Monday, February 24, 2014

EIC's 10Q's w/ Elise Mélinand

"..blissed out with graceful Ambiance.."

(Photo credit : Pauline Well) 

Elise Mélinand
Euphoric Benediction

Elise Mélinand Bio:
Elise Mélinand is a singer-songwriter / composer from Paris, France. The combination of her soft, childlike vocals provide a stark juxtaposition to her sometimes frenetic yet widescreen vignettes.  Mélinand originally studied cello at the conservatory until she realized that she much preferred working on more personal musical ideas. Quitting her studies she immediately starts to experiment, via a tape recorder, with any instruments or household implements she could get her hands on.  At 19, Mélinand travels through Eastern and Northern Europe. These travels prove to be intensely inspirational. Shortly after, she relocates to Berlin, and purchases her first guitar and begins to write songs. There she meets Florian Frenzel, a post-pop-punk musician with whom she records her debut EP 'Le voyage' utilizing a collection of old analogue equipment, including an old reel-to-reel from the former East Berlin radio Rundfunk der DDR.  In 2012, Mélinand ends up meeting artist/composer Christina Vantzou (Kranky / The Dead Texan) who recruits her to play in her (The) Little Prism Ensemble from whom they share bills with Nils Frahm, Johan Johansson & Max Richter. This whole new world of music gives her such deep inspiration that she starts working on sketches that will later become her debut album.  Mélinand then heads back to France and purchases herself the equipment to write music in the comfort of her home. This period is also where she transitioned from her day to day composition tool of guitar to a computer. She eventually meets the electronic musician Franck Zaragoza (Ocoeur, n5MD) who then becomes a strong musical influence.  In March 2013, Mélinand sets out to record her debut album 'Gray Hoodie'. The album being recorded mostly at her parents' house, utilizing each room as a unique recording space. Mixed and mastered by her old friend Florian Frenzel in Berlin.

Hello, how are you?
Hi 'EverythingIsChemical'. I'm doing very well, thank you. Hope you are too!;D

What are you currently listening to?
I have been listening to 'We Were Young Boys' by Sin Fang, 'Fuel To Fire' by Agnès Obel and 'Remembering' by Avishai Cohen quite a lot lately. They are very inspiring artists.

What or whom inspired you to pick up an instrument?
I was 7 years old. I went to a birthday party with my parents where an old man's gift  was to play cello. I was so moved by the sound of the instrument, I fell in love with it straight away. I got the chance to study it at the Conservatory for some time then. I also play piano probably because I've been watching my mom and grandma playing it for many years. It made me want to try it as well!

Was there a specific sound you were going for when you began your writing your solo material?
I wrote 'Gray Hoodie' in Berlin where I got to meet artists such as Christina Vantzou, Nils Frahm, Franck Zaragoza, Florian Frenzel & Will Samson who are passionate about the different ways of recording sounds. I learned a lot from them. It actually gave me quite a lot of ideas on what I wanted to try out musically. I also remember listening to James Blake's debut album almost every morning before setting-up my recording studio. I found a lot of inspiration in his music.

Care to shed some info on your latest release; theme, favorite track(s), etc?
'Gray Hoodie' was made with love and a lot of good vibes. I wrote it for a friend who I care a lot about.. It is kind of a way to thank him for everything he gave me. The songs are all related to each other. One learns more about the Gray Hoodie story through the whole record. I also unfortunately lost my beloved great-aunt while recording the album. I have dedicated her one song..

Will you be touring extensively for said release?
Yes, I'm looking forward to playing the songs live! The tour dates will be available soon on my tumblr & facebook.

Got any other projects we should know about?
Well, I am glad to announce that I am going to work with Franck Zaragoza aka Ocoeur again! He kindly asked me to feature a track of his new record. I'm excited about the collaboration, I feel like we understand each other very well.

What movie would work best on mute while listening to you music?
I'm thinking of 'Me And You And Everyone We Know'. Do you believe it would work too?;]

You can only keep/listen to ONE album for the rest of your life ..which album would it be?
I think I would pick up Ocoeur's. Not because he's a friend a of mine, but because his debut album 'Light As A Feather' was a big revelation to me and it'll always be.

Are you living your dream?
More every minute!

Thanx Elise (and Mike too!)

Elise Mélinand recently released 'Gray Hoodie', get that HERE...

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