2015 Through My Eyes: Frédéric D. Oberland [Oiseaux-Tempête]

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Frédéric is responsible for… I think my favourite album of the last year. But apart from Oiseaux-Tempête’s “Ütopiya?” he was also involved in producing Foudre! debut, Le Reveil Des Tropiques activity and composing the album released a few weeks ago under his own name. An intense year, very creative. Let’s see how Frédéric himself sees it.

Tell us your way for a successful or happy life. Do you think that man is able to live free from religion? What do you think is the meaning of our existence?

I guess there is no specific rule or way to be happy, even within the bestselling Happiness For Dummies 2.0 . The only thing to follow is your personal desire and, over anything else, your heart. Everyday I’m just trying to enjoy new things, to live with empathy towards my surroundings, to take care and, simply, be there, for my friends and to plan new possible situations to keep the fun going. Sometimes this can be a struggle, constantly opening something inside you. In a way, yeah, I’m a believer, but not in any kind of religion. I have this need for some sort of transcendental feeling, trance experiences, catharsis, all of which I’m trying to find and put into the music. But I don’t need this feeling of community, of belonging to any kind of organised religion or dogmatism. Religious texts are incredible myths and metaphors written by humans and full of symbolism and paradoxes, yet despite these inner transcendental and philosophical aspects, it’s impossible to ignore how religion can so easily be involved in creating wars and segregation, even in such a rotten neoliberal world. Walking hand in hand. Freedom. This is the quest, and definitely the word to hold on to.

How would you sum up your musical activity in 2015?

Busy and intense. With OISEAUX-TEMPÊTE we released this year ÜTOPIYA? (2xLP & CD, Sub Rosa – http://www.subrosa.net/en/catalogue/soundworks/oiseaux-tempete–utopia.html) and toured in France, Switzerland, Belgium and The Netherlands along with our friends G.W.SOK (The Ex) and Gareth Davis. After a short hiatus, there was a great time on the road too with my fellows from LE REVEIL DES TROPIQUES (new live 7″ just released few weeks ago by Music Fear Satan – http://www.musicfearsatan.com/fr/reference/le_reveil_des_tropiques-hallucinations_sceniques_vol__3-vinyl_7____transparent_orange_.html). I started a new band called FOUDRE! with the team from Saåad and Mondkopf (a first tape ‘MAGNUM CHAOS’ sold-out on BLWBCK – http://www.blwbck.com/catalog/2015/05/foudre-magnum-chaos/, more to come soon). And, well, a few collaborations (a performance duet with the french writer Hugues Jallon, some featuring to the new albums of AUN, Valparaiso…) I also released a first solo album called ‘PEREGRINUS UBIQUE’ including a photozine with some of my analog B&W photographs (Photozine + CD, Gazzar®a / VoxxoV – https://voxxov-records.bandcamp.com/album/peregrinus-ubique). That was an exciting artistic year!

How are you going to spend the upcoming holiday season?

Just a few days in the South of France to feel the sea, perhaps a few more days in Italy, then back home to prepare for new adventures in 2016. Holidays will be later!

Is there any film / book / theatrical play / exhibition / computer game which made a particular impression on you in 2015?

Films: ‘Hard To Be A God’ by Aleksei German, ‘Son Of Saul’ by László Nemes, the reissue of ‘Sorcerer’ by William Friedkin and ‘We Have An Anchor’ by Jem Cohen.

Books: ‘Chronicle’ by Sergiy Lebedynskyy and Vladyslav Krasnoshchok, “Chants de la Nuit Extrême” by Al Maari, “A Nos Amis” by Comité Invisible, ‘Walking’ by Yusuf Sevinçli, “La Conquête des Coeurs et des Esprits” by Hugues Jallon and “Achille” by Marie Richeux.

Dance play: ‘Plexus’ by Adrien Bory & Kaori Ito.

Theatrical play: “Et Balancez Mes Cendres sur Mickey” by Rodrigo Garcia at Théâtre Garonne and “Aujourd’hui C’était Mon Anniversaire – Hommage à Tadeusz Kantor” by Racha Baroud at église Saint-Merry.

Exhibitions: ‘Dessiner L’Invisible’ at Galerie 24B, ‘My Buenos Aires’ at La Maison Rouge, ‘Inversion’ by Daisuke Yokota at Galerie Jean-Kenta Gauthier, Joel-Peter Witkin & Paolo Gioli at Galerie Baudoin-Lebon, ‘Chimigrammes’ by Fanny Béguély at Galerie des Bains Douches and ‘Despite Me & You’ by Pamela Maddaleno at Jitterbug Gallery.

Shows: Om (live at Le Divan du Monde), France (live at Les Instants Chavirés), Insiden & Extreme Precautions (live at La Gaité Lyrique), Stephen O’Malley & ONCEIM (‘Gruidés’ live at église Saint-Merry), Gros Oiseau (live at L’Usine), Low (live at le Divan du Monde) and Filiamotsa & G.W.Sok (live at I:Boat).

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Did this year change you in any way, changed your perception of the world, perhaps opened your eyes on something?

Well, a few awful things took place here recently as a resonance and response of what has happened and what is continuing to happen in other parts of the world. The assassination of Charlie Hebdo’s journalists, the Paris bombings and gun attacks, and now the constant increase of a state of surveillance and fear of the unknown. I could also say that we have, right now in Europe, the worst political parties that we could ever imagine in a, well, a very real nightmare. Surrounded by a dying faux- business-state managing its last interests against everything , both people and nature, threatened by the marketing of ignorance and with the constant growth of racism and religion for dummies. Nice, isn’t it? But I still believe in local resistance and initiatives. People are the key.

Any moment of 2015 you’ll remember on your death bed?

Last Summer as I was travelling in Cappadocia, Turkey. As the sun was dying, a shepherd herds his flock in a cloud of thick brown dust that, for a few minutes, covers the road, the surroundings, our entire field of vision. That was pure magic. I guess I will remember as well the first show of FOUDRE! at église Saint-Merry in Paris in front of the stunning ‘EARTH’ film by Singaporian video-artist Ho Tzu Nyen, bliss and friendship. Or the one of OISEAUX-TEMPÊTE with Gazzar®a at Balades Sonores, just few hours before we heard of the tragic events unfolding that night in Paris and of our friends in very real potential trouble.

Your predictions for the world (in the political and cultural context) for 2016?

Chaos? Better ask a Fortune Teller!

Your personal plans, hopes, expectations for 2016?

We’re preparing with OISEAUX-TEMPÊTE some new mediterranean trips which will bring us to Lebanon in early 2016. We will play a few shows there and jam with musicians from the scene of Beyrouth, collecting ideas, field recordings and images for a new album. Before this one, a B-Side opus should be available next April on Sub Rosa as limited LP+DL ; it’s called UNWORKS&RARITIES and includes some unreleased tracks of the band featuring Gareth Davis, Christine Ott & G.W.Sok. Some new albums of FOUDRE! will also be out: ‘AMOR MUNDI’ a live tape recorded few weeks ago at Balades Sonores, the soundtrack of ‘EARTH’ as the first LP of the band including Paul Régimbeau (Mondkopf, Extreme Precautions) and Christine Ott on Ondes Martenot. A new recording session with LE REVEIL DES TROPIQUES is on the way too and surely touring in France and in Europe with all of these bands. I hope to be able to organize other exhibitions of my analog photographic work, that’s something I really got immersed in last year and that I would like to make it continue and grow. And more generally, I wish for 2016 to bring us new hope and friendship ; let’s try to understand and to help each other, that alone is at good start.

Oiseaux-Tempete website

photos by Fanny Beguely

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