Interview: NICOLAS DELASTRADE of NOVELISTS FR on the sound and process behind C’EST LA VIE, featuring Camille Contreras and new direction.
NOVELISTS FR kick off 2020 with brand new record C’EST LA VIE as the first metalcore release of the year. Out on January 24th, 2020 via Arising Empire / SharpTone Records, the record marks third full-length for Mattéo Gelsomino, Florestan Durand, Nicolas Delestrade and Amael Durand, following up album NOIR dating back to 2017.
We had an amazing opportunity to have a chat with the Parisian djentlemen to discuss all the details, the sound and the process behind the record. In this interview our editor-in-chief Alex had with NICOLAS DELESTRADE we talked about the writing and recording process approached for C’EST LA VIE, the sound portrayed and the challenges involved. We discussed the guest appearance of Camille Contreras, a few songs, the revelation of a new experimental direction and some more stuff.
- Hello NOVELISTS FR! It’s a massive pleasure to have you here as you’re also one of my favorite bands. So you’re opening 2020 with new record C’EST LA VIE due on 24th January via Arising Empire/SharpTone Records. Your fans were very thrilled to listen to your new record, so what more do they need to know about this album?
Hello and thank you for the questions! we are extremely excited about the album finally being out in the world, it has been a very challenging record to create and will probably be our last traditional album!
- The sound portrayed in the record is revolving around your technical, melodic and progressive blueprint, with plenty of catchiness and a wider melodic approach. In what measure do you agree with this statement and what was the writing process approached?
I am not sure I agree with the “wider melodic approach”, I feel like we’ve always written melodic music, other than that, I would say it’s a pretty accurate statement! The writing process was very enjoyable for once haha. We wrote and recorded the whole album in our own studio in the basement of the house we live in, which made it a very easy going and streamline process!
- Your new record comes with four guest appearances either contributing to the melodic aspect – with Camille Contreras featured on the title track – or to its fierceness – with Florent Salfati featured on Kings Of Ignorance. There are also Michael Hirst on Rain and Aaron Marshall on Human Condition. I would love to discuss with you the experience you had by featuring one of those artist and how the collaborations was set up in the first place.
Camille came in the studio for 3 days, originally we were just going to have her sing harmonies across the whole album, to give it a lot of dimensions.
After those 3 days of work, we realized we were in love with her voice and decided we needed to have a spot for her in the record where she could be the lead singer, and that might be the best decision we made for the album!
- Lead single HEAD RUSH has been chosen as a forerunner. What was the mindset behind choosing this song in particular to anticipate the record and drop a video?
We just loved the song, really. Honestly, I’m not sure it is the best single we could have picked but it didn’t really matter, we wanted the song to be the focus of the record!
- What song do you consider to be the heaviest, the most melodic and the most experimental on this record?
The heaviest to me would be Modern Slave, the most melodic would be Rain V 2.0 – which you will get to hear soon – the most experimental would be Somebody Else!
- How long have you worked on the album and what were the challenges experienced in the writing and recording stages, if any?
28 months have passed since the release of “Noir” until the release of “C’est La Vie” making it the longest time we’ve spent on a record. We just wanted it to be pretty close to perfect and that required spending days on some choruses until we were 100% happy with them. Sometimes it’s been about deleting a whole track and re-writing it all.
- Is there any soundscape, new experimental direction or influence you may want to undertake at some point in the future?
Yes, I think we have said a lot of what we wanted to say in our current genre and we want to explore more from now on, which also explains why we don’t want to release any traditional 10 tracks album any longer, we want to explore new music and new ways of releasing it too, keeping it exciting!
- What songs have been jammed the most by your fans during your last tours off records NOIR and SOUVENIRS?
I believe our song “Gravity” is a fan favourite! also “The light, the Fire” was a big success!
- Now that we know you have many surprises in store, what else can we expect from NOVELISTS FR in 2020, if you can tell us?
We hope people stay open minded because we’re about to embark on a very different chapter of Novelists FR.
Thank you so much for your time NOVELISTS FR and all the best for the release of your new amazing record. We will catch up with your shows in Europe!
Novelists FR – C’est La Vie tracklisting:
1. Somebody Else
2. Deep Blue
4. Modern Slave
5. C’est La Vie feat. Camille Contreras
6. Head Rush
7. Kings Of Ignorance feat. Florent Salfati
8. Rain feat. Michael Hirst
9. Human Condition feat. Aaron Marshall
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