Sunday, 2 October 2011

Guide To France

For me France has produced classics from the likes of Deep Forest, Laurent Garnier and La Funk Mob. However, the giants of the French scene are probably Daft Punk and Air and I have never really been a fan of either.

On holiday in the early 90’s I soon established Bob Marley was massive but I also picked up on a compilation series “Rave Master Mixers” which introduced me to some of their progressive and techno DJ’s of the time.

On the darker side of electronica Die Form combined operatic vocals with fetish themes while MC Solaar came to the forefront of French Hip-Hop with lots of exposure on Acid Jazz compilations and we certainly can’t forget the wonderful fusion of world and chill on the Buddha Bar compilations.


Inspired by the chants of the Baka Pygmies Michael Sanchez and Eric Mouquet found instant success with their smash hit “Sweet Lullaby” and the self titled album “Deep Forest” in the early 90’s.  The albums continued using a variety of ethnic themes leading to re-mixes, film soundtracks, world music awards and working with prominent artists such as Peter Gabriel, Youssou N’Dour and Apollo 440. Eric Mouquet has more recently composed a series of solo albums in the same vein called the “Deep Projects”.

Vincent Villuis a.k.a. Aes Dana after playing bass for a number of coldwave and industrial bands turned his hand to many electronic musical projects as a founder member of Asura, one half of H.U.V.A. Network, d.j. and co-owner of Ultimae Records. Aes Dana uses acoustic sounds, tweaked and layered over down-tempo trance like electronica influenced by space music.

Florian Seriot seems to be slightly aloof when it comes to a bio on the web. So all I can really tell you is he has produced five albums fusing Arabic, tribal and ambient electronica since 1996 and has composed and contributed to Digital Mystery Tour.

Hailing from Lyon High Tone have fused together roots and dub with electronic, dnb and world music since 2000. Ignoring the current trend of computer dub High Tone create their sound with guitars, drums, keyboards and turntables taking this live show to a world-wide audience.

Franck Jousselin the drummer for French electro-pop band Romy and Biscuits started to release psybient tracks on compilations in 2001 and his debut album “Cup Of Tea” was released in 2005. His third and latest album “Kind Of Imagination” has drifted away slightly from the initial psybient vibe introducing techy, electro-pop and shoegaze sounds.  Franck is also actively dj’ing in clubs and festivals both in France and abroad.

Other artists worth exploration

Choice Label

Ultimae Records

Based in Lyon, France Ultimae Records has released, mastered and distributed down-tempo trance and ambient electronica since 2001. The label has gone from strength to strength with prolific artists such as Solar Fields, Aes Dana, Carbon Based Lifeforms and Cell they are a popular choice with fans of ambient music.

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