- SAPPORO STAGE
The vocals ring out like a mantra, penetrating and almost mystical. It's the signature sound of The Blaze, a sound which enabled the French duo to cross continents. With their second album 'Jungle,' they return loaded with new experiences from countries travelled while on tour, taking their visuals and music even further. For The Blaze, these two notions are inextricable, interdependent: The Blaze make resolutely electronic music, inseparable from the visuals, videos that they make entirely themselves often set in urban jungles, which are inexhaustible sources of life and inspiration.
Formed in 2016 by Guillaume and Jonathan Alric, both from the worlds of cinema and photography, The Blaze immediately made their mark when the video for 'Virile' was released, followed by 'Territory,' from the EP of the same name. It was a multiaward-winning visual impact that's totalled nearly 100 million views. These two videos attracted the public and critics' curiosity alike, in particular thanks to their scenes of communion. The deep vocals, which sound like they come from the depths of the soul, adorned refined, synthetic and linear productions, always in the interest of unity. Next came videos for 'Queens' followed by 'Heaven,' both heralding the arrival of their debut album 'Dancehall,' which cemented their long-term status on the international music scene.
On 'Jungle,' the two producers, who are also cousins, have decided to be more versatile without abandoning their convictions. The first single 'Dreamer' is faithful to their aesthetic. It echoes a reconnection to their roots, as shown in the video for 'Territory' (the one that made their name), with this same old desire to portray the lives of those on the margins. In the role of the protagonist is Birane Ba, pensionnaire of the Comédie Française, who delivers a performance imbued with determination and release. " We look for a human aspect in places where we imagine it to be less happy, and we draw poetry and contrasts from it," explain Guillaume and Jonathan.
This new album is based on a pattern of an off beat, produced on synthesizers that act like a welcome electronic refrain, a base around which The Blaze weave and invent their musical canvas. This is characteristic of the other single 'Clash,' a slow pop progression full of optimism. The Blaze unveil their desire to vary vocal textures, favouring harmonies, unisons and solo incantational chants. This new paradigm also drives 'Lonely,' where particular attention is given to the meticulous melody and the touching chord progressions. Sometimes, their natural sound comes galloping back to be multiplied tenfold, with vocals in unison kneaded in, just like in 'Madly.' Here it's all in the build-up, where you can hear the influence of previous tours and which is made for tours to come. "For this album, we really imagined what our music would sound like live," vz "Traveling, really feeling the public and observing their reactions, pushed us towards this aesthetic." Their enigmatic speech is tinged with clarity, becoming lucid before finding darkness and mystery on the tracks 'Siren' and 'Haze.'
With 'Jungle,' The Blaze continue their exploration of movement. On the album cover, the city seems to form a giant wave, being everywhere at once. Yet in the midst of this effervescence there hides the intimate stories that inspire the two musicians so much. Pablo López Luz, the photographer who took the shot, captured the essence and madness of Mexico City, a colossal city and archetype of stopover places that you leave, find, or get lost in. All this can be found in The Blaze and in their new album, everything that allows the duo to embody their era and add their unique touch.