Aksak Maboul interview

Founded in 1977 by Marc Hollander with Vincent Kenis, this is the seminal Crammed band, which explored several directions later followed by the label (set up by Hollander three years later). Each of Aksak’s three albums to date is stylistically different, yet shares a common foundation with the two others.

We are very excited about your upcoming Aksak Maboul album. How did you decide to form a new live incarnation of the band?

Marc Hollander: The new band was created in the wake of the release of the record now known as Ex-Futur Album. As you may know, this was meant to be the third Aksak Maboul album. From 1980 to 1983, in between our tours with the third incarnation of Aksak Maboul (which then morphed into The Honeymoon Killers), vocalist Véronique Vincent and myself had been working on a series of tracks which explored the avant-electronic pop end of the Aksak spectrum. They incorporated quite a few strange elements for conventional pop music, at the time. We weren’t happy with the tracks, and meanwhile the label was starting to take up most of my time, so we left the album in an unfinished state (though it had been announced right from the inception of Crammed Discs, in our very first catalogue, back in 1981!).

“Explored the avant-electronic pop end of the Aksak spectrum”

Thirty years later, in 2014, we started thinking that the time may be right for releasing these unfinished songs. We mixed the tracks that could be mixed (because we had multitrack tapes for them), and retrieved some others from demos, did some editing between versions that were sometimes on cassettes, etc. We were planning on doing a kind of archival, low-profile release, but the reactions were enthusiastic, and Ex-Futur Album was extremely well received by the media and the pubic, and by many young musicians who operate in similar fields.