At the free Parisian festival, a trio of sound wizards from the historic French Touch are preparing to transform the forecourt of the Town Hall into a dance floor, Thursday, June 29 at the end of the evening. We wanted to know more about this unique six-handed project. Interview.
In the rich program, always well maintained, of the next Fnac Live, which takes place from Wednesday June 28 to Friday June 30, a name, or rather a trio of names joined, caught our eye: Etienne de Crécy x Boombass x Dj Falcon, scheduled together Thursday, June 29 at the end of the evening. What is this unidentified object, straight out of the historic French Touch Canal?
Each in their own way, these three artists have left their mark on French and international electronic music over the past three decades. Etienne de Crécy made history with the euphoric house of his famous Superdiscount series, then with his innovative live structure, the Cube, which the world envied us, but also, from 1996, with the Motorbass project in duet with the late Philippe Zdar , who accidentally disappeared in June 2019. Boombass (Hubert Blanc-Francart, his real name) was the latter’s partner in Cassius, a feverish electronic tandem that gave us a number of hits like I Love U So, toop-toop Or Feeling for You, after having been behind the scenes of MC Solaar’s first two albums. As for DJ Falcon, close to Thomas Bangalter of Daft Punk with whom he raged under the pseudonym Together, his boosted sets and his hectic remixes – in particular of good times of chic and Fly by Cassius – have been rocking dance floors around the world since 1999.
We wanted to know everything about this unprecedented six-handed project. Etienne de Crécy and Boombass have agreed to tell us about the birth and the future of this “dream team” of sound wizards, which is above all the pretext for a reunion between old friends, and for the public the rare opportunity to see these three legends. join forces to make people dance.
How was this three-way project born?
Etienne de Crecy : To celebrate the 25th anniversary of Superdiscount, in October 2021, I organized an evening at the Petit Palace. I had asked Hubert (Boombass) and Stéphane (DJ Falcon) to come and play with me, as well as Alex Gopher – who no longer wants to DJ at all. But the evening went really well, I had very good feedback, people were thrilled.
boombass : At that time I had stopped DJing. It was a somewhat complicated period in my life… But that night I had a blast mixing and I found out why we were doing it. I loved playing again with Falcon and reuniting with Etienne.
Etienne de Crecy : Following that, we had three booking requests. We said why not? We did the Electric Park (electronic festival that takes place in Chatou editor’s note) last year thanks to Joachim Garraud. At the Palace, we had played one after the other like at an evening with friends, but for Electric Park we had prepared a real set.
What have you done since?
EdC : For the music festival, we were supposed to play this year on the Summer Stage in New York, but a visa problem prevented us from doing so. At the start of the school year, we do the American CRSSD festival in San Diego. We hadn’t really planned to develop that, but we are in demand, especially by the Anglo-Saxons, so we try to adapt.
B : I’m really happy to be able to do all this without it taking on astronomical proportions. It remains above all a thing of friendship and transmission of what we know how to do.
What are you playing together?
EdC : For Electric Park, we only mixed period pieces, it was a bit of a 90s nostalgia set. But now, with the other dates coming up, we don’t want to stay stuck in this period because these are pieces that we have already played thousands of times.
B : Staying on an era is a bit boring. There are still great records coming out today. So we planned to mix our music, little known stuff, at least from a certain audience, with current things. But it’s still really house.
EdC : House and electro. It’s quite eclectic but we’re not in the current very speed trend, hard-trans at 160 BPM. The old songs, we have them, we can play them if necessary. But the option of leaving the thing open is more fun. The advantage, with Boombass and Falcon, is that even if it goes all over the place, it’s still good music. And the sets are never alike: if someone sees us twice, it will be totally different.
How do we mix at three?
EdC : Already at two, it’s special, then at three… By rehearsing we managed to find a tone, a method that works. We decided to do a real B2B2B2B, that is to say, to improvise. The idea is to play a piece each, and to follow it up as quickly as possible, so that it’s fun. It’s funny to see that we didn’t remember the same songs: we play quite different music today, which means that the set bounces in all directions. We mix live, feeling, it forces us to be hyper reactive.
B : Mixing in threes is much more complicated than you might imagine, even if you’ve been mixing for a long time. We improvise and we don’t have the same records, so it can quickly become chaos. That’s what’s funny. The art of the DJ is also not to make mistakes, not to cut too early, not to put the music on at any time. We are free, but we have to stay focused, try not to go from rooster to donkey and keep the energy. It’s a real exercise.
Is this project only destined to remain a live project? Have you started composing together?
EdC : No, it is not planned. But we could, yes, why not?
B : That could be the next phase. A common piece can be really funny. It’s a good idea.
Is Fnac Live special for you?
EdC : It’s like playing at home. I think this is the third time I’ve played at Fnac Live. It’s an ultra good-natured festival, with a great atmosphere. The Parisian, when he doesn’t have to pay, he’s super nice (laughs).
B: We played at Fnac Live with Cassius in 2017 when the album was released Ibifornia. We had no idea what it was, we had arrived with our hands in our pockets and there was a crazy crowd. I have a great memory of it. This time, I go downright with stage fright.
Beyond this “dream team”, what are your respective projects?
EdC: I’m working on a new album and I should release a first single in September. It’s an album with features, without instrumentals. The sound is closer to my album Tempo Vision. It really is the record to listen to at home.
B : I am starting to write again, after my autobiography (Boombass, A story of the French Touch, published in August 2021 Ed). It’s not really a sequel, I would like to come back to what I failed to address and deepen in the first one. And then I put my hands back into the music we were making with Philippe, all those things that we’ve never released, and it’s exciting. Not all of them are interesting, but some are the reflection of an era, and remind me of craftsmanship. I reflect on a kind of journey in our adventure between words and music. Cassius ended in a weird and violent way… so I would love to bring some beauty and sunshine into that. My idea would be to take the reader-listener with us, as we were doing it.
Etienne de Crécy x Boombass X DJ Falcon mix threesome at the Fnac Live festival on Thursday June 29, place de l’Hôtel de ville in Paris.