Musical ambrosia, one of my top 5 bands of all time. Totally incomparable, heavenly beyond compare, and as tactful and tasteful as wine from a medieval vineyard. I could go on forever describing the majesty of this group, but we will let Guido tell you a bit!
Chain D.L.K.: So for those new to your sound and to the band, describe your sound both in musical terms and from the heart, and what it means to you.
La Floa Maldita: We call our La Floa Maldita style „chanson electronic“. This term is the most suitable for the musical style. We combine movie score type elements with electronic and contemporary influences to archive a sort of timeless music. We do not care much about clichés or fashionable styles. The songs and music is to cure our own souls in the first place.
Chain D.L.K.: What does La Floa Maldita mean in English, and why did you pick this name?
La Floa Maldita: “La Floa Maldita” is a term that farmers in a South American country use for the nice flower poppy, which is used to produce narcotics that can cause addiction and death. That certain term came up to my mind, when I was in a bad personal situation with some friends and I wanted to draw a line between them and me because of their drug abuse. A nice flower that can cause death. Like our songs which are not predictable, start silently and turn into something bigger, which differs from the “music scene-soup-linearity”.
Chain D.L.K.: What are some of the inspirations behind your music?
La Floa Maldita: The main inspiration for our music are our momentous moods. If there‘s a period where we are in a good shape, we do not compose a lot. But if you mean musical inspiration, then I have to tell you, that this a wild mixture of styles that we are used to listen to or still do, from my orchestral, classical education that I had as a child, via electronic music like Gary Numan, a Flock of Seagulls or Skinny Puppy to more contemporary music like Deftones of Linkin Park just to mention a few known bands.
Chain D.L.K.: I notice a very romantic Parisian mood to the music, outside of the obvious reason of French vocals. I can easily hear ” L’Oasis” playing on a Parisian riverside at night where lovers hang out! Does the city or French culture in general influence your mood?
La Floa Maldita: No! We do not have any special feelings toward Paris, although it is a nice city, the city of love, but here you are interpreting something not intended. But, If you mean a feeling of melancholy and in the same time to be in love with somebody described in French words, then you hit the point.
Chain D.L.K.: I also notice a classical element to the music. Do you or Rhea have any classical training or does it come natural?
La Floa Maldita: When I was a child, my parents wanted me to learn a classical instrument and I played in a classical orchestra until the age of 14 and won some awards with that! But it never was my own will. Due to an accident I could not continue to play that instrument and I could liberate myself from parental chains and learn playing guitar, keyboards and drums, but my parents raised my interest in music was the good thing of that all. Rhea was in a school choir for a long time and had personal lesson in singing.
Chain D.L.K.: Tell us about your upcoming album, “Salut Jaques”.
La Floa Maldita: This album is the best we ever did. I mentioned the timeless factor in the LFM music. this term gets even more attention a telling that most of the „SJ“ songs are composed from 1995 to 1999. The album never stood under a good star! there was so much trouble and discussions with labels and lawyers that it did not come out when is should, like a baby that wants to stay in his mum‘s belly. We almost gave up…In the first days of 2002 the problems seem to be away. We arranged us with our former European/German label and discussed about an interesting release, like adding something around the music, because making just a CD was not a challenge anymore. The plan of bringing the music onto the screen was born, and it took us about a year to put together a DVD in addition to the CD. We didn‘t want a foreign company to have video ideas for us, but we wanted to convert our feelings of our music into our videos with the help of our close friends.
Chain D.L.K.: Would the single “Voyage, Voyage” be any indicator or is it something completely different considering it’s been a while between the two?
La Floa Maldita: The Voyage EP should be the first single for the upcoming album in 1999, but we couldn‘t find any label that was interested in us those days. The Voyage EP was released by KODEX in Europe, a label we were working from start with. The label became the management and we together tried to find a much bigger label that could promote our music in a better way, but we all failed. Mainstream won. Now, the Voyage EP is really more like a bridge in between the albums.
Chain D.L.K.: Any new elements mixed into the music, from different genres, such as synthpop or techno? Any organic instruments like violins or cellos involved?
La Floa Maldita: In my opinion, everything is different on this album from typical synthpop and techno CDs. There are no organic instruments as they are, I sampled much especially oral sounds like choirs and respiration noises. I used some metal type guitars and some jazzy influences, too. We really didn‘t care about the audience during composing the songs, I must admit.
Chain D.L.K.: Any plans to release it in America, given the good response to Destination: Heaven? Any plans to distribute for American audiences?
La Floa Maldita: By the time the interview took me to me to answer (about 3 months) we got a deal with WTII records. They‘ll release „Salut Jacques“ in the same package like in Europe. We got really nice mails from people who discovered us though the „destination: heaven“ CD from America…I really look forward to see the development in the next months.
Chain D.L.K.: Any plans to tour America if all goes well? I’m not quite sure if you ever toured America before. .
La Floa Maldita: LFM never toured in America. I‘m not sure if this would ever happen, there is too much hassle with touring and I do not want to spend all my money giving concerts! If there is a offer that carry at least all the cost, then we‘ll think about it.
Chain D.L.K.: I’m presuming most or all of the tracks will be in French. Is this correct or is there the occasional English song on it?
La Floa Maldita: Wrong. „SJ“ has got more English tracks on it than any other LFM CD before. I cannot really tell you the reason for. The choice in language for a tracks is mainly done by Rhea and the circumstances she is in, during the compositioning time of SJ, she were possibly more like in mood and feelings for English songs… remember: French is for love songs and English is more to complain about a certain problem.
Chain D.L.K.: Sometimes your style shifts from pop to classical. Which is easiest for you to play in the end? Do you think the two are totally mixable?
La Floa Maldita: I do not see any borderline. This must be because of my musical education. If the „two“ fit into a song for me, then it is ok. They do not need to fit, but I like the combination of feelings in the music though different styles, not only like two contemporary styles like rock and rap, but electronics with jazz and orchestral score combined with vocals. The two styles (classical/pop) are not really mixable, if you like to avoid awkward results. But, if you take single samples, idea, fragments, instruments into the other, then you can only win!
Chain D.L.K.: Will there ever be a reprint of the old material which is now sold out, or is it lost forever (if it is… . ). ?
La Floa Maldita: If there‘s not so much stress with lawyers or labels there could be a Re-release or reprint…let‘s hope and see. .
Chain D.L.K.: I saw where you played for a band called Second Voice, which Bigod 20 and La Floa Maldita came from. What was that group like? Did it have any affect on your style when La Floa started?
La Floa Maldita: That‘s history now. I was more than 50% of Second Voice and did all the music. The former SV singer was asked to sing for B20 (for him: more money, more interesting than SV. . ). In the beginning LFM was like my nursery for ideas that I could not realize with SV. But after there was no future for SV, LFM became my new home.
Chain D.L.K.: So, on a another note for just a second… . What is your take on the whole LePenn fiasco over there?
La Floa Maldita: Huh?
Chain D.L.K.: Any words of wisdom or interesting French phrases for us out there?
La Floa Maldita: Salut Jacques! Please check out our Website, the website of WTII-Records and the on of our European Label/Management. www. lafloamaldita. comwww. wtiirecords. comwww. kodex-media. de
Visit La Floa Maldita on the web at:
[interviewed by Shaun Hamilton] [proofreading by Erica Breyer]