“At the age of 14 we began to play together and let go all that bullshit. The drummer joined us later in that particular friendship as we opened up our minds together on different cultures, philosophies, drugs, and of course: sounds.”
Tell us a little bit about your band: who you are, what you do, why you do it. Remember: Hype is for PR departments, honesty is for musicians.
POLIPE is: Antoine (vocal, bass guitar, keys), Francis (guitars, vocal), Pierre-Luc (drums, vocals). First of all, we are three long-time friends, all coming from a small and lovely place, near of Quebec City. We’ve been pleased to grow up together and develop a strong relationship as well as a deep musical chemistry with shared influences and tastes. Francis and I (Antoine) have been raised in a strict religious movement that freaked out our life perceptions and future optimism. At the age of 14 we began to play together and let go all that bullshit. The drummer joined us later in that particular friendship as we opened up our minds together on different cultures, philosophies, drugs, and of course: sounds.
Then we moved to a bigger centre of attraction (Montréal), where we began to do shows and gained our own reputation, after having tried to recruit a singer (none of us wanted to sing). The fact that we’ve been playing for a long period of time without singing helped in developing our own sound. Now, we’re writing and singing in French, which was not the initial plan! Let’s say that we really are the kind of band that biographers would like, even if our international career is only beginning!
Do you have anything special you want to accomplish by coming to Iceland? What?
Fuck yeah! We’re looking to do some footage for a video of one song of ours (“Lumière t’exagères”) that is talking about the omnipresence of artificial lighting in modern cities. We think that it will make more sense than ever on the land of the midnight sun even if we’ll not be there during that specific time of the year. A good friend and talented photographer will be coming with us to help realize all this. We sure didn’t want to miss the chance to get some images in such a magnificent country! And of course, we want to make the most of our trip by meeting the people there and sharing every possible experience. We’re pretty excited in fact!
We won’t have you pin yourselves down in a genre, but maybe you can tell us what musicians you hope your fans also like. What music inspires you?
I’m glad we both agree about the annoying tendency of tagging artists in a specific genre in the modern music industry. I must say that we’re all capable of separating the good parts and the bad parts of all the genres as a person and as a musician. You got to be as open as the universe is…always expanding, as your brain should. Being inspired by every single element of the whole stew, if not deeply touched, is the ultimate goal. This is not an easy question to answer, knowing that we are always moving forward to new ideas…psychedelic rock, funk, afro-beat, folk, bossa-nova, soul, oldies in the likes of The Beatles, The Who, Jimi Hendrix, King Crimson and modern projects like The Flaming Lips, Beck, and Supergrass. Let’s say that we’d be glad that every kind of people swing their heads to our songs.
And what would you want to tell our readers, to convince them to come to your show (remember: you are not in marketing, you are an artist)?
We’re an energizing and French-singing Power-trio inspired by the seventies with much musical madness even though each of our songs is in various POP formats. We are three good looking colourful young man with catchy songs and especially: a TON of energy! Come by and share yours!
What got you making music in the first place? What kept you playing?
We are three young existentialists who still enjoy playing music together after all those years and that can be felt on a stage. Also, we all believe that there is a strong spiritual feeling to hold a jam for hours. Extracting ideas out of it always gives us a strange and incredible power.
The Montréal scene is pretty sweet, and has been represented at Iceland Airwaves by way of folks like Patrick Watson, Wolf Parade, Plants & Animals and Handsome Furs. Do you think they fairly represent what’s going on in QC, or are these the sounds of yesterday?
Those are all bands we like, of course. I don’t like the idea of the sounds of yesterday because I will never have enough time to hear everything and to anticipate the sounds of the future even less. It just never ends and you know what? That’s a pretty damn good thing. Finally, I think that every artist can only fairly represent himself and every one of them should have a chance to get heard and travel around with its music. There’s at least a little place for everybody in this world, it mostly depends on how you push yourself around, you know.
Did all the attention certain bands attracted do your scene good, or harm?
I’ve found that paying no attention to hype phenomenon is the way to go in order to be functional and to stay lit. Time should not be a factor of good or bad stuff. Timing is the main factor of hype and all the crap / fashion patterns and integrity will always go through time boundaries. But yes, some over-exposure is done in music business as well as in every domain and in the end, it doesn’t help the indier artists. What can we do against it?!
What do you like these days? Anything we should know about?
We’ve been listening to a lot of Serge Gainsbourg lately, because he’s so good and we’ll be recording a tribute E.P. later this fall, returning from Reykjavík. Otherwise, we’re deeply into afro-funk and underground California bands from the seventies. But if you ask personally, my last very favourite discovery is Fleet Foxes, which makes me want to sing every possible tear away!
Make a five-track playlist for your plane ride over. Tell us why each track is there. Your scenario: you’re just about to land, and you want to mentally prepare yourself for whatever you think is going to meet you.
Neil Young – Harvest. Because it reminds me my mom who passed away last year and many very good things happened to me since. I still don’t know why but I tend to believe that she is no stranger to that. Those strange beliefs..!
Patrick Watson – Man Like You. A perfect air-travelling song!
Polipe – Lumière T’exagères. To visualize our song with images of Iceland volcanoes and black beaches and because it’s a very good song!
The Beach Boys – God only knows. Because that is my favourite song of all-time. These lyrics contains a perfect balance between down-to-earth and dream.
The Flaming Lips – Do you realize. Because it is so powerful. And I’ve had the chance to be dancing on stage during their last show in Montreal. Great guys as well. That track is possibly in the top five songs that every human being can’t avoid being touched by.
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