JE T’AIME have made a big impact since they released their first single “The Sound” and their self titled album in 2019. With their guitar fused with synth led style of gothic rock, they dropped the second album PASSIVE in February of 2022. My official word is get it because it is good. There is dboy on vocals/programming/synths/bass/guitar/ bass with Crazy Z. programming/synths/bass/guitar and Tall Bastard on guitar/bass. Sooo, we thought it might be time to get to know these Parisians a little better and what better way than to ask a few questions.
And for the record, Mike Oldfield’s Tubular Bells is dangerous and alluring Tall Bastard. Take all due care and precaution and immerse yourself in the sexy juggernaut beast that is JE T’AIME.
Welcome JE T’AIME down the rabbit hole, into our boudoir, all black and velvety! Just ignore the cobwebs….
You are based in Paris, so how did JE T’AIME come into being?
dBoy: The idea of forming a band came to us during a party, while drinking an excellent French red wine. We had been talking about music for hours when we thought that instead of talking about it we should make it. The main idea was to make the gothic audience in Europe dance. “The sound” was the first song written by the band
Why the name JE T’AIME? Is it a bit weird having people tell you they love you all the time?
dBoy: It was at this same party that we came up with the name of the band. In the early hours of the morning, after finishing The Sound, we were so happy, and drunk, that we couldn’t stop saying: I love you, mate.
Crazy Z. : and the funny thing is that people can’t stop to say “I love JE T’AIME !”. Is not it meta ?
Many people outside of France will say they don’t know any French gothic/darkwave/coldwave bands until you start listing acts like Corpus Delecti, Brotherhood Of Pagan, Asylum, Cemetery Girls etc. Can you tell us about the alternative scene in Paris?
dBoy: Today the French scene is full of great bands. I’m thinking of Blind Delon, Vox Low, Team Ghost, Jessica93 or Rendez-vous for example. But this was not the case a few years ago, the French rock scene was really bad, except for a few rare exceptions. It seems like we’ve learned to finally play music properly, or at least copy the English a bit better.
Crazy Z.: I think France is more open to alternative music and alternative underworld since recently. We had great bands before, you mentioned them, but they just were under the radar. Large platforms like Spotify, Deezer and Apple Music have their disadvantages, but also they help in sharing more easily music between countries.
You gained a very strong fan base after the first album, which was self titled in 2019. What was it like for you to have that sort of reception and did it put pressure on the band to follow up with an equally impressive album?
dBoy: It’s true that we were lucky to receive a good reception with our first record, and so much the better. I don’t think we were under that much pressure to write the next record. We had a lot more time because of the pandemic, which is why we decided to release a double album. We wrote so many songs that we liked that it was too hard to choose which ones to put on the record and which ones to throw away. But to be quite honest with you, yes, the second album is a rather difficult exercise.
Tall Bastard: The pressure didn’t come so much from our audience but more from us. To deliver the same sound without repeating ourselves. But also to make sure that everyone of us are happy about the songs, hopping that they are good enough so that we don’t have to compromise.
Crazy Z. : To be honest I can’t imagine that each new album will not come with some kind of pressure. I often hear guys with some bullshit theories saying “you will see, the second one is the hardest” or “the third one is the one which confirm or destroy a band !”. Come on man. Each album, from the very first one to the true last is a new adventure, and we have to put more and more efforts each time in it.
2022 has seen the release of this much vaunted second album, PASSIVE and it really is a gem you should be proud of. Why was there a three year break between these two albums?
dBoy: Oh, thanks you. We wanted to take our time, everything goes so fast these days, it’s also good to leave a little time for the audience, isn’t it? It’s good to give the audience time to get into the songs. And then there was this damn pandemic that slowed down the whole world. No more concerts, no more meeting the public, no more parties where we all danced together. The only thing left to do was to write music, so we kept on writing, hoping to be able to release this record in a better time.
Crazy Z. : It really was no break for us, as we spent the 3 whole years in working on it. It is just the time we need to create, record, produce, prepare it. Moreover it is a double album, the first part is PASSIVE, and the second part AGRESSIVE is foreseen in October.
PASSIVE will be followed up by the next album already titled AGGRESSIVE. Can you tell us about this next album and how is relates to PASSIVE?
dBoy: Passive-aggressive behaviour is a set of so-called passive attitudes that indirectly express a hidden hostility that is not openly assumed or remains unconscious to the subject. Each disc contains ten songs about our hero from the first album. He has grown up but is still as stupid as ever. This whole story, this trilogy, is about the Peter Pan complex and the difficulty of being a good lover, a good husband and a good father. The strangest thing about it is that none of the three of us are fathers. But… we do have great sex, apparently.
Tall Bastard: For me this is one album. The songs were written during the same period . We put out two albums cause there was not enough space in one record for 20 songs.
The tentative release date for AGGRESSIVE is around October, so is this album mostly finished?
dBoy: Yes, this double album has been completely finished for six months now.
Crazy Z. : How frustrating is it to have it since months and to not release it! But yes. Both have been pro-cessed and finished in the studio together.
If you had to pick a song off the latest album that you felt epitomized JE T’AIME or is a favourite, which one would it be?
dBoy: I love them all, really. I’m not saying that to sound pretentious, it’s just the pure truth. As far as the sound of the band goes, I think of Lonely Days because this song is the sound of JE T’AIME.
Tall Bastard: recording and playing a song that feels like a pornography song was an old dream of mine so i will say Another day in hell.
Crazy Z. : Well, I probably have a special feeling for Stupid Songs. That makes us a real Trinity with different minds, and that is our strength.
What bands or acts first got you into the scene?
dBoy: Michael Jackson was my first crush, I was living with my parents in Atlanta (Georgia) when he released his album Thriller, what madness. As far as wanting to perform with a band, it’s definitely Gun’s N Roses. Duff Mac Kagan, my god. I immediately wanted to play on a huge stage so I could run around on it with my bass on my lap.
Tall Bastard: I’m not sure I want to talk about my first crushes because they are honestly terrible. But everything changed when I heard Shake The Disease from DM. My first musical shock. The Cure came two or three years later with Holy Hour and its bass line. The song that make me want to play music. I then learn to play Boys Don’t Cry and Where Is My Mind from The Pixies and i considered myself a mu-sician haha! Crazy Z. : I’m a little younger than those two old geezers. My slaps in the face were Marilyn Manson and Smashing Pumpkins. It makes me learn the guitar too. And it makes me learn it so badly..
Who or what are you listening to now?
dBoy: Our album PASSIVE, on repeat, to learn the lyrics. I’m getting tired of it. And I really liked Anila’s latest album “The Loom”, and Vlure’s latest EP “Euphoria”.
Tall Bastard: Mike Oldfield! Is that dangerous?
Crazy Z. : I am discovering MXMS. Their song Gravedigger is turning me mad.
Going forward, what does the future hold for JE T’AIME such as recording, tours etc?
dBoy: We are hoping for as many concerts as possible, even if the situation in Europe becomes somewhat unstable. We are also preparing the release of our fourth video clip of the album, the song “Dirty Tricks”, directed by Quentin Caffier.
Crazy Z. : We have around 20 gigs to comes, from France, Belgium, Switzerland to Germany, Austria. You can check all of them on our website jetaime-music.com. And we are on the highway to the second part, AGGRESSIVE. But keep listening in PASSIVE until then, they are strongly linked.
Thank you for talking with Onyx and we can’t wait for AGGRESSIVE.
Crazy Z. Thank you mate!