Twenty years ago, two young Parisians, Etienne De Crécy and Philippe Zdar, discovered techno for the first time at a rave called Transbody Express. "It makes such an impact on us that we don't miss a single one of the raves organized near the capital for the next year" writes de Crécy in the liner notes for Essentials, a new album that's part greatest-hits collection, part Bildungsroman. "We come up with the crazy idea of making an album. We want to include some less techno tracks on it so that normal friends of ours who listen to normal music can listen to it too and not give us weird looks afterwards."
Fortunately for us, de Crécy's idea of "normal" never quite squared with anyone else's, leading to the deliciously off-kilter house of Motorbass, his duo with Zdar, and his supermarket-themed project Superdiscount—and leading de Crécy to "completely fail in my ambition to make thoroughbred, abstract music! Just as well!"
Across 17 tracks, Essentials documents de Crécy's endeavours to "fail again, fail better," as Samuel Beckett might have put it, compiling canonical tracks from Super Discount, Motorbass' Pansoul, and de Crécy's Tempovision along with selected compilation cuts and even the brief soundtrack to a Renault commercial. ("My friend Antoine Bardou-Jacquet… has no trouble getting me chosen to do the music for an advertising spot," recalls de Crécy. "He's got good taste, so he chooses the best track from the demos I give him. And I'm grateful to him for choosing the one I can't develop beyond a minute!")
The compilation is out next week; today, De Crécy is giving away "Prix Choc," his iconic contribution to 1997's Super Discount. Stream it here, and download it by clicking through to the track's SoundCloud page; see below for de Crécy's North American tour dates.
Etienne de Crécy – North American Tour, Fall 2012
Tue Oct 23 : Los Angeles, CA. Dim Mak Studios (DJ set)
Wed Oct 24 : Costa Mesa, CA. Detroit Bar (DJ set)
Fri Oct 26 : Los Angeles, CA. Vanguard Hotel (DJ set)
Sat Oct 27 : New Orleans, LA. Voodoo Festival (live set)
Tue Oct 30 : Denver, CO. Lipstick (DJ set)
Wed Oct 31 : San Francisco, CA. Blasthaus (DJ set)
Sat Nov 03 : Mexico City, Festival Nevada (live set)
Sun Nov 04 : Austin, TX. Fun Fun Festival (live set)
Mon Nov 05 : New York, NY. Santos Party House (DJ set)