Hi folks, today I have the privilege to present you the outcome of a short but interesting conversation I had with the two fine gentlemen behind French extreme act Belladone. Don’t forget to check out the links at the end of the interview.
DP: Lets start with introducing the band to the people reading this. Could you tell us a few things about the band’s history?
B: First of all, thanks for your interest in our project Alex, it means a lot to us. The band was created in 2011, the 22nd of december, on winter soltice. I guess that makes us look more “trve”… Then we started to jam again and again, and we liked the way it sounded. Basically love, exitment and weed did the job. As Jeremy and I always loved to do everything by our own, we started the recording of 6 songs we did and made the production ourselves. The same story goes again for the split we made with Kapytaen in 2014. But this time we wanted to have some physical material, that’s why we made a tape which includes “Ophiuchus” and the 4 songs of the split. Some talented friends helped us doing this, Domi of Hackebeil Records, Raphaël Houée and Hugo Charpentier for the designs, the screen printed posters and the booklet. We made a few gigs in France, Switzerland and Germany to support this release, really good times! Finally, we had some new songs ready to be recorded in 2016 and Black Knight Satellite gave us a call to make a tape split with them, that was a big yes!
DP: There is a growing number of bands in Europe and the U.S. that combine hardcore with black metal. Do you identify yourselves with this wave of relatively new bands? What is your take on this genre mixing?
Commissaire: No, I don’t really identify myself in this scene, as I write different kind of music throughout my other projects. I always loved to include some other kind of riffs in my songs, just because I like it, it could be black metal, grindcore, screamo, blues, anything. To be honest I don’t listen to these new bands a lot, looks like i’m stuck in 2009…!
Jeremy: I don’t really know if Belladone belongs to any particular scene, we always feel free to listen and to write the music we love.
DP: France has a distinctive modern hardcore scene. What is your relationship with that? Were you influenced from other French bands, local or otherwise?
Commissaire: I kinda feel like everyone tend to have a quite similar sound between each, maybe that’s what you mean by “distinctive” ? Ahah. In a way we’re this little black duck who cannot be part of the family. I don’t feel like we’re playing the same game, these guys tend to be big and very active, which is not really our state of mind. We’re too punk for that maybe…
Jeremy: The French scene is indeed growing a lot, and this is a good thing ! I’d also say that Comity and Warfuck are the two main bands that inspire me.
DP: What metal genres/bands do you guys like?
B: We’re both really fan of Iron Maiden. Then quite everything in the large family of extreme music, which means to us, for example : grindcore (Pig Destroyer, Napalm Death, Cephalic Carnage, Infanticide…) fastcore (All the Leeds crew: Famine, The Afternoon Gentlemen, Ona Snop…), powerviolence/emoviolence (Circle Takes the Square, Orchid, Ampere, Jeromes Dream, portaits of past..), crust (lots of “DIS” bands, His Hero Is Gone…), death (Dying Fetus, Immolation, Cannibal Corpse, the classic shit that never changes but always amuse us), noise and curiosity (Kulara, Merzbow…), hardcore (Kickback..), hip hop (Dälek, Madlib…) jazz and classical music… Don’t say we’re not open minded after that ahah!
DP: About a month ago you released a split with Black Knight Satellite. I think that your side is much more “mathy” than your first release “Ophiuchus” for example. Would you like to tell us a bit about that release?
Commissaire: We wrote 8 songs in total and put 4 on the split. As “Ophiuchus” was recorded 5 years ago, I guess our songs came out naturally, if you listen to the split with Kapytaen you can already hear an evolution compared to “Ophiuchus”. So I guess the next release will also be different ! It always depends on the moment we write the song ahah. But “mathy” is quite a compliment, as I’m not that good at my instrument to perform in a proper math band… We always try to improve ourselves, trying new things, new breaks, new ambiances, so we can turn our back to the past songs and head forward with clean ideas.
DP: I’ve seen that you are involved in a diy collective with a few other awesome bands like Michel Anoia, Warfuck and Lovgun. Could you tell us a few things about that project and its goal/purpose?
Commissaire: With our collective “D7C”, the first idea was simply to book grind and fast shows in Lyon, as we loved that scene but the bands never played in here before. As Ugo from Michel Anoia, Nik from Warfuck and me created Lovgun around 2010, we toured and met some friends and decided to invite the bands we love to play at home. Then more bands contacted us which is really good! Since we love doing it ourselves, putting up shows in different places is quite challenging and that’s we like to do! We also are our own label, which means we tend to do everything by our own, recording, mixing, music videos, posters…
DP: What are your plans for the future?
Commissaire: Jeremy is about to have his third little boy, so we’re more focused on writing new material which would lead us to a new 12’’ LP and a great tour! And maybe some gigs here and there, because that’s what we love to do the most, playing live, meet new friends and have a good time!