At The Creators Project, we’re always digging into the stories behind creative works. Understanding the process with which art is made allows for a greater appreciation of the finished product. And that’s not limited to visual arts. When we’re jamming out to tunes, questions loom that are far deeper than “Dude, where is the drop?” For answers, we go straight to the source.
Last week, we kicked off The Creators Project: Paris 2012 with a panel discussion titled “The Art of Music” with Para One, Phillipe Zdar from Cassius, and Myd & Canblaster from the French collective of hitmakers Club Cheval. During this panel moderated by Pascal Bertin from Les Inrockuptibles, each artist described their artistic career and their relationship with electronic music. Below are the tracks they deconstructed for us and a parts of their commentary on the conception of each.
Para One: “Wake Me Up”
Para One: This is the first track I composed for my last record. I started it after a long discussion with my studio neighbor Jackson, who acted as my therapist over the course of an afternoon, while I was struggling to find a way to initiate this album. Basically, it is the story of a ranting guy—probably a musician—who wakes up in the morning and mutters something to his girlfriend, but we don’t really know if he asks her to wake him up or the exact opposite. I found myself mechanically humming, “Wake me up, wake me up,” and it became the track’s hook. I was really influenced by Prince at that moment, so I decided to add synthetizers following the main melody.
Underworld: “Always Loved A Film (Club Cheval remix)”
Canblaster: For this remix, our first step was to listen to a bunch of Underworld songs in order to determine if it could fit with newer kind of sounds. In the original version, the kick arrives gradually instead of coming out at once, which is one of the main characteristics of old-school techno.
This track is divided in several different parts. We decided to cut the ethnic sonorities we can hear by copying their old track’s patterns. We took African rhythmic samples and edited it. Our main goal was to pay a tribute to Underworld while updating their melodies.
Cassius: “I <3 So”
Philippe Zdar: "Hubert [Blanc-Francard] found the voice sample on a remix, and we felt the urge to do something with it because we thought it was conveying a lot of emotions. We did an intro which includes many different sounds, for example a sample from and old techno song, reversed cymbals, snare drums, and a piano we recorded. Once they’re isolated, these sounds are not particularly interesting, but it can turn out pretty great when they’re assembled. We preferred composing a slow song with a classical structure—verse/chorus/verse—rather than releasing a house track.