Julien Bitoun & The Angels: the Little Ones album

Where does your passion for music come from?
I’ve always been touched by music, and from the age of ten I wanted to play guitar and rock in a band. It’s been almost thirty years and my philosophy hasn’t changed much since then!

How did Paul Iron and Swanny Elzingre join the band and what do they bring to your compositions?
I recorded Paul’s acoustic solo album in my studio, and I really fell in love with his voice and his universe, so I asked him to join my band. Swanny came next following a post on social media! The chemistry was instantaneous, and both bring both their musicality and their enthusiasm.

Can you introduce us to your album LittleOnes and his universe?
LittleOnes is an album that was born from confinement, and from being locked up in a small Parisian apartment with a two-year-old child. It’s this feeling of a day that repeats itself ad infinitum that inhabits the album, and the compositions almost all came during this period.

How did you compose it and what were your inspirations?
I composed it alone at night in my kitchen singing quietly so as not to wake my son, and my inspiration was this great feeling of absurdity and disbelief that took over the whole world all at once .

What were your choices instrumentally?
We recorded all the songs as a live trio, then we started from this base to add some arrangements that came to flesh out the sound, such as acoustic guitars, percussion, keyboards and cello.

What do you attach the most importance to in the music you compose?
Everything is important. The first step is the quality of the composition, that is to say not to confuse a good riff with a good song, to spend time developing the chord chart, to write lyrics that sound without being weak, to find the good guitar parts that go with it, cue the arrangements, find the sound of the band that matches the song, give the best possible performance for the recording in the studio, record each track with the best possible sound, and finally mix it all with good spirit.

How did the recordings go at Black Box Studio?
It was a dream. Four days completely cut off from the world in the Angevin countryside, between the cows and the nearby pond… We had a lot of fun working there, especially since we had the opportunity to go there with the producer Arnaud Bascunana who knows exactly how to find the sound you are looking for.

What can we know from the title Explore the world ?
It’s a title I wrote while watching my son walking around the apartment. I was at the piano next to him, and I said to myself “that’s it, he’s walking, and soon he’ll be off to explore the wide world”. The whole piece came pretty quickly from this image, I could see him leaving with candy in his backpack to jump over volcanoes and rest on a water lily…

Tell us about the album cover LittleOnes
It’s the work of designer Alan Forbes, a legend of psychedelic rock from San Francisco whose work I love for the Black Crowes, the Melvins or the Queens of the Stone Age. I gave him certain elements, and he interpreted that with his own sensitivity.
The giraffe is particularly important: it is the image of a child’s toy that becomes disturbing by dint of being locked up with it. After two months of confinement, Sophie la Girafe begins to take on the air of a predator.

What interested you in offering a photo booklet with your CD?
Already we had the chance to work with the photographer Stella K who has a colossal talent, and on the other hand we wanted the listener to be able to feel close to us while listening to our music. With these photos, we hope that he will understand our delirium and that he will want to participate.

What do you want to bring to the public with this album?
Pleasure obviously. Good songs aren’t that common, rock bands that play honestly without giving into easy nostalgia are pretty rare, so I think audiences can find something in Little Ones that they won’t find elsewhere.

Do you have an anecdote to tell us?

Are concerts planned and what does the stage bring you?
There will of course be concerts, in particular the launch of the album at the Zèbre de Belleville on Saturday May 21st. The stage is also a huge pleasure, as intense and enjoyable as the studio, the opportunity to spend a privileged moment with the public.

What do you want to say to end?
If you look at them well, giraffes are still super creepy.

Thanks to Julien Bitoun & The Angels for answering our interview!

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Julien Bitoun & The Angels: the Little Ones album

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