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to scrape the sky : a very poetic idea isn't it?
Skyscraper is my solo project. I sing, play guitar. I've been writing songs since I was 16. I've been in rock bands between 15 and 22, then I decided to do my own thing.
My music mixes elements of different styles : indie pop, electronica, rock, folk...
Lyrics, in french or english, are inspired by personal stories, with shadows waiting to be filled by the listener's imagination.
My aim is to touch audiences, but also to surprise them.
...................the beginning (...->2003)
As a teenager, I played guitar and sang in various bands, and at the same time started to experiment on a 4-track tape machine and to write electonic music with a computer.
I started to write songs around 1996 (at 16), then began to record them at home between 2000 and 2003. A set of songs took form, unveiled in some acoustic gigs. A decisive experience happened in the summer 2001, when I went to Germany alone with a guitar, performing songs in cafés. Playing for a foreign audience allowed me to explore my voice and songs.
In 2002-2003, I deciced to play solo with electronic, because it gives a certain freedom on stage, it allows to play with a wide range of sounds.
First parisian solo shows under the name Skyscraper, alterning acoustic and electronic songs.
A first album : "The Bontempi Sessions" is released, gathering tracks written, for the most between 2000 and 2004. Lyrics are mainly in french, with a very poppy, colored flavour. Yet the mood becomes more tense in darker or melancholic songs ("Work", "Ville").
Several gigs in Paris, with other bands (Nodata, Semyorka…) A date for a UK festival (Airfusion, Newton Abbot, august 2005)
I also wrote music for short films and made remixes for other artists.
A lot of gigs. More than 150 people sign up for the newsletter.
New tracks are written, with a darker feeling than on "The Bontempi Sessions".
An EP is released late 2006: "The Ministry of Winter", which receives critical acclaim.
Skyscraper receives a prize from Paris' city town hall : « Paris Young Talents »
Second LP "Wasted Waves of Love" is completed during spring : darker, more introspective than the first one. With this record, I wanted to move away from "french pop" and explore more abstract sounds (the result is sometimes described as cold-wave). Lyrics, this time mainly in english, deal with the fact that in the modern world, attempts to be understood or accepted are often hopeless ; that is the meaning of the record's title.
During the process of recording, I went through personal problems, and working on sad tunes was not helping. So this was a hard time, but I managed to complete this record in order to move to something else. That year I decided to play less gigs, partly because I needed time to finish the record, and partly because I didn't feel like playing gloomy songs over and over again. But in the end, I was proud of the record and continued to promote it (distribution, radio, webzines...).
The track The Ministry of Winter gets playlisted by www.lagrosseradio.com
I also wrote music for "Le Paradis", an experimental video by Gilles Lacombade.
"Wasted Waves of Love" is distributed by FNAC store in Paris, and gets excellent reviews (see here)
Following the hard times of 2007, I was on the verge of burying Skyscraper, but the good feedback made me want to continue this adventure.
In may, I hired musicians (violin, flute, bassoon, drum machine) for a special show mixing classical sounds and electronica.
Late 2008, I started to work on new tracks.
Early 2009, I moved from Paris to Troyes (in the east of France).
I started recording Skyscraper's 3rd album. It will be more positive and extrovert than "Wasted Waves of Love" ; mixing the psychedelic style of the first album with the more mature side of the second record. This time, there will be a balance between songs in english and french.
For this record, I want to take time to have a result as perfect as possible. I experiment different arrangements and recording techniques ; the tracks keep evolving, and several versions are recorded.
I played some other live dates that year, looking for good conditions rather than accumulating dates in small cafés, like in the years 2004-2006.
I also worked with parisian bands as a live sound technician (Patchwörc(k), Kayenn...)
A lot of time is devoted to the 3rd record. The new track "Nothing but time" is online (on myspace) early this year.
I played some shows to promote the physical distribution of "Wasted Waves of Love" in the Troyes area.
Since early 2010, this record can also be downloaded from most online shops (www.amazon.fr...)
A backing band is hired in may / june for some live shows.
I was also approched by indie electro-pop parisian band Pique la Lune ! to record their first album. Sessions took place in the summer and mixing in the fall. (released early 2011).
Most of the year is spent finishing the 3rd record, which will be available at the very beginning of 2012.
Some more recordings from january till march (vocal takes...), then some months of mixing (march -> august) And from september to december, mastering and artwork.
2 gigs : solo in march (electronica/folk) in Bagnolet near Paris ; then as a trio (rock) in St-Dizier (east of France) in november. It seems I finally found a reliable live team with François (bass) and Aline (drums). More to come in 2012.
Pre-order the new album (2012) : http://skyscraper1.bandcamp.com/
The 3rd album is finaly ready !