Carivari are an Industrial/Grindcore band from Nice, France. Now signed to No Good To Anyone Productions (run by Fabien of the excellent Wheelfall), their forthcoming debut album “Reset” has been kicking holes in my head since I got a pre-release copy last month (you can read our review here). Manu from the band kindly took the time to answer some questions, so here we go…
Thanks for agreeing to this interview with Blessed Altar Zine. First of all, who is Carivari and what does each member contribute to the band?
Manu: Carivari is Antoine (drums and vocals), Hugo (synth/live sampling), David (bass) and Manu (guitar and vocals).
How did the band first come together? Were you all involved in other musical projects before you formed the band?
Manu: Before Carivari, Manu and Antoine played in a stoner band, soon joined by David on guitar (who has also played in a stoner band called Water Pipe Cult). Antoine and Manu first started as a joke a side project to play industrial metal. David joined them on bass, and Hugo, who was already making electronic music in his solo project Quid. The project got serious and became Carivari at the end of 2019.
Listening to your new album Reset, I hear a lot of grindcore riffing, but the glitchy, electronic/ industrial side is strong too. When you’re creating music do you approach it from either side, or do you find these two aspects go together from the beginning?
Manu: The music is half industrial/electronic, half metal/hardcore/grindcore. Hugo created lots of sound on his synthesizer, and Manu collected spoken samples and other sounds, and at the same time, the band wrote riffs to create songs. It depends on the songs, but most of the time, the riffs were written before the electronic sounds were added. And when all the songs were recorded, the band did a lot of editing with David while he was mixing the album.There is also an instrumental/electronic song, « Danse Macabre », that was composed after the drums were recorded. Antoine and Manu took bits of drums parts and guitar’s feedback that were improvised during the recording and pieced them together and added a lot of samples and electronic sounds.
I have to admit that aside from ‘Democratic Rape’ where I think I head “this is not a test”, I couldn’t make out any of the lyrics on the album, but your track titles are very intriguing. What ideas are you exploring in your songs?
Manu: Well, English is obviously not our native language and we have to improve our accent !
The lyrics from « Democratic Rape » are about the violent repression by police forces led by Macron and his government on the Yellow Vest protesters in France. At the beginning of the song, there’s a sample from a policeman who says to someone in the street : « if you want to stay alive, go home » (si vous voulez rester en vie, rentre chez vous). The words democratic rape (« viol démocratique ») are borrowed from Juan Branco’s book Crépuscule.
The other songs include subjects such as capitalist exploitation, alienation due to technology and consumerism, ecological disaster, dance… Many lyrics were inspired by writers, journalists and philosophers : Jean-Marc Ligny’s novel Exodes, Naomi Klein, Burroughs, Slavoj Zizek…
Is there a political message to the album? I think I heard some Georg W. Bush samples in there(?), which reminded me of those early 2000s Ministry records where they really went after him on a lot of their tracks.
Manu: The 90’s and 2000’s Ministry is a great influence for sampling, alongside Skinny Puppy and Revolting Cocks. There’s no W. Bush samples in the songs, because he’s from the past now. There are samples from Trump and Macron because it is quite ironic to hear Trump talking about global warming and Macron about democracy. So yes there is a political message. There are also samples from TV reports, documentaries, Youtube videos, movies, songs…
The album artwork is also very striking. What’s the meaning behind that?
Manu: All visual artwork is made by Carivari and a friend, Loïc. The collage and montage are a logical extension of the sampling in the music. And as for musical sampling, collage implies heterogeneous elements from different sources.
The title comes from the song « Reset », the last song of the album. The song is about extinction. This song was written, as most of the songs, before the pandemic. But now, the World Economic Forum is starting the « Great Reset ». So this is a « good » coincidence.
How did you come to work with Fabien at No Good To Anyone? Had Wheelfall been an influence at all? I’m reminded a bit of their ‘Atrocity Reports’ record on your track ‘The Dancing Plague’ from the new album.
Manu: I discovered Wheelfall some years ago after the release of Atrocity Reports. I immediately liked it : the vocals, the atmosphere, the riffs, and of course the industrial influences. I read interviews and so I knew that Fabien was really into Industrial Music. First I contacted him last year in case they wanted to play in our area. But the pandemic happened and nobody was touring anymore, all the venues were closed. Then Wheelfall released A Spectre is Haunting the World, I also loved it. This album was released via Fabien’s label No Good To Anyone. So when Carivari finished the album, I asked him if he was seeking for bands to release on his label and sent him the songs. He liked the music, and voilà !
In a way Wheelfall had been an influence, because I like that, as a modern band, they mix their music with industrial influences. I like the mixing of different genres, like grindcore and noise in Full Of Hell, or industrial and grindcore in Harm’s Way and Code Orange.
How has it been as a band to be making your first record in the midst of this pandemic? Are you hoping to be able to perform these songs live some time soon?
Manu: In France, the first lockdown happened between March and May 2020, so during this time the band was unable to rehearse, but we kept writing music on computer. Then when (almost) all the songs were finished, we could record during summer. We also spent a long time for mixing and editing, and we played only one show in autumn. Now, live music is slowly becoming possible again, so yes, we hope to play soon, but we don’t know precisely when.
Have there been any notable movies or books that have inspired you during this time where we’ve often been trapped at home?
Manu: Les Saisons by Maurice Pons ; Fast and Furious.
Finally, is there anything else you’d like to promote or mention for our readers?
Manu: As we said earlier, last autumn for our only show we played with the noise rock band Toru, who released a great album, check them out here.
Also, if you like stoner and sludge, the band Wormsand just release their album last month on Poutrasseau Records, a local label that has just been created (link here).
Thank you a lot for the interview !!
Thanks to Manu for taking the time to answer my questions and thanks to Fabien from No Good To Anyone Productions for setting up the interview. “Reset” will be released on June 4th and is available to pre-order now on digital and limited edition vinyl. Order a copy from the links below and follow the band on social media to stay up to date with news and releases.
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