CHAIN D.L.K.: As with every interview, I’d like to start with a little bit of history. How have you met (besides the fact that you, Fred and Cyrille, are brothers) and when have you started to play?
Fred: We met 10 years ago with Chrsitelle and this is how everything started! Chrsitelle and I were working at the same place, we started to talk about music and we realized we liked the same artists like Björk, New Order or Clients and even others. But with Cyrille, we were already playing music on our side. So we decided to experience a new musical project with Chrsitelle, her brother Patrice and her friend William: this is how the musical formation began and how the name was found.
Christelle: We worked together and we had opportunities to speak about different things and discovered that we had a common passion: music, and specifically certain types of music. He told me that he played music with his brother… We met to do some vocal try outs on one of their creations: “Venise”. We enjoyed creating together and that’s how our Happy Project began!
CHAIN D.L.K.: On both of your albums there’s more than just electronic instruments, one can also find some bass guitar lines here and there as well as some guitars, so, considering this, along with the fact that you have your peculiar sound, I can’t think of you strictly as a synthpop band. What is your perception of your own sound?
Cyrille: I think that we belong to no school, this is why we used to say that we’ve got a real DIY attitude in Happiness Project. We don’t try to sound like someone, we just want to have our personal musical universe.
Christelle: Actually, our inspiration came from different sources: electronic music, but also from other types of music… That’s the reason why our music is so eclectic! We use electronic instruments as well as more sensuous ones, where all the instruments are combined in harmony.
Fred: You are right: I think we are more than simply an electronic band! Actually electronic music was how we started and we didn’t want to give it up. But we are aware of other instruments and atmospheres.
CHAIN D.L.K.: On your new website I couldn’t find your first album “Remove Or Disable” in the album section. Why? I still think that it’s a great album…
Cyrille: Thank you, I really like “Remove or Disable”! Of course you can find our first album at the bottom of our web page. It is still available and can be ordered directly from Happiness Project.
CHAIN D.L.K.: As far as I remember at one point, after releasing your first album, you had an album ready for the Clogsontronics label, who were ready to release new music besides the Störung and Ensemble Pittoresque re-issues, but after the ADN’ Ckrystall 7″ I didn’t hear anything about that any longer… silence. Can you tell us what happened?
Cyrille: Clogsontronics was a nice project, but I know that Ton Willekes (Ensemble Pittoresque) had some health issues, so he decided to step aside and give him some room. We were very sorry for him, the album was ready and thanks to BOREDOMproduct that album became ”9th Heaven”!
CHAIN D.L.K.: What about those songs? Have you used them?
Cyrille: Yes! Our new label has kept all the initial songs and we’ve added 2 new tracks: “Desillusion” and “Heights”!
CHAIN D.L.K.: After some years, you’re back with your second album “9th Heaven”. What’s the concept behind that title?
Cyrille: The album “9th Heaven” talks about the idea of a progress, an ascent. Each song is an additional step, which gradually drives the listener towards the different stratum of our musical universe.
CHAIN D.L.K.: Can you tell us something about the different phases that brought you to the album production and post-production?
Cyrille: After contacting BOREDOMproduct, we started to work with then long-distance. I sent the tracks by mail, Member u-0176 worked alone on our tracks in his “synthélabo” and sent us back his propositions of production. The entire band listened to the new versions and we gave back our different points of view. When we arrived at the point of the mastering, we went (Fred and I) to Marseille to finish the production of “9thHeaven”, it was a great moment, because we could hear and touch the result of our efforts. Our work ended in August and BOREDOMproduct did all the post-production job, so we are happy!
CHAIN D.L.K.: The different songs seems to touch upon personal relationships. What aspects do you like to cover in your lyrics, usually?
Fred: Not really personal relationships: “9th Heaven” is about experiences. So we wanted to cover a large range of them, and of course some of our personal relationships might have influenced our lyrics. But we wanted to deal with what anyone may have to face, once in his or her life.
Christelle: In my opinion “9th Heaven” deals with 2 main topics: Our current world and its crisis which brings frustration and sadness (Desillsuion, Heights, Poupée Mécanique…); as well as our personal wish to re connect with our true and deep reality (Flesh and Bones, No name, Something…). “9th Heaven” is really an album which talks about the tension between these two aspects in our lives.
CHAIN D.L.K.: Am I wrong to say that they are a bit darker compared to the ones in “Remove Or Disable”?
Fred: No, you are right! It’s much darker, but it’s probably because there is more maturity in our words and also in the way we play our music. We definitely wanted “9th Heaven” to sound like something more serious.
Christelle: Indeed, the songs in “9th Heaven” are somehow darker, more melancholic because we want to give another hue to our new project.
CHAIN D.L.K.: What about your gear? Is there a synth you won’t ever sell and why?
Cyrille: There are certainly a lot of synthesizers which I’d like to buy to improve the sound of Happiness Project! But yes there are two instruments which became great friends of mine: my Korg (Triton LE) and my bass! I know them well now, I know how they react, what kind of sounds I can expect from them, and I can maybe dream that these two instruments know me well too!
Fred: We could never sell our Korg LE Station synthesizer! It has shaped our sound for ten years! It’s part of our DIY process! We could never give it away!
CHAIN D.L.K.: How did you get in contact with Boredom Products and do you think that you have finally found a label that you feel at home with?
Cyrille: We met them a very simple way: our new album was composed and I published some new demos on Facebook and SoundCloud. People who had listened to these new tracks told us to contact the french synth-pop label BOREDOMproduct, because they thought that our new stuff was very close to the label’s productions. They were right, I contacted Member U-0176 (Celluloide) and sent him our first album and some demos. He saw the video of our first version of “Blue Eyed Boy” and told me: «Ok we’ll work together for your future album!».
CHAIN D.L.K.: What are your future live and studio projects?
Christelle: At the moment, we are promoting our LP. We are doing a lot of interviews on the radio, on the web or in newspapers. We are looking for venues to play showcases and festivals. Live concerts are a way to share our music, to live it, to give it more meaning thanks to visuals from our designer Emmanuel. We are composing new titles but we don’t intend to record in the studio for the moment. Maybe later for our next album !
Fred: We’ll certainly perform some concerts here in our hometown Limoges! There is also a date in Bordeaux. We already have new tracks, new music, and new ideas. As for me, I’d like to intensify the experimental side of our music, like in No Name!
Cyrille: For the studio project, I’d like to compose new things that are a bit more “dance”. I know that Fred wants new experimental songs and Christelle certainly more electronic sounds… I’m sure that our next album will be a pure DIY project again!
visit the artist on the web at: www.happinessproject.fr