Jeremie Whistler

by the partae
Jeremie Whistler
Where are you currently based and what is the music scene like there?

I live in Paris, France. I have to admit that i’m not really up to date with the French music scene because I rarely listen to French music. 
There are of course some French artists that I really love such as Camille, Keren Ann, but they have been around for a while.
 
How did you first start playing electronic music and start singing?

I’ve always loved singing, when i was a kid I used to sing in choirs. I used to go the church choir with some old ladies, 
just because i loved the sound there, the reverberation. I also had an amazing teacher at school who was passionate about singing  and took us to contests.
I started producing music around 20, when i got my first computer. I found a cracked version of cubase and started assembling sounds, making beats out of anything i could find around me, in the style of Matmos. It was quite experimental, and then i started to incorporate my voice, first destructured bits of voice, and then melodies.
 
Your new album is coming out in February 2019, where and when did you record?

It was mostly recorded at home in Paris between 2015 and 2017. One track was recorded in a studio, and the strings were recorded in a concert hall.
 
What influenced the sound and songwriting for this album?

It was definitely influenced by all the music i’ve been listening since i was a teenager : björk, sigur ros, radiohead, a lot of trip hop…  And probably some current acts such as James Blake, Sohn, Braids, Julianna Barwick, Nils Frahm… mainly dreamy and electronic pop.  The songs are a lot about me, it is a very introspetive album, but in a messy and mysterious way.   I don’t necessarily tell stories, sometimes it’s almost surrealistic, but it still has a meaning, if you decode it.
 
How did you work with during the recording/producing process?

I produced and recorded 8 tracks on the album, 3 tracks are produced or co-produced by my friend Sylvain Ollivier, and 1 track is produced by Saycet. With Sylvain it was a natural collaboration, he plays with me on stage and I’ve known him for a very long time.  He gave me a demo of “Seven Seas” and I immediately felt inspired and wrote the song very quickly. “Take Shelter” was formerly destined for a side project that we wanted to make together, but it felt really right for my album. I also recorded the piano parts with Aurélien Bianco, who is my other live collaborator, recorded in his living room. I collaborated with Celia Triplet who wrote some strings arrangements for 3 songs on the album. The rest of the album was a very lonely process, i think i really like to work alone as much as possible.
 
Do you have a favourite track from the album and if so which and why?

“Seven seas” is probably my favorite track on the album. I think Sylvain and I complete each other very well, he has got some great composition skills.  It is probably not the catchiest song on the album but in my opinion the most unique.
 
Your new single ‘Smoke Signals’ is out now, what influenced the sound of this track?

“Smoke signals” is kind of a synthesis of the album, it has the etheral bits in the verses, and somme poppier moments. 
I actually wrote this song years ago, and it has had many shapes, but i was never quite happy with it. I’ve put to good use all the skills i’ve acquired during the creation of the album to finally finish it.  The second verse is definitely inspired by the bass that you can hear in the “Stranger Things” opening credits, I wanted something hypnotic like that!
 
Where did the filming for the video clip take place and who did you work with?
We filmed the video in a concert venue in Paris. I directed the video myself with the help of friends. 
Clémence Tru, who is a drag queen and make-up artist, imagined the character that I become throughout the video.  I also asked my dear friend illustrator Capt’n Super to work on the animated drawings.
 
How did the concept for the video come about?

I wanted to make something purely visual, based on the light installation that I use on stage, a set of 8 giant origamis that have lamps inside that I program so they interact with the music.  It creates a very mysterious and hypnotic atmosphere. Then there is me in the middle, slowly turning into the demon/alien sage i’m fighting against.
 
Who are you listening to at the moment?
Rosalia, Mariah Carey, Nils Frahm, Nina Simone, Robyn, James Blake, Iglooghost…  And also Ariana Grande.
 
What do you like to do away from music?

I am also a graphic designer, i like everything that is image related. I’ve just started learning 3D and actually made a music video for one of the new songs called “Take Shelter”.
 
What do you have planned for 2019?

I will release my album in February and then do some live shows! And then start writing some new songs…
 
Favourite food and place to hangout?

Anything with melted cheese. I rarely go to the same place twice, so many things to try!

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