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M X Zdar to infinity

In a conversation, more than an interview, singer Matthieu Chedid, aka M, and producer Philippe Zdar, tell each other about M's new album: « Lettre infinie » . A record that resonates with the private life of Matthieu , becoming a dad for the second time and their friendship that goes back to the album « Je dis aime » . Over the course of the discussion, they wonder about the creative act and the music as a universal vibration and means of survival. It was also about permaculture, the magic of an old-style recording studio. Not to mention some anecdotes featuring Stevie Wonder, Pharrell Williams or Toumani Diabaté ... precious moments, stolen while the album « Lettre infinie » was not yet finished - Isabelle Cerboneschi, Paris. pictures: Michèle Bloch-Stuckens and Buonomo & Cometti.

April 30th 2019

Matthieu Chedid

xmatthieu1
Matthieu Chedid and Philippe Zdar. Photo: @Buonomo & Cometti.

In the video announcing the January 25 release of "Infinite Letter", the last album of M, the alias of Matthieu Chedid, we see the singer in the recording studio Motorbass producer Philippe Zdar. This is neither the first nor the last. Their friendship is born from their shared passion for music and chiseled words. When we know each other at the end of our fingertips, it helps. There is a confidence that no longer needs to be given, a respect that does not need to say its name.

Last fall, at a friend's dinner where they were both present, I asked Matthieu Chedid if he would agree to give me an interview about his upcoming album. He agreed, but on one condition: to lead it with two voices, with Philippe Zdar. I said yes of course, without thinking. Zdar, his real name, Philippe Cerboneschi , is considered by Vanity Fair magazine as one of the most influential French XNUMX. He became a sound engineer at XNUMX, worked with Gainsbourg, Etienne Daho, Prince, Pharrell Williams, Cat Power, the Beastie Boys, Franz Ferdinand, ... The list of stars whose voice passed under his fingers is so long that I do not know it. He's half of the Motorbass group, the Funk Mob and the Cassius band, but above all, he's my brother. And how to interview without getting to private? But Matthieu Chedid had his reasons: at the heart of this friendship are the keys of these works co-created by two artists who have been working together for more than twenty years. And these keys, they had the elegance of my entrusting them.

Matthieu Chedid is the singer we love to love. It is he and his double, M, sweet and tender character, as if fallen from the moon or this beautiful country of a childhood not lost. He who is believed on his word when he says "Without a word, everything is said. Infinitely and for life". Son of the singer Louis Chedid, grandson of the poet Andrée Chedid, the artist was able to draw from these genealogical sons the best, embracing his path he draws in this silky voice that sometimes flies so high. He has created a dreamlike world where you want to curl up. His last album is about love, by the way. When we met, he was preparing to be a father for the second time. It showed in his voice. Since our meeting, Tao was born. He is the brother of Billie, the daughter of Matthieu Chedid, who sings on his latest album-declaration of love.

The interview took place in the recording studio Motorbass, a few days before finishing the album. A fabulous chance, because there were still things not quite finished, being tweaked, all happening that day.

Philippe Zdar: This piece we hear is fabulous! This is one of my favorites. It's a real single!

IC:Which one? PZ: Uh ... « Je t’aime ... » Matthieu Chedid: « Adieu mon amour ". What I love about Philippe is that he changes the titles of all songs. There is one called "Ma thérapie", he calls it "Planetaire", while the word planet is not even in the song!

PZ: That's because it reminds me of my hairdresser when I lived in Aix-les-Bains! ... Which by the way was not called 'Planet'Hair' but 'Diminu'tiff! (Laughs)

How can we predict that a song will become a single?
PZ: Because we want to listen to it many times.

What story did you want to tell in this new album?
MC: Already that's the story we live with Philippe. Since practically my debut - my first album was home made - but my second, " Je dis aime" (released in 1999, ed), was marked by the sound of Philippe since he mixed it. Every time we work together, things happen that are pretty strong.

How did you meet each-other?
MC:
We had a woman in common.

But not at the same time?
MC: Almost…
PZ: We were separating her and me. One day the phone rings, I answer, I hear a voice saying, "Hello, I'd like to talk to C." I pass the phone to C. and when she hangs up, I ask her who it was. She answers, "It's Matthieu ..." And just the way she told me, I knew he was going to be her new guy. A week later, she left ......
MC: There was a rather phenomenal contrast between the two of us, though. We are two extremely different personalities. And even more at the time.
PZ: C. did not stop telling us that we should work together and we made " Machistador " in this studio. We met here..
MC: What's funny is that this new album is going to be called " Lettre infinie ", like the letter M. And I have the feeling, for a lot of reasons, that it's a very aligned record that brings me back to the time when we made the albums " Je dis aime" or " Qui de nous deux". With Philippe, we always live great musical and artistic encounters and I already know in advance, it may be presumptuous, that this record is a great appointment in my life.

And not only in your professional life?
MC: No. "Infinite Letter" resonates with the infinite Being. But I'm going to be a daddy for the second time: a little boy will arrive exactly at the same time as the release of this record, which will also be a story of transmission, like « Qui de nous deux », which was for my girl.
PZ: While you're talking, I'm realising that between the creation of all your albums, you were the guitarist of all Cassius albums, the band I created with Hubert Blanc-Francard. Each time we called you to come and make a guitar you said "yes".

There is a synchronicity that I find surprising between you two: the previous album of Matthew, "Lamomali", was an ode to a happy utopian country. Cassius' latest album, "Ibifornia", also told a happy utopia. They came out at the same time. What were these worlds you were calling for?
MC:
: I think we are both lovers of absolute beauty and by music, we invent dream worlds.
PZ: We dream of an ideal world where absolute art reigns, music as it was done in the 1970's and we try to make it last and to be together. Today, there are many people who make music without ever seeing each other, never meeting, never having lunch or dinner together. And the album comes out of the very marketed computer. We are in love with the very strong feelings we can find in recording studios, which are pretty magical places. But I do not know if "Ibifornia" was the ideal world that I placed my hopes in ...
MC: It was still a fusion between Ibiza and California and "Lamomali" it was a mix between Paris and Bamako. There is a lot of unconsciousness in all this.

Was this idea of ​​mixing two worlds wanted from the start?
PZ:
We find an idea and we justify it by doing it. The message about miscegenation was much clearer in the album "Lamomali" because there was a real mix of cultures and musicians. But it's true that we both dream of an ideal world. Maybe we are looking for a child's world?
MC: There is something of the order of sacralisation in the ideal word: it is the idea above the idea. It's a necessity for us to make music. And when it becomes a necessity, it has a certain nobility. We do not make the right music ... I was going to say, to flirt with girls. Nothing is harmless, everything has a function.
PZ: It's a way of surviving in this world that does not fit me. It's been twenty years since I have a TV. It was initially a political and citizen approach. But I realize that we are in 2018, that everyone has a TV on thier phone, and that all the efforts I made are crushed. Making music is a way to make a living of course, but above all, it is to breathe. And with Matthew, we have that in common. You remember being called the Guitar man in the beginning?
MC: I had forgotten.

Why this nickname of the Guitar Man?
PZ: Because he played all the time, everywhere! It reminds me of an anecdote that had happened at Marcadet studio. Stevie Wonder had recorded "I just called to say I love you", with Jean-Philippe Bonichon, the sound engineer who gave me my first chance. They left the studio at six in the morning and they waited for a taxi. But at the exit of Marcadet, there was a small red door with a very small studio all rotten which played a lot of zou. Two guys were smoking outside. They recognised Stevie wonder. They ask him if he could play something on their song. Stevie Wonder answers of course! He made the taxi wait, he went in and he starts to play the harmonica ... Matthew, that was him! We were walking down the street, guys were stopping to ask him to play guitar on their song, he said "yes of course" and he was going back to the studio. That's why we called him the Guitar Man. He was playing guitars all the time, without being paid. And C. his partner, was Madame Sofa . She fell asleep while playing and woke up when it was over.

It reminds me of the phrase in your grandmother's poem that you put on your last Lamomali album: " Toi/ Qui que tu sois!/Je te suis bien plus proche qu’étranger . "
MC:
Music is also that: a troubadour trick, simplicity. Whoever you are/I am much closer to you than a stranger
PZ: If you think about it, it's the purest of all the arts, the fastest, the most direct, with dance, perhaps. We can all love the same book, but before XNUMX'XNUMX people find themselves in a room reading the book together and having the same thrill at the same time, it can be a little complicated. While the music is pure rock water.

MC: It's funny that you're talking about water because Lettre infinie Is the idea of ​​an M which is amplified, which repeats itself infinitely and spreads likea growing wave. It's a way of talking about music as a vibration. I found myself on a TV show (" On n’est pas couché ", Ed) with Toumani Diabaté , and all of a sudden he started playing the kora and it had an effect on the incredible audience! The vibration of his playing completely changed the energy on the board, which had an enormous effect on the audience. There was a kind of purity in that moment. When we bring another culture into ours, through music, it opens the consciousness, the doors, the sensibilities.

Speaking of Toumani Diabaté you have been named griot?
MC: I was named white griot. It's symbolic, but it's not trivial. There was recognition, but I do not know what. Soul perhaps? The soul in Mali? Toumani Diabaté, he is a real griot. They transmit the kora, their traditional musical instrument, from father to son for eleven generations. So since the Mandingo Empire, what would be for us the Middle Age. When he plays it, we feel that it comes from far away.

On the cover of the album « Lettre infinie There is an M. How do you bring back this character?
MC: M, it's my artist name. I have the challenge of reinventing my character with each album. M it's my poetic, whimsical part, and I'm trying to find a way to revive M ...
PZ: Anything naked?
MC: It's not stupid.

Jean-Paul Gaultier had designed the costumes of "Lamomali". Who will do them for Lettre infinie "?
MC: We are in something more Circus. The character is set up nicely ...

What part of you does M represent?
MC: M, he's a character from my inner world. He is related to my childhood. But this time he is more masculine. By the way, oddly, this album is more masculine than " Qui de nous deux ". It's my little boy's side that comes out especially in a song called " Grand petit con ". M allows me to be a child while being an adult.

A friendship like yours, which has lasted so long, necessarily translates into music.
PZ: I have a basic principle in life: the unconditionality of friendship. With Matthieu, we are bound Ad vitam æternam and it is necessarily felt through what we do. I like to live these moments when we are together, where we look for something together, where we are lost, I cherish them perhaps more than the end result. Even if what we are looking for, finally, is to live beautiful things and make the result be great ....
MC: ... like that little dinner the other night.
PZ: Thanks to our growing children, we realise that we do not see each other much anymore, while we spent our lives together when we were recording " Je dis aime". We registered in his country house. We lived there for two and a half months and all of a sudden, we did not see each other anymore. It's a chance to get together thanks to the music..
MC: It's true that it's a pretext to see each other. I watched this beautiful documentary on Quincy Jones on Netflix and he says very clearly that for him, it's the love, the energy of the people, that makes the music.

Still, recording an album as you do, old-fashioned, in a recording studio, is no longer the norm today.
PZ: Creating music without meeting each other is very new. Guys send the stuff over the internet, they do not end up in a recording studio, they do not know if the other guy smells good, if he is funny, if he is small, ... It is an absolute horror! Without wanting look too conservative, even if they win Grammy Awards, I find it poor musically. Pharrell could be a guy like that. But when we did things together, he was there. For "Go Up", in the last album of Cassius, he came 1:30 here and that was enough.
MC: There is a real presence.
PZ: Without all that, human chemistry, we can not create! We had to choose between two pieces: a slow one and a fast one. I told him, "We should take the" up-tempo "one, because you never do" up-tempo ". He said "up, up, up, go up," and he found his thing. It became "Go Up". How are you doing otherwise? I find it super sad because life is more important than anything else..
MC: TThe real question is: why do we do that? To be Number onr or to live beautiful things? If you make music, a record is first to live great moments and feed each other. If only for the final result, it does not make sense..
PZ: We operate like that, but there are lots of people who work differently, make disks without meeting each other. Which would have been impossible at the time of Michael Jackson, Quincy Jones, Billy Holliday, Eta James, where everyone created together. When Aretha Franklin died, Questlove, The Roots drummer, said, if she were 14, we would not be talking about Aretha Franklin. She is not hot, she does not have 360,000 followers on Instagram. Record companies are not waiting until four albums to see if it works: they are waiting for a piece, and if it does not sell, it's over.

Speaking of all these singers, what are your common influences?
MC: What we have in common - me thanks to my father and you thanks to your beginnings as a sound engineer - is the fact that we knew some great, like Serge Gainsbourg. The list is long ... We have in common this love of music and to have seen many musicians.
PZ: We are always very influenced by musicians who could spend their entire lives in the studio, on the road. I recently saw an article on Paul McCartney. The guy asked him, "Why do you keep doing this job when you have 900 million pounds in your bank account? And he answered: "This is the only thing I know how to do! Matthieu and I have both been very influenced by this studio culture, this magical place. This job is an incredible art and craft! A bit like a jeweller or a master watchmaker. We are passionate!

That's what you like when you work with Philippe: this know-how?
MC: Yes, and it's a skill that is lost. The way Philippe works is out of time! There are still some like him, but they can be counted on the fingers of one hand.
PZ: There will always be, just as there will always be plumassiers and all these crafts that could have disappeared. On the other hand if this studio, which is an interface, disappeared, it would be a real pain to work as I work.
MC: And I was inspired with this studio to set up an oasis in the countryside, with a permaculture garden and vegetable garden, mandala gardens and an old-fashioned studio.

You are very involved in everything related to permaculture, renewable energies.
MC: : I had the chance to meet some inspiring people: Pierre Rabhi, Marc Grollimund, a permaculture specialist, Eric Scotto, who is in renewable energy, Marc de la Ménardière, who made the film " En quête de sens ", Nicolas Hulot, whom I see from time to time ......
PZ: What's beautiful with this oasis is that you've found a way to put all your interests together: everything goes in the direction of this quest for poetry.
MC: Yesterday, when we both spoke, we realized that urban music took over all the place in the music industry. But it's a kind of music disconnected from nature, from the earth.
PZ: One day, I was talking to a shepherd living in Formentera. He had to go to Barcelona and that obliged him to put on shoes. It had been 22 years since he was wearing no shoes. Under his feet, it was like horn! He told me he did not wear shoes because the sole blocks him, prevents him from being in contact with the energy of the Earth. And all of a sudden I thought of urban music. The urban is a huge layer of tar placed on the ground, on which we put buildings and red lights. And it's still crazy that the only music that works on earth today is the "Urban"!
MC : And what is crazy is that Pierre Rabhi calls those who listen to this music "the soil-less generation". We could also call this music the " soil-less music ".

What is the first record you bought for yourself?
PZ: I was fortunate enough to have a big sister who was listening to Neil Young and suddenly it allowed me to rebel and listen to the Sex Pistols, which was very important for me, punk and hard rock, at that time.
MC: I did not listen to hard rock or punk. My first 45 record was "Video kills the radio star" from The Buggles. Besides, when I was 13-14 years old my father would say to me: "You know Matthieu, you must be angry! Please get upset, have an emotional breakdown! And the day it happened to me, he said: "thank you" (laughs).

You are both lovers of words. What book would you take with you if you were going to march? and why?
PZ: There's one book I read every year: it's "Siddhartha" by Hermann Hesse. And I would also take Mikhail Bulgakov's "The Master and Margarita" because I could read it all my life.
MC: I would take with the complete poetic works of my grandmother, Andrée Chedid. It's incredibly powerful. She wrote the lyrics of many of my songs. I will take this to remind me of where I come from ...

M X Zdar to infinity

April 30th 2019

[Click on the image to see the gallery]

In a conversation, more than an interview, singer Matthieu Chedid, aka M, and producer Philippe Zdar, tell each other about M's new album: « Lettre infinie » . A record that resonates with the private life of Matthieu , becoming a dad for the second time and their friendship that goes back to the album « Je dis aime » . Over the course of the discussion, they wonder about the creative act and the music as a universal vibration and means of survival. It was also about permaculture, the magic of an old-style recording studio. Not to mention some anecdotes featuring Stevie Wonder, Pharrell Williams or Toumani Diabaté ... precious moments, stolen while the album « Lettre infinie » was not yet finished - Isabelle Cerboneschi, Paris. pictures: Michèle Bloch-Stuckens and Buonomo & Cometti.

In the video announcing the January 25 release of "Infinite Letter", the last album of M, the alias of Matthieu Chedid, we see the singer in the recording studio Motorbass producer Philippe Zdar. This is neither the first nor the last. Their friendship is born from their shared passion for music and chiseled words. When we know each other at the end of our fingertips, it helps. There is a confidence that no longer needs to be given, a respect that does not need to say its name.

Last fall, at a friend's dinner where they were both present, I asked Matthieu Chedid if he would agree to give me an interview about his upcoming album. He agreed, but on one condition: to lead it with two voices, with Philippe Zdar. I said yes of course, without thinking. Zdar, his real name, Philippe Cerboneschi , is considered by Vanity Fair magazine as one of the most influential French XNUMX. He became a sound engineer at XNUMX, worked with Gainsbourg, Etienne Daho, Prince, Pharrell Williams, Cat Power, the Beastie Boys, Franz Ferdinand, ... The list of stars whose voice passed under his fingers is so long that I do not know it. He's half of the Motorbass group, the Funk Mob and the Cassius band, but above all, he's my brother. And how to interview without getting to private? But Matthieu Chedid had his reasons: at the heart of this friendship are the keys of these works co-created by two artists who have been working together for more than twenty years. And these keys, they had the elegance of my entrusting them.

Matthieu Chedid is the singer we love to love. It is he and his double, M, sweet and tender character, as if fallen from the moon or this beautiful country of a childhood not lost. He who is believed on his word when he says "Without a word, everything is said. Infinitely and for life". Son of the singer Louis Chedid, grandson of the poet Andrée Chedid, the artist was able to draw from these genealogical sons the best, embracing his path he draws in this silky voice that sometimes flies so high. He has created a dreamlike world where you want to curl up. His last album is about love, by the way. When we met, he was preparing to be a father for the second time. It showed in his voice. Since our meeting, Tao was born. He is the brother of Billie, the daughter of Matthieu Chedid, who sings on his latest album-declaration of love.

The interview took place in the recording studio Motorbass, a few days before finishing the album. A fabulous chance, because there were still things not quite finished, being tweaked, all happening that day.

Philippe Zdar: This piece we hear is fabulous! This is one of my favorites. It's a real single!

IC:Which one? PZ: Uh ... « Je t’aime ... » Matthieu Chedid: « Adieu mon amour ". What I love about Philippe is that he changes the titles of all songs. There is one called "Ma thérapie", he calls it "Planetaire", while the word planet is not even in the song!

PZ: That's because it reminds me of my hairdresser when I lived in Aix-les-Bains! ... Which by the way was not called 'Planet'Hair' but 'Diminu'tiff! (Laughs)

How can we predict that a song will become a single?
PZ: Because we want to listen to it many times.

What story did you want to tell in this new album?
MC: Already that's the story we live with Philippe. Since practically my debut - my first album was home made - but my second, " Je dis aime" (released in 1999, ed), was marked by the sound of Philippe since he mixed it. Every time we work together, things happen that are pretty strong.

How did you meet each-other?
MC:
We had a woman in common.

But not at the same time?
MC: Almost…
PZ: We were separating her and me. One day the phone rings, I answer, I hear a voice saying, "Hello, I'd like to talk to C." I pass the phone to C. and when she hangs up, I ask her who it was. She answers, "It's Matthieu ..." And just the way she told me, I knew he was going to be her new guy. A week later, she left ......
MC: There was a rather phenomenal contrast between the two of us, though. We are two extremely different personalities. And even more at the time.
PZ: C. did not stop telling us that we should work together and we made " Machistador " in this studio. We met here..
MC: What's funny is that this new album is going to be called " Lettre infinie ", like the letter M. And I have the feeling, for a lot of reasons, that it's a very aligned record that brings me back to the time when we made the albums " Je dis aime" or " Qui de nous deux". With Philippe, we always live great musical and artistic encounters and I already know in advance, it may be presumptuous, that this record is a great appointment in my life.

And not only in your professional life?
MC: No. "Infinite Letter" resonates with the infinite Being. But I'm going to be a daddy for the second time: a little boy will arrive exactly at the same time as the release of this record, which will also be a story of transmission, like « Qui de nous deux », which was for my girl.
PZ: While you're talking, I'm realising that between the creation of all your albums, you were the guitarist of all Cassius albums, the band I created with Hubert Blanc-Francard. Each time we called you to come and make a guitar you said "yes".

There is a synchronicity that I find surprising between you two: the previous album of Matthew, "Lamomali", was an ode to a happy utopian country. Cassius' latest album, "Ibifornia", also told a happy utopia. They came out at the same time. What were these worlds you were calling for?
MC:
: I think we are both lovers of absolute beauty and by music, we invent dream worlds.
PZ: We dream of an ideal world where absolute art reigns, music as it was done in the 1970's and we try to make it last and to be together. Today, there are many people who make music without ever seeing each other, never meeting, never having lunch or dinner together. And the album comes out of the very marketed computer. We are in love with the very strong feelings we can find in recording studios, which are pretty magical places. But I do not know if "Ibifornia" was the ideal world that I placed my hopes in ...
MC: It was still a fusion between Ibiza and California and "Lamomali" it was a mix between Paris and Bamako. There is a lot of unconsciousness in all this.

Was this idea of ​​mixing two worlds wanted from the start?
PZ:
We find an idea and we justify it by doing it. The message about miscegenation was much clearer in the album "Lamomali" because there was a real mix of cultures and musicians. But it's true that we both dream of an ideal world. Maybe we are looking for a child's world?
MC: There is something of the order of sacralisation in the ideal word: it is the idea above the idea. It's a necessity for us to make music. And when it becomes a necessity, it has a certain nobility. We do not make the right music ... I was going to say, to flirt with girls. Nothing is harmless, everything has a function.
PZ: It's a way of surviving in this world that does not fit me. It's been twenty years since I have a TV. It was initially a political and citizen approach. But I realize that we are in 2018, that everyone has a TV on thier phone, and that all the efforts I made are crushed. Making music is a way to make a living of course, but above all, it is to breathe. And with Matthew, we have that in common. You remember being called the Guitar man in the beginning?
MC: I had forgotten.

Why this nickname of the Guitar Man?
PZ: Because he played all the time, everywhere! It reminds me of an anecdote that had happened at Marcadet studio. Stevie Wonder had recorded "I just called to say I love you", with Jean-Philippe Bonichon, the sound engineer who gave me my first chance. They left the studio at six in the morning and they waited for a taxi. But at the exit of Marcadet, there was a small red door with a very small studio all rotten which played a lot of zou. Two guys were smoking outside. They recognised Stevie wonder. They ask him if he could play something on their song. Stevie Wonder answers of course! He made the taxi wait, he went in and he starts to play the harmonica ... Matthew, that was him! We were walking down the street, guys were stopping to ask him to play guitar on their song, he said "yes of course" and he was going back to the studio. That's why we called him the Guitar Man. He was playing guitars all the time, without being paid. And C. his partner, was Madame Sofa . She fell asleep while playing and woke up when it was over.

It reminds me of the phrase in your grandmother's poem that you put on your last Lamomali album: " Toi/ Qui que tu sois!/Je te suis bien plus proche qu’étranger . "
MC:
Music is also that: a troubadour trick, simplicity. Whoever you are/I am much closer to you than a stranger
PZ: If you think about it, it's the purest of all the arts, the fastest, the most direct, with dance, perhaps. We can all love the same book, but before XNUMX'XNUMX people find themselves in a room reading the book together and having the same thrill at the same time, it can be a little complicated. While the music is pure rock water.

MC: It's funny that you're talking about water because Lettre infinie Is the idea of ​​an M which is amplified, which repeats itself infinitely and spreads likea growing wave. It's a way of talking about music as a vibration. I found myself on a TV show (" On n’est pas couché ", Ed) with Toumani Diabaté , and all of a sudden he started playing the kora and it had an effect on the incredible audience! The vibration of his playing completely changed the energy on the board, which had an enormous effect on the audience. There was a kind of purity in that moment. When we bring another culture into ours, through music, it opens the consciousness, the doors, the sensibilities.

Speaking of Toumani Diabaté you have been named griot?
MC: I was named white griot. It's symbolic, but it's not trivial. There was recognition, but I do not know what. Soul perhaps? The soul in Mali? Toumani Diabaté, he is a real griot. They transmit the kora, their traditional musical instrument, from father to son for eleven generations. So since the Mandingo Empire, what would be for us the Middle Age. When he plays it, we feel that it comes from far away.

On the cover of the album « Lettre infinie There is an M. How do you bring back this character?
MC: M, it's my artist name. I have the challenge of reinventing my character with each album. M it's my poetic, whimsical part, and I'm trying to find a way to revive M ...
PZ: Anything naked?
MC: It's not stupid.

Jean-Paul Gaultier had designed the costumes of "Lamomali". Who will do them for Lettre infinie "?
MC: We are in something more Circus. The character is set up nicely ...

What part of you does M represent?
MC: M, he's a character from my inner world. He is related to my childhood. But this time he is more masculine. By the way, oddly, this album is more masculine than " Qui de nous deux ". It's my little boy's side that comes out especially in a song called " Grand petit con ". M allows me to be a child while being an adult.

A friendship like yours, which has lasted so long, necessarily translates into music.
PZ: I have a basic principle in life: the unconditionality of friendship. With Matthieu, we are bound Ad vitam æternam and it is necessarily felt through what we do. I like to live these moments when we are together, where we look for something together, where we are lost, I cherish them perhaps more than the end result. Even if what we are looking for, finally, is to live beautiful things and make the result be great ....
MC: ... like that little dinner the other night.
PZ: Thanks to our growing children, we realise that we do not see each other much anymore, while we spent our lives together when we were recording " Je dis aime". We registered in his country house. We lived there for two and a half months and all of a sudden, we did not see each other anymore. It's a chance to get together thanks to the music..
MC: It's true that it's a pretext to see each other. I watched this beautiful documentary on Quincy Jones on Netflix and he says very clearly that for him, it's the love, the energy of the people, that makes the music.

Still, recording an album as you do, old-fashioned, in a recording studio, is no longer the norm today.
PZ: Creating music without meeting each other is very new. Guys send the stuff over the internet, they do not end up in a recording studio, they do not know if the other guy smells good, if he is funny, if he is small, ... It is an absolute horror! Without wanting look too conservative, even if they win Grammy Awards, I find it poor musically. Pharrell could be a guy like that. But when we did things together, he was there. For "Go Up", in the last album of Cassius, he came 1:30 here and that was enough.
MC: There is a real presence.
PZ: Without all that, human chemistry, we can not create! We had to choose between two pieces: a slow one and a fast one. I told him, "We should take the" up-tempo "one, because you never do" up-tempo ". He said "up, up, up, go up," and he found his thing. It became "Go Up". How are you doing otherwise? I find it super sad because life is more important than anything else..
MC: TThe real question is: why do we do that? To be Number onr or to live beautiful things? If you make music, a record is first to live great moments and feed each other. If only for the final result, it does not make sense..
PZ: We operate like that, but there are lots of people who work differently, make disks without meeting each other. Which would have been impossible at the time of Michael Jackson, Quincy Jones, Billy Holliday, Eta James, where everyone created together. When Aretha Franklin died, Questlove, The Roots drummer, said, if she were 14, we would not be talking about Aretha Franklin. She is not hot, she does not have 360,000 followers on Instagram. Record companies are not waiting until four albums to see if it works: they are waiting for a piece, and if it does not sell, it's over.

Speaking of all these singers, what are your common influences?
MC: What we have in common - me thanks to my father and you thanks to your beginnings as a sound engineer - is the fact that we knew some great, like Serge Gainsbourg. The list is long ... We have in common this love of music and to have seen many musicians.
PZ: We are always very influenced by musicians who could spend their entire lives in the studio, on the road. I recently saw an article on Paul McCartney. The guy asked him, "Why do you keep doing this job when you have 900 million pounds in your bank account? And he answered: "This is the only thing I know how to do! Matthieu and I have both been very influenced by this studio culture, this magical place. This job is an incredible art and craft! A bit like a jeweller or a master watchmaker. We are passionate!

That's what you like when you work with Philippe: this know-how?
MC: Yes, and it's a skill that is lost. The way Philippe works is out of time! There are still some like him, but they can be counted on the fingers of one hand.
PZ: There will always be, just as there will always be plumassiers and all these crafts that could have disappeared. On the other hand if this studio, which is an interface, disappeared, it would be a real pain to work as I work.
MC: And I was inspired with this studio to set up an oasis in the countryside, with a permaculture garden and vegetable garden, mandala gardens and an old-fashioned studio.

You are very involved in everything related to permaculture, renewable energies.
MC: : I had the chance to meet some inspiring people: Pierre Rabhi, Marc Grollimund, a permaculture specialist, Eric Scotto, who is in renewable energy, Marc de la Ménardière, who made the film " En quête de sens ", Nicolas Hulot, whom I see from time to time ......
PZ: What's beautiful with this oasis is that you've found a way to put all your interests together: everything goes in the direction of this quest for poetry.
MC: Yesterday, when we both spoke, we realized that urban music took over all the place in the music industry. But it's a kind of music disconnected from nature, from the earth.
PZ: One day, I was talking to a shepherd living in Formentera. He had to go to Barcelona and that obliged him to put on shoes. It had been 22 years since he was wearing no shoes. Under his feet, it was like horn! He told me he did not wear shoes because the sole blocks him, prevents him from being in contact with the energy of the Earth. And all of a sudden I thought of urban music. The urban is a huge layer of tar placed on the ground, on which we put buildings and red lights. And it's still crazy that the only music that works on earth today is the "Urban"!
MC : And what is crazy is that Pierre Rabhi calls those who listen to this music "the soil-less generation". We could also call this music the " soil-less music ".

What is the first record you bought for yourself?
PZ: I was fortunate enough to have a big sister who was listening to Neil Young and suddenly it allowed me to rebel and listen to the Sex Pistols, which was very important for me, punk and hard rock, at that time.
MC: I did not listen to hard rock or punk. My first 45 record was "Video kills the radio star" from The Buggles. Besides, when I was 13-14 years old my father would say to me: "You know Matthieu, you must be angry! Please get upset, have an emotional breakdown! And the day it happened to me, he said: "thank you" (laughs).

You are both lovers of words. What book would you take with you if you were going to march? and why?
PZ: There's one book I read every year: it's "Siddhartha" by Hermann Hesse. And I would also take Mikhail Bulgakov's "The Master and Margarita" because I could read it all my life.
MC: I would take with the complete poetic works of my grandmother, Andrée Chedid. It's incredibly powerful. She wrote the lyrics of many of my songs. I will take this to remind me of where I come from ...