Described as "confident and boyishly handsome" indie-pop trio Keep Dancing Inc are a boy band with a difference, creating music to bring "fun to everyone", they are a group who wear their heart on their sleeve.
Made up of Charles, Joseph and Louis the young Parisians are back with their latest EP Initial Public Offering, speaking on their newest record, the boys let us know about their first impressions of each other, meeting French artist Flavien Berger and their upcoming album in 2018.
Describe your current state of mind in 5 words or less?
Tough work and big expectations.
Let's take it back to the beginning what was it like growing up in Paris for each of you?
Charles: I grew up in a nice but boring suburb in south-west Paris, and my only wish was to get out of there. I actually still live there, so my wish hasn’t really changed.
Joseph: My background’s pretty similar, but I got to live for a year in Singapore when I was 13 and it was one of the best experiences of my life.
Louis: I actually grew up in West Paris in a kinda posh and quiet area. I was really lucky because I've always been able to be independent and go to gigs and stuff from a young age.
So what inspired you all to get into music?
Charles: I started playing the guitar when I was 8, and wrote my first few songs over the next couple of years. At high school, a lot of my identity was
based around music and I moved between a lot of bands. In fact, the first time I performed in the UK was with one of them supporting Blossoms in
Joseph: For me, it began listening to a friend of my brother playing piano at my house. I loved it so much I told my mom I wanted to play it too so she sent me to the conservatory. I remember being 13 and buying a magazine looking at the New York music scene, and it was there I discovered The Velvet
Underground, Talking Heads. From then on I knew that I wanted to get serious about music.
Louis: Beating Guitar Hero III aged 12 was a revelation.
You all initially met at music concerts, what were your first impressions of each other?
Louis: I met Charles at a Palma Violets concert through a friend in common, and it was just amazing to meet someone who had the same music taste. At
that time I was planning to form my own band, and Charles seemed like a perfect fit. The first time I really met Joseph, we talked for hours and hours
about gear and music we loved. We all just had that same experience of getting along straight away.
Joseph: I also stalked these guys on Facebook before actually meeting them, but who doesn't these days?
Charles: I was just about to say that Joseph was really classy. Louis was more king of the mosh pit.
When did the idea for Keep Dancing Inc come about?
Louis: While it was still just Charles and me, we met Flavien Berger, this famous French singer, who asked us to play a gig a month later. We had to programme the entire gig ourselves with just synths and drum machines and really started to find our sound.
The ultimate goal for Keep Dancing Inc is to "provide fun for everyone" - why is this so important for the band?
Charles: I think it’s kind of summed up by our name - Keep Dancing Inc’s been there from the beginning. It was inspired by 80-90’s corporate imagery but co-opted. We just want to help you keep your head up during bad times, and keep you on your feet.
Louis, you've said that singing in English is easier as it allows the group "to hide ourselves" - could you explain this further?
It’s kind of hard to explain. I guess the English language sounds smoother to us. We’ve all grown up bathed in English culture, and are pretty much fluent
anyway, but I think it just gives us a bit of distance from the music – we can focus on the sound.
Now let's get to the fun part, tell us about your latest EP Initial Public Offering?
We’re really proud of the EP. We recorded the five songs between December and March in between uni and exams, which was something of a challenge I have to admit. Then we mixed it in New York with Daniel Lynas for a week and just got tremendous results: I don't know how people could not dance to it.
What is the message you would like to get across in this EP or your music in general?
The main idea of our music is to keep dancing no matter how bad the situation looks or feels. We wrote the lyrics of ‘How Should We Feel’ shortly after the Paris attacks, trying to convey the idea of struggling to stay positive. ‘Life Goes On’ expresses pretty much the same feeling, but through a more intimate lens.
You also worked with Daniel Lynas, whose known to have worked with Kanye West, Devonte Hynes & A$AP Rocky, how did he influence you
Lynas really took our music to a whole different level. Our homemade productions became really bigger, clearer and punchier. We wanted to work with someone who had a different background (he is mainly a hip-hop producer) to show us different perspectives to our own work.
So which French artists should we be keeping our eye on?
Superlife + Cyclisme: two friends crossing black marbles synth wave, Kirin J Callinan extravagance and sleaford mods punk radicalism. Marek Zerba, the funniest and wittiest French singer around. They’re like the Arctic Monkeys or Tame Impala but with incredible (admittedly French) puns.
What ideas changed your life?
Charles: The idea that there’s no bad music, just music I don’t understand yet.
Louis: Great songs and albums can come out of the tiniest home-studio with the humblest recording gear.
What is the first law you would change if you were prime minister?
Charles: Brexit sucks.
Louis: Synths in primary school.
Charles: That seems to cover it.
What's next for Keep Dancing Inc?
We’ve started recording our first album, which will be released next year. We have a lot of demos and are trying to develop them as much as possible to
select the best ones. In the meantime we’re coming to the UK in December, stay tuned!
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