Kaya, Kilo, Lilyboy, Pépé, Pietre and Soubri are the music band from France, Deluxe Moustache or simply Deluxe. Based in the Aix-en-Provence area of Marseilles, France, Deluxe have been in the musical setting since 2007 and have released two EPs and two studio albums, (their latest LP was “Stachelight” (2016)).
The motivation to contact them was their new single “Tum Rakak”, a smooth and special song, which was released in July, 2017. The line-up of the band and the use of many special, different musical instruments were another factor that led us to ask for this interview.
Deluxe with exuberant enthusiasm and inexhaustible humor talked to us about what the mustache means to them, but also about their background. Personal musical influences and collaborations with great names of the world music scene, like Nneka, became a subject of discussion, while their response to their future plans and their visit to Greece was also very interesting!
Read everything that we discussed with Deluxe, through the interview they gave to SounDarts.gr!
A few days ago you released the video clip for “Tum Rakak”, which became the reason for us to recommend you to the Greek audience in one of our articles. What does “Tum Rakak” mean for you?
«Tum Rakak» is a phonetic interpretation of the sound the guitare makes in this song! And then someone told us, it ment «tender belly» in their language, we believed him and loved this title even more! We’re so glad its video inspired you to share it, we were afraid of its simplicity!
Your album “Stachelight” includes English and French songs (“À l’heure où”, “Bonhomme”). Why did you choose to create a bilingual album?
English is the language we intuitively choose to write in because we mostly listen to english music. But we’re french and have lived our whole lives in France, so French naturally makes its way into our album. Of course, IAM, who we’ve been listening to since we’ve been teenagers, are simply the greatest french rap band EVER !!! Having them in «A l ‘heure oû » is a kid’s dream come true!
Stating the obvious, men of Deluxe (Mustache) love the mustache. What is the connection between this and the band, apart from the stylistic one?
Without their mustaches, I wouldn’t have had an opening line to talk to them randomly in the streets! At first it was a solidarity thing: because one the boys doesn’t have any hair growing ANYWHERE else but right there under the nose, we adopted it so he didn’t have to be alone and different, we kept it through out the years as a lucky charm!
Tell us a few words about who Deluxe are and what their musical background is.
The drummer and bassist have known each other since they were 6 years old! Before being a bandsmen-ship it’s a friendship story! Two of us have studied jazz at the conservatory, and to this day we still seek the advice of a great teacher who’s been there for us since the beginning! But we’re mostly self-taught musicians. We’re very proud to come from « the streets », where we busked for years: it’s the best way to practice a show when no one wants to book you!
Percussion, spirits and strings included in your mini-orchestra. Under what circumstances did you end up in the form you are today?
On the last album we treated ourselves by inviting musicians from the previously mentioned conservatory! Usually Pépé, our official saxophonist but multi-instrumentist is our one man orchestra, playing all the horns on his own, and we use MIDI for violins.
You have managed to combine groove, electro, and funky musical elements in a project, for example on your recent album, “Stachelight”. What are your musical influences?
We individually have our own different favorites, from french variety, rap, jazz, post core skeleton, but our common ground is definitely hip hop and soul, like The Roots!
Collaborations are part of your work and in “Stachelight” you worked with Nneka. What will you always remember from this collaboration?
We met almost of the artists we collaborated with on festivals! They’re the best chance we got to meet artists we’ve been listening to since we were kids! At Printemps de Bourges, we came off the stage after our soundcheck and as Nneka was walking by, she said «that was lovely» with a thumbs up towards us! We were psyched, and managed to gather the guts to go talk to her about our upcoming album, and invite her to check out our show that following evening. When we regained the backstage, she had left a note with her email! Crazy!
Are there any other artists you would like to collaborate with in the future?
Bill Withers?! Can anybody hear me?
What is your relationship with your audience? What brings you closer to it: live performances or social media and why?
Our live performances are all about exchanging with the audience, their energy is our fuel: when we do 5 shows in a row and our bodies grow numb, a receptive audience brings us back to life! We realize today that as «not signed on a major label artists », without Facebook we probably wouldn’t exist outside of our city, since we’re neither on TV nor much on the radio. Social media is an alternative option for now!
Greece, like most other countries, is a meeting point for artists. Have you ever visited our country? What are your thoughts about Greece?
One of us has been on holiday and fell in love with the beautiful Serifos? I must admit I don’t know much about Greece other than the obvious, we hope to tour near you some day!
Your last album was released a year and a half ago, what are your next business plans?
We’re putting the tour on pause to take care of personal things like plastic surgery (Liliboy is on the waiting list for a dolphin’s fin transplant), circus school (Pépé would like to train small insects) and maybe come back with a new album!
What is the “Deluxe” motto and what are your hopes for the future?
« Si ça t’a plu, reviens moustachu » is our french motto, it means if you liked it, come back with it (the mustache of course!)
Thank you very much for this interview and we wish to see you live in Greece soon!
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