathetic sexual misery into this massive vital energy, nearly…nuclear.

Alphonse : It was nearly a command because Dimitri ( Milbrun, from Doggo Agostino Records ) was pushing us to come up with a banger.

 

Victor : Yes, and he was bloody right. I was never sure about the song but the last night of the recording session, I was in the studio with Paul and he said : « i’ve got a phone call to take upstairs, do what you know, it’s gonna come out good, trust me ». After one or two takes, i knew the album was wrapped and i ran almost crying in Paul’s room saying : « we’ve done it, it’s over », he said « did you sing in tune ? » I replied : « no but i sung loud ! ».

 

Paul : Yeah that’s the typical process of creation wich is to combine various ideas even if it has to take years to make them match.

 

Alphonse : And we’ve managed to incorporate « Kassav » into it.

 

Paul : We’re getting better at putting energy into songs and we really love to work on this type of songs. Weather it’s on post-production or on actually playing the song, it’s always a lot of fun. 

 

Alphonse : I recall when you recorded the song, i was in the living room watching television like thirty meters and three doors away ( the studio is a cabin in the garden ) and i heard these screams coming out of the studio. I thought they were animal screams and that there was something clearly wrong.

 

Paul : We weren’t very… « fresh » with Vic. We wanted to make bodies move, i think it’s the spirit of the song. Sexy bodies !

 

Alphonse : That’s another debate.

Are you planning more projects? Also, I want to know more about your EP “Kephas Barjana”! 

Paul : We have three video clips coming for the album. The album coming this spring of course, « Hôtel Occidental »  And especially play on stage again since we’re abroad at the moment ( Alphonse lives in England, Victor in Hungary ).

 

Alphonse : And as Victor says, three albums and retirement. 

 

Paul : And a venue and Los Angeles !

"We wanted to make bodies move, i think it’s the spirit of the song. Sexy bodies!"

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Alphonse : It was after being approached by Doggo Aggostino, they wanted us to start with an EP so we left for the countryside as we always do and we came out with these strange portraits or strange situations as the battle of Algiers on « Heatwave on the Casbah ».

 

Paul : It was also finding our sound throughout these portraits. We explored the atmospheres we like which are Blues, psychedelic and electronic. It was important to bring Pierre Jean ( previous Pierrot) that brought a very important touch to the EP with this prophet inspired project. He embodies Kephas. 

 

Victor : The fact that the « Kephas Barjona » came out on physical also really enhanced the pride of making the EP.

Your guys’s sound is very eclectic and subversive, a sound you can get lost in, in a daze. Do you guys consider yourself to be experimental? 

Victor : I would say no because we’re mainly attached to roots and we’re more in a process of continuing traditions rather than pretending to create something entirely new. Blues of course is our main inspiration so you always start from a scheme.

 

Alphonse : It’s more about blending various sounds into one single music. 

 

Victor : We played on a radiator with wood sticks on « Maldoror » though. 

 

Paul : « Experimental » is not the right word, i would rather say innovation because we start from the typical blues pattern and we try to add something to it. Innovation and renovation. It’s where the synthesizer is important to add this electronic touch to blues music. 

 

Victor : And also i wouldn’t call us « subversive » like the question implies. I think we’ve never intended to be. It’s pretty much an easy posture to self-proclame subversive by writing about Magda Goebbels’ depression, Yuri Gagarin’s blues or Charlie Manson because nowadays it’s no more subversive to do that. Jello Biafra wrote « California Uber Alles » forty years ago. It’s not our intention to have an intellectual posture of subversion, i just try to write good songs and as a band, we mostly try to create a music that is pleasant to the ears because that’s what it’s all about.

 

Alphonse : We might be shocking sometimes for some people but it’s not our intention. 

 

Paul : What we try is to bring innovation to a cultural environnement that has lost faith in originality and ambiguity. 

 

Alphonse : Last word ?

 

Victor : Massive nuclear sex

 

Alphonse : Oui.