In 2014, Flavien Berger got himself noticed with the release of two EPs: his first record “Glitter Glaze” and “Mars Balnéaire”, followed by his first album “Léviathan”, a fairground water ride with extreme ups-and-downs, veering from the water’s surface to its mysterious abyss, just one year later. Meanwhile he also composed for films; In 2013, he scored the soundtrack for “Mala Mala”, a film which dived into the depths of Puerto Rico’s LGBT community. He worked on all of Céline Devaux’s films, leading him to write the OST of short films “Le Repas Dominical” (winner of Best Animated Short Film at the Césars) and “Gros Chagrin” (Winner of the Golden Lion for Best Short Film at the Venice Film Festival). More recently, he started taking part in meta-cinema games; a unique and ephemeral cinematic experience in the form of a single-shot, acted and filmed at the Paris Opéra Bastille and livestreamed to the internet. Berger’s second album “Contre-Temps” was released on September 28th via Pan European Recording.
1: Earth is moving at 107 218,8km/h while I’m writing these lines.
2: I feel so lucky to be able to see sunsets.
3: Love is a cloud.
1. What is the biggest inspiration for your music?
I don’t know if there is a hierarchy in inspiration, as phenomenons overlap and get mixed together. I would say that mind travelling is important, that music allows to travel. I want landscapes or situations to appear in the mind of the listener, as a personalized movie.
2. How and when did you get into making music?
When I was a teenager and I discovered a video game which consisted in composing electronic music. I would play to this game and learn how to make music at the same time.
3. What are 5 of your favourite albums of all time?
“Voodoo” from D’Angelo. Too hard to find any other.
4. What do you associate with Berlin?
Edamame beans, thoses greens beans served as snacks in Japanese restaurants. I lived 8 months in Berlin as a student, and I had a rituel with edamame. I was very lonely at that time, and I would make a lot of music on my computer. It’s also in that time that I discovered autotune.
5. What’s your favourite place in your town?
Any place where I can enjoy sunsets.
6. If there was no music in the world, what would you do instead?
I would make movies.
7. What was the last record/music you bought?
“Mister Heartbreak” from Laurie Anderson.
8. Who would you most like to collaborate with?
9. What was your best gig (as performer or spectator)?
Mdou Moctar at Leysin, in Hautes Fréquences Festival.
10. How important is technology to your creative process?
Technology helps me to produce the music I compose, computers and machines help me to find a personal sound, my own texture. As any other tool, technology allows accidents, and I find it interesting to use it.
11. Do you have siblings and how do they feel about your career/art?
I am wary of the idea of career, because this logic implies growth, which I dislike, as if it needed to get bigger and bigger every time. I try to make projects in which I have a real interest, to work with people I love.
Flavien Berger’s latest album “Contre-Tempes” is available in all formats via Pan European Recording’s Bandcamp. Catch Flavien playing Berlin 19th March 2019 at Lido, and Köln the day after – on 20th – at YUCA!
Photo © Juliette Gelli, Maya de Mondragon