If you like three-line artist bios, we've got bad news: you've already read two of them, the only purpose of which is to explain to you that, in this case, you'll need a lot more than three.
The good news is that we're going to tell you about The Everminds and we're going to take our time by allowing ourselves the luxury of digression, with parallels that make sense and illuminate the journey. We'll talk about this pop-rock band with a broad and playful aesthetic, but also, through the game of affinities and analogies, about their sources of inspiration, their models, their roots.
Eric Elbaz, Laurent Cadenne and Sébastien Ramseyer are all French, their civil status attests it, and it is in the Yvelines, west of Paris, that they installed their reference point: their recording studio, so crucial in their creative process. But obviously, their musical identity wanders much
more to the West. It's an Anglo-Saxon music by heart and blood, but also by the experience of Eric, the singer/guitarist/composer, whose life was partly spent in England and the US, and of Sebastien, the drummer who studied and lived in New Mexico. It is not surprising, then, to hear
something very "anchored", carnal and authentic, in their writing and Eric’s singing intonations, but also in the answers (by the three musicians) that will follow in the following pages. Ready? Let’s go.
1 - IF THE EVERMINDS WERE A GEOMETRICAL FIGURE?
Unanimous answer: a triangle. Three sides, three points (or "vertices"), and in the center, a contained undeformable space, which, in their musical universe is that of the agreement, the happy conciliation.
The history of rock music has offered us some beautiful adventures in threesomes, from The Police to Supergrass, from The Jam to The Jon Spencer Blues Explosion. Is life in a trio easier, more harmonious, than in groups of 4, 5 or 6? Hard to say. But concerning these three, the
question doesn't even arise anymore because they are longtime friends, as well as the brains of a musical project in which the implication of each one is essential at each moment of the process. In other words, they wouldn't know how to do otherwise.
A singer-guitarist (Eric). A drummer (Sébastien). A keyboardist and sound engineer (Laurent): These three musicians become one when each finds his place behind the SSL console set in their own recording studio since 2015 (read below).
2 - IF THE EVERMINDS WERE A CITY?
Even if their first homemade studio album sounds like the ideal soundtrack for a California road trip - from the cliffs of Big Sur to the Hollywood Hills- it's in Paris that the adventure began!
And it is always to Paris that Eric, Sébastien and Laurent return, never tired of the lights, the architecture, the history and the promises of the city of Brassai, Zola and Sarah Bernhardt.
Today, the three musicians fully claim this identity, this cultural and aesthetic anchorage. However, since most of the music they grew up with was Anglo-Saxon, they turned to Rock when they started playing as a trio.
3 - IF THE EVERMINDS WERE A PHOTOGRAPHER?
Here again, the answer is spontaneous: it would be Ansel Adams, for his love and depiction of the Great Outdoors. It is not rare, within the trio, that a discussion about the sound to give to a new song ventures on the side of Art or Architecture. Because in music too, it is often a question of space, depth of field, colors and contrasts. Eric, Sébastien and Laurent are photographers of their own performances on their respective instrument: in the studio, it is up to them to trigger the shutter at the right moment. Later, they will send the results of their studio work to American mixer Michael Brauer (world-renowned for his work with the Rolling Stones, Coldplay, John Mayer and many others, and a seven-time Grammy award winner). From New York City, Brauer puts the finishing touch on the work of the three Frenchmen. "When we get the songs mixed by Michael," says Eric, "we're always amazed at his scientific knowledge of sound and the bias he brings to the mix, the way he makes this or that element shine. He's really a great mixer of sounds and music".
4 - IF THE EVERMINDS WERE A SONG ?
For Eric : Wildflowers by Tom Petty.
For Sébastien : Hurt, interpreted by Johnny Cash.
For Laurent : In Your Eyes by Peter Gabriel.
5 - WHAT IF THE EVERMINDS WERE A YEAR IN THE HISTORY OF MUSIC?
Unlike the trio's answers to the previous "analogies", this question required a lot of thought but their answer, as always with The Everminds, comes with a very Cartesian explanation. The year would be 1986. Why 1986? "Because it's a time in British and American pop-rock history when the kind of music we like most was produced in studios often equipped with SSL consoles," answers Eric.
Designed near Oxford, England since the 1970s, SSLs (for Solid State Logic) are synonymous with both clarity and power, and iconic producers such as Steve Lillywhite, Trevor Horn and Bob Clearmountain have made them their primary tool of choice. Lovers of their sound, Eric, Sébastien and Laurent were lucky enough to acquire one of these “Formula One” board in 2015. It gives its sound and soul to their recording studio - almost like a fourth musician. Another reason to choose 1986 is that it’s the year Peter Gabriel's “So” was released.
An album unanimously revered by the band.
6 - IF THE EVERMINDS WERE A MOVIE?
"Can we have several choices?", ask the trio, whom we bully a little with our inquisitive questions.
Eric mentions “The Big Lebowski”, by the Coen brothers but specifies however: “there are so many other possible choices, it is a very difficult question...". Sébastien mentions Charles Laughton's “The Night of the Hunter”, and Laurent “Crooks in Clover”. "What if we also mentioned a musical film?" adds the trio, still under the spell of Peter Jackson's recent and brilliant “The Beatles: Get Back”. Why not indeed?
7 - IF THE EVERMINDS WERE AN INVENTOR?
Ole Kirk Christiansen, the inventor of LEGO (which takes its name from the contraction of two Danish words "Leg” and “Godt" - meaning "play well").
8 - WHAT IF THE EVERMINDS WERE AN ARITHMETIC CONCEPT?
The highest common denominator! That is to say, a form of sharing philosophy that fits perfectly with the triangle format.
From Fleetwood Mac to Oasis, the history of Rock has been full of rivalries, exhausting and harmful ego battles between musicians of the same band: "My song is better than yours! I am right and you are wrong!" Except that narrow-mindedness and the absence of listening to the
other never leads very far... On the other hand, Eric, Sébastien and Laurent all know what they owe to the history (and richness) of popular music, they never hesitate to dive back into a Supertramp record, or into a burning hot Nile Rodgers’ production (a major reference for Eric,
even if the music of The Everminds doesn't necessarily show it) In other words, the three co-producers and musicians are very attentive to the question of the "connection" that can be established, through each song, with the listener. It is a music that reaches out, a music that seeks to gather around a melody, create an emotion - as shown by the beautiful “Song for Everyone”. This music is built on the exchange of shared references with the great records of David Bowie, Radiohead, Tom Petty and Peter Gabriel.
9 - IF THE EVERMINDS WERE A HUMAN FEELING?
(And there's really nothing more to Add.)
Emmanuel Tellier, for The Everminds, February 2023