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Blog, DIY Album, Musicians' Diary

9 months or 4 years? + album Inês big up-date


Dear all,

It has been considerable long time without any up-date from us. Probably because sometimes our progress is so slow that we even barely seem to notice any.

For B album, I remember we started on the 1st of January 2014 on the very first drafts (though we had some ideas of compositions already, or had been working on them for live performances). Anyway, on the 1st of October 2014 we collected the promo samples freshly pressed from the factory. In the meantime we had recorded all the tracks, developed new sounds, new arrangements, done concerts in France, Belgium, and set up our 2 first UK tours, also set up all the legal side, made the artwork for the booklet, edited countless teasers and music videos. That’s 9 months sharp full time into music.

For Project Inês album we must have got the idea around july 2014. Actually while working on the lyrics for Gwerz Inês. The story was so deep that we couldn’t choose a proper angle until we thought we would leave most of it for next album.

Mid 2015 we were already doing some progress on the lyrics/music, and had many ideas about the concept. Broad lines, but most of it was there. At the end of summer 2015 the finances we had asside had gone, and we had to come back to Brittany full time where Yann has been mostly working full time as a teacher. We’ve done the best use we could of holidays for gigs/tours until 2017.

Ar Maured o kuitaat Iberia / The Moors driven away from the Peninsula. Artwork for the concept album Inês (medieval love story between Pedro King of Portugal and Inês de Castro)
Ar Maured o kuitaat Iberia / The Moors driven away from the Peninsula.

We’ve had many ideas for Inês Project. Many. Many musical directions that didn’t work, mostly because we realised it wouldn’t be doable for the 2 of us to set up the ambitious sounds we had in mind at first.

So we did what we always do: one step at the time, we do what is doable. We do with the limited time/money/means we have. We make the most of it, and try to go around limitations, turn them into challenges. Most of the time.

At least we try. When we look back we realise that maybe, we also lost a lot of time by not being focused enough in what matters : creating music. Sometimes we get bitter, anxious, and only see the limitations. They are challenging limitations. Not travelling much is a major source of sadness for sure. Everytime you leave the music for something else, you need to get back into the mood. As quickly as possible! But there’s no other way than to do with what is, right?

Almost 4 years later… that’s starting to be painful, at a certain time, we need to switch to something else too. So, to give you an clear up-date at where we are at…

  • Lyrics are mostly all written, there might be a need for some changes as we go threw the vocals recording.
  • We have all of the tracks structures, sounds, ambiances with minor changes that will occur once vocals will be in place.
  • Most of instruments played by Yann are finalised (guitars, drums, ud and violin).
  • We have a clearer idea about the guests and what they’re doing on which track.
  • We have a clear frame for our crowdfunding campaign (we’ll be using Indiegogo), time frame, money goals, rewards, etc…
  • I have a structure for most of the artwork for every song.

What’s still to be done:

  • Record all the vocals.
  • Get our guests’ tracks to add to the mix.
  • Create most of the artwork – and there’s a lot to be created. Confession time: I need to have to music before I actually can paint. Probably that’s a limiting belief as well!
  • Edit all the graphics for the booklet with all the lyrics + notes.
  • Finalise the mix/master.
  • Translate all the lyrics in French/English.
  • Set up and launch the crowdfunding campaign. That’s a huge part! Includes a lot of promo, editing some videos too, printing some artwork for rewards too. And for that… we need the artwork !
  • All the legal side of the project – taxes – authorisations – etc…

Put that way, we can’ say there hasn’t been any progress ! Wish us luck and plenty of energy.

A galon / with heart,

– Simone.

 

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Blog, Musicians' Diary, Sound & Video

Arvest Kafe tv show


Scène Arvest Café

Last December we’ve been invited by Arvest Kafe team for a music show during which we performed some songs – interview is in breton but with french subtitles, you may be able to follow or just go straight to the music !

http://www.tebeo.bzh/replay/183-arvest-kafe

Blog, Sound & Video

The Tale of the Coffee Mug [video]


The Tale of the Coffee Mug that set itself free. A true story, inspired by our road trip, our love for travel and freedom, and with a music initially planned for next album Inês.
And obsiosly driven by Yann’s legendary passion for coffee !
(sorry, wordpress seems not to want to integrate our video today, you’ll have to follow the link, but it worths it! We promise, the music is beautiful ! Click the pic ! )
The Tale of the Coffee Mug - van life
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Video script & edit : Simone Alves
Music : Yann Gourvil & traditional from Brittany
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Support our music and future projects! Stream/share/buy/gift our music :
Or visit Simone’s Art shop : https://www.etsy.com/no-en/shop/RosaBorboniana

 

Blog, Musicians' Diary, Sound & Video

Music under the Northern Lights


A small animation made with pictures of Northern Lights – we wish we had the equipment to film this beautiful show.
Music was the primary study for next album Inês (based on a medieval portuguese love story – and a true tragic love story !). Since we completely changed the idea, you still may enjoy it without spoiling it ! Again, a new concept by Astrakan Project : the fake teaser !

Honestly it is weird for us to imagine very soon when we’ll head to the South we won’t be scrutinising the sky for the magical Northern Lights.

montage fourgon nordlys

Support our music by sharing it!

Blog, Musicians' Diary

One month in the fascinating North lands.


Is it been a month already? It is, and we celebrated it the best way we could think of by making music!

A month can be a lot. It can bring a lot of changes. But deepest and more meaningful changes are the ones that first happen in the inside.

We needed a big change from the world we know, from our habits, from our daily life to get us to the point we could brew and create something new and different. We know it’s the usual life of most artists, but really it is hard to free our creative minds after day jobs. That’s what we’ve mostly done for years, with the small exception of B album, we had the luxury to have a full time year ahead (with some tours of course) to focus on it. A fantastic year! Then when it was over, we were left with plenty of ideas for new music.

3 years down the road.

YES. 3 years since our last reliese.

It’s mad to realise/admit it.

It’s not about free time. It’s about free mind time. Emptiness. Silence. Freedom.

It’s about believing deep inside it is possible to go ahead and free that music out from our heads. When we push our travelling boundaries to new horizons, we quiet our minds down.

It is possible to drive accros the polar circle from Brittany.

It is possible to live wildly in the magnificent surroundings of Northern Norway, and refresh our minds with the river waters.

It is possible to come and see the Northern Lights in the summer.

It is possible in 2017 to keep birthing the music we carry within.

Blog, Musicians' Diary

On the road is where we fell happy!


Happy, alive and inspired.

Yann’s passport arrived yesterday, we are already somewhere in Normandy, for a very long trip…

We hope to cross the polar circle in Sweden very soon, and record next albums (yes, it’s da plural!) from there. Polar days will unfortunately already be over (when sun doesn’t set at all) but days will still be quite long. We’re madly excited about this adventure, we’ll discover the Sami territory across Sweden, Norway and Finland. Their shamanic drums and painted stones have been a fascinating source of inspiration for Simone’s paintings and drawings used for B album.

More to come for sure!

Blog, Musicians' Diary

Road-trip diary 2


Last thing we need to depart will be in our hands within hours: Yann’s brand new passport! We have all the rest and the mysterious destination will soon be revealed, though this video might give you a clue ?

Blog, Musicians' Diary, Sound & Video

Soon on the road again!


It’s been months since we’ve been thinking about what our next big road-trip could be, and it took a lot of energy to make sure we could make it happen, but we’re almost there, last passport should be there on Wednesday, and we’ll be ready to go. Where? To a mysterious magical destination from which we’ll work on plenty of new sounds and songs!

We’ve been quite a lot in Brittany over the last past months, and we really need a change and a boost of fresh air to get back on track and record. This time we aren’t going to have any gig on the way (though, we’re always ready for what shows up!), little health issues over the past year haven’t helped us to organise sustainable tours during the summer. So we thought we would dedicate that time to make some real progress on all what we’ve had on hold since we left Greece by the end of 2015. And it’s gonna be an adventure we’re thrilled to share with you!

Complete guided tour of our new studio on wheels coming soon too!

If you’re on facebook, it might be where we share our daily progress: http://facebook.com/astrakanproject)

Blog, Sound & Video

Road trip + street art + music all in one!


#shamanstick is a land & street art project around “En Anv Doue ma Mamm” is which we combined most of our passions: music, visual arts, video making, road trip and Breton language. PdF with artwork HR pics will be coming soon!

This adventure is being quite fulfilling, and we have many ideas for our next travels!


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Song from album B http://astrakanproject.bandcamp.com/album/astrakan-project-b
Artwork project #shamanstick & video edit by Simone Alves 2017
Music “En anv Doue ma Mamm”
Lyrics & music base: traditional, Brittany
Arrang : Astrakan Project
© & ® simone alves & yann gourvil 2014

Roadtrip Be+Nl+Dk+Sv april 2017