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Interview with

Neige (guitar, vocals) of Alcest

After having been on tour for the first time in March 2010, ALCEST were pretty relaxed when they arrived in Eisenberg for the 2nd Black Troll Winterfest. We used this opportunity to walk a few meters in the snow with the band-head Neige and talk about the upcoming album, the new year and other things...

Reflections of Darkness (RoD): So, Neige, thanks for taking some time to talk with me. Was it stressful to get here seeing you played in Eindhoven last night?
Neige: You're welcome. It wasn't as stressful as we thought it would be. But we had to do all our merchandise right now, which was totally stressful... I don't like this.

RoD: I heard you plan a new album for 2011. Can you tell me a little bit more about it?
Neige: The album itself is almost finished by now. But of course there is still a lot to do. For example I still need a cover, which definitely takes some time. And I want it get done by Fursy Teyssier again.

RoD: Do you already have some idea of when you will release this and are there any other plans for ALCEST in 2011?
Neige: I think the new album will be released in late 2011, it's not sure yet. And actually we have some good plans for 2011, yes. For once we will be playing at a lot of different metal festivals in Germany other countries, and we will play a tour together with DORNENREICH, after they finish their own tour in February. I am really looking forward to this tour, and of course I'm excited about playing at some festivals, too. So you see, we have a lot of new experiences before us and we will be busy in 2011.

RoD: To speak about another topic; I don't know if you noticed it, but there are a lot of people who talk about you in the highest tones and "idolize" you somewhat. You could say that there's a serious "Neige-hype" going on, people describe you as a pure genius and say that you're unreachable and things like that... What do you say about all of this?
Neige: I think that all of this is stupid, honestly. The main background of ALCEST is that we believe in a life before this life and that we want to take the listeners back to that place to show them the place and all of its beauties. For me it is all about those feelings and impressions and I would never say I'm a genius for the music I play. You know in this case it's "just music". It's hard to explain, but the music itself is only a tool to "translate" our thoughts and feelings so that other people can follow us... To make them see, to make them feel, too, you know?

RoD: So you see yourself as a "man in the middle"?
Neige: Exactly... I mean there's really nothing special about me. I have normal friends  and I like to go to parties, too. I'm just the one who's playing the music. Not more, not less. You know, it could have been that someone else showed this world those feelings and impressions in a different way, it could have been photographs or books, or anything else.

RoD: What do you think is important when you want to play music and be "different" with what you're doing?
Neige: The most important fact is to get as much different influences as you can. But you have to be very careful that you don't get influenced too much be one specific band, otherwise there's the possibility that you will sound way too much like them. In my case it's not different, I love black metal and it will always be one of my biggest influences, but I like older bands and other genres a lot, too.

RoD: When I'm in search for information about your person I can't find much at all... Does this have any special reason?
Neige: Well, I'm actually a quiet shy person. I think you already noticed that... It is just really not my goal to be very present in the media. I don't think that's important and I don't want this to change, because I prefer to stay out of this. I mean, I don't even write e-mails often and stuff like that. And I'm totally not interested in media when it comes down to me, I want my privacy and that's it.

RoD: Okay, Neige, it was great to talk to you here. Have a good show tonight and the last words belong to you.
Neige: Thank you, hopefully see you sometime next year.

All pictures by Josi Pajung

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