Space-rocked and sci-twisted French duo Discodeine (consisting of Pilooski and Pentile) happily time-travels into the strange and soulful no-man’s land of future disco which is occupied by only a few machine-funking creatures whose style and attitude oscillate between the ludicrous and trendy. Far away from our trivial planet pop, disco and krautrock sounds get warped into another dimension creating a homogenous, yet unique mixture that enchants with timeless grooviness, downtempo atmospheres and modern song writing.
Luring but not sexy, rakish yet unconcerned, delirious but not obvious are the trademarks of Discodeine, whose project kicked off in 2007, around the same time Pilooski published his first collection of Dirty Edits Vol. I – A Collection Of Dirty Classics Selected By Dirty Sound System. Being part of the Dirty Sound System, and as an avid rare music lover and recycler, he elegantly scavenged outer musical dimensions to recover some weird-ass gems, among them music by Pipilotti Rist and The Human Beinz, and remixed them into glamorous contemporary chic floor companions. Remixes for LCD Sounds System, Mystery Jets and Frankie Valli were also part of the protocol, and Dirty Edits Vol. 2 following swiftly in 2008, to much acclaim, added even more French remix craft mastery to the bill. Krikor and Joakim were on duty as well.
The other vital ingredient of the magical duo, Pentile, formed part of Octet and France Copland. Teaming up in the studio,they unleashed their whole power. Their project involves wine, tattoos, Ennio Morricone’s string section, a lot of fun playing around with ring modulators, and blood – all of which was then turned into full-grown tracks. Their self-titled debut album, released this month on Pschent, unites the Discodeine highlights previously released on Dirty, and features collaborations with Jarvis Cocker, Matias Aguayo and Baxter Dury. We bug Pilooski Q&A style and find out it’s all not as future disco as we think.
Discodeine sounds like a combination of cough syrup and, ahem, disco. How did you come up with this infernal concoction?
It’s a thing of balance: a dose of funk, experimentation, all wrapped up in a pop format.
How many bottles of Chianti did you have to drink to make this album? Or in other words: How did this album come about?
The album is just the logical progression of a few 12” we did. We didn’t have to do it, but then again, we like the idea of it.
How long did it take to make?
About a year.
The album sounds like you do not care at all about anything, the only thing that counts is that you are happy…
That’s right, we and the machines are a happy family. We all jam together and then edit the whole thing.
Between the two of you, who is responsible for what in the studio?
We both do compositions and arrangements; Benjamin is more on the textures, I, Cédric, do the mixing.
Do you play/perform live as well?
We’re working on it at the moment.
Could you play Air or Daft Punk for me, please?
We think you’ve come to the wrong party…
What do you do apart from making music?
Breathe, eat, sometimes we get some sleep.
And when you’re making music as Pilooski and Pentile… What are you both busy with right now…?
I’m producing bands at the moment, one is called Tristesse Contemporaine, the other one is called Turzi. Benjamin is working on a solo project on a more experimental trip.
How did you end up on Pschent as opposed to Dirty where you previously released your records?
Dirty licensed it to Pschent, as a means to expand, I suppose.
What is the club and music situation in Paris Disco City? Still as baguettecore as it used to be?
Yes, it’s still very baguettecore, the only difference is that now we also get the butter to go with it.
As influences, you cite Richard Gotainer, CAN and Messiaen which is quite a bizarre mixture of weird-ass krautrock, experimental music and trash! Tell us more about these fascinations… how did you get into that sort of music?
We usually have a fascination for dead composers.
Are you record collectors?
We don’t collect records, what’s the use?
Do you feel some kind of mental brotherhood with the Emperor Machine?
Would you feel comfortable to present yourself in a world-wide future disco context or is Discodeine just a fun project?
We don’t really know what future disco is, do you?
What is the future of future disco?
And your future vision of Discodeine?
Less and less future disco.
How did you get to make music with Jarvis Cocker?
He got in touch with Dirty, I did a remix for him, we then proposed this track to him as we were looking for a pop feature.
And Baxter Dury?
We are fans of his music, so we called him.
What does Discodeine look like? A lot of disco sports a very strong visual identity including planets, triangles, and anything that has a parapsychological feel to it.
We’re more into 19th century paintings to be honest.
Is it true that you have “Discodeine is hot” tattooed on your bottoms? And that you met at the gym?
Yes, we also mixed our blood.
What does Discodeine taste like?
Sweet and sour, what would you expect?
Like teen spirit.