Week in Pop: Fascinating, Pascale Project, WRITER

Sjimon Gompers

Chronicling the rise of Montreal's Pascale Mercier—aka Pascale Project; photographed by Alessandro aka l'homme viande.

Pascale Project

Catching up Montreal's Pascale Mercier, oka Project Pascale; photograph courtesy of the artist's Instagram.

Catching up Montreal’s Pascale Mercier, oka Project Pascale; photograph courtesy of the artist’s Instagram.

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Birmingham, Alabama imprint Noumenal Loom remains as one of the world’s greatest champions of international artistry & arts that operate on ethics & disciplines of everything from both holistic craft practices to entertaining the new frontiers of musical-tek that all push the conversations to the next page/level. Consider the excellence of Jasper Lee’s awe-inspiring LP Mirror of Wind, the nu-mystic majesty of Ethereal & the Queer Show’s Fairy Super Crystal Blue, the label’s own wild prolific Compilation series, Foodman & countless other artists that have courted the label in recent years; today we had the chance to catch up with the label’s latest signing of rising star Pascale Mercier, oka Pascale Project who describes her upcoming 7AM release for Noumenal Loom (available April 20) and more. Formerly of the Montreal outfit Mathematique; Pascale paints from the familiar aesthetic palates of local Arbutus Records electro-art-pop contemporaries and continues to hone her own audio craft to sleeker defined economies of dance focused dialogues.

The increased attitude of sophisticated dilettante dance pop was made known with the release of Just Feel Good For a Moment back in the late summer of 2015. From the gorgeous ambient opening of “Welcome To You (ILU So much)” to the tranquil feels of “Little Lounge”; synths fall like rain of edifying expressions that bask in senses of nearly inexpressable euphoria. This introduction to Mercier’s Pascale Project presents the blueprint of distinguished & lush electronically accentuated dance pop with a whole lotta feeling (as experienced on the title track for “Just Feel Good For a Moment”), entertaining the enhancements & inspired enchantment of digital instruments & tools to express one-of-a-kind phenomenons like “Super Natural”, the discourse of “Don’t You”, the inquisitive introspection of “Why Me”, where outstanding questions arrive in the sensual pools of serenity on “Sexy Inc”, to the possibly maybe dance-floor exchanges of pure illumination on “I Am Maybe”.

Which brings us to Pascale Project’s new title track single “7AM” that manages to encapsulate both the most hedonistic exchanges of evening decadence to that stark feeling of day breaking. Pascale sets up the chance encounter of amorous & intriguing attractions as she engages in some of the most precise progressive house keyboard arrangements that bridge all of yesterday’s warehouse jams with today’s vibes & feels. Reiterations of “tonight” & “who do you love” start initiating digitized sparks to shoot from everyone in the mix as “7AM” connects the quests of discovering romance through the glow of club lights & the blurry luminous haze of the city’s utility street lamp glow that lights the path between decadent venues to the sanctuary of one’s own private quarters. Pascale Project paints the emotions, sensations & more that chronicle the events of an enchanted evening spent with a special someone where 7pm in the evening quickly turns into 7am in the morning in just a little bit over 5 minutes. Read our interview with Pascale Mercier right after the following listen:

How did the super-charged electro project—Pascale Project—first dawn?

Well, it first started when I was 15, I think I was sick of playing drums in bands and then got more into electronic music. At first it was completely instrumental and I was using garage band, then years later I made the switch to Ableton live and also started singing, which made my music way more interesting for me, felt like I had more possibilities.

The name of the tape & single “7AM” is a time that refers to that real kick-blast start to the day when it seems like so much of life both in the city & the country really gets humming. What sorts of significance do you find in the time frame of seven o’clock in the morning?

I guess it’s not all about 7am precisely, it’s more about that feeling when you walk home from a party and it’s early in the morning and you see people going to work or your neighbour you don’t really know going for a run. Sometimes it makes you feel very depressed and you’re just like ‘oh god I hope i don’t run into anybody that i know cause i probably look awful’. Or sometimes you just don’t care and you’re thinking about all the fun you had during the party. But yeah, i guess i thought ’7am’ sounded good, it couldve been 5 or 6am too.

With a Montreal by way of Berlin sensibility of things; what do you currently really dig about Montreal right now?

I’ve been in Montreal for almost six years now, and obviously it changed. DIY spaces keep being shut down and then there’s nothing happening for while, then there’s a new thing and it’s fun for a while, etc. Montreal has its good waves, but sometimes there’s just nothing interesting happening, unfortunately… Most of my friends make music and some of them work really hard to put on some nice parties and stuff but it’s hard to keep going, cause it’s all about doing it yourself you know, it takes so much time and energy.. and then everyone is so broke in Montreal, there’s no way to make good money with these kind of parties, which sucks.

In conversation with Pascale Project's Pascale Mercier; photographed by François Quillacq.

In conversation with Pascale Project’s Pascale Mercier; photographed by François Quillacq.

…and then what do you really dig about Berlin right now?

Ha ha, I just love Berlin for the clubs, I love dancing to good music. You don’t have that in Montreal, that’s why I go to Berlin once in a while. Sometimes you just need to spend the weekend in a really dark club and don’t worry about anything.

Tell us too about the sorts of creative progressions & journeys that took you from Mathematique to Pascale Project.

Well the singing part definitely changed everything, it just made much more sense to me. Of course at the beginning I didn’t really know how to sing ha ha, but then I feel like in the past two years I really started to feel comfortable with singing. But besides that, the name change really helped to move forward, it felt like the name was a weight on me in some way…I just didn’t rely to it anymore, so the writing process was kinda going nowhere.

Project Pascale on the decks; photographed by François Quillacq.

Project Pascale on the decks; photographed by François Quillacq.

What are some of your own personal approaches to creating that super deep & multi-level/cross-style/post-genre pop platform from beyond just Ableton Live?

I just go to a lot of parties and listen to a bunch of music. I also really enjoy DJing, so I guess it inspires me in some way when it comes to writing a song. It’s really important to take notes, wherever I am I just write down a bunch of stuff in my phone. It can be lyrics ideas or just some thoughts/stories about things that happened to me or wish that happened to me.

Other Montreal & Berlin & everywhere artists that you dig that the world should be listening to/talking about right now?

Woah there are so many…but I’d definitely say Antoine93. Besides being my best friend, he’s also the most hard working person that I know without a doubt. He makes the best pop music and it sounds super pro, I really wish I had the patience to put that amount of time into the production of my music, he inspires me every day.

Spring & summer dreams & goals?

Write a new album, be more productive and definitely get a nice tan.

Pacale Project’s 7AM will be available April 20 via Noumenal Loom.

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