Back when I used to skate, oh yes I once did, I loved listening to a lot of thrash-punk hardcore. Bands like Agent Orange, Descendents, Fugazi, Minor Threat, 7Seconds, Bad Brains (endless list) and a ton of straight-edge. That raw, fast, harsh sound with heavy distortion still sticks with me to this day. Thrash never sounded so good, especially on the dance floor and when it has been produced or remixed by a favorite Frenchie, Simon DeLacroix – The Toxic Avenger.
Toxie’s music is the epitomy of that heavy, beautiful distortion. Upon hearing his remix of ‘Sexual Earthquake in Kobe – Love with Chloé Sevigny,’ I immediately fell in love! Brash, bold, distinguished elements that create Toxic’s sound. Not a newcomer to music, he’s been creating it for quite some time, dabbling in various genres and signed to the growing iheartcomix Records within the past year. It isn’t just the Ed Bangers that hold court in France these days.
Intrigued by his music, I decided to do some research on “the Toxic one”. Of course I found some more great music Toxic Remixes but not much information on him – Well, not in English, just French! So for those that desire to know a bit more, and can’t “parlez français”, get to know this poker playin, rockstar dreamin, comic lovin, trash ragin, super-hero!!!!
Toxic Avenger – Stage Divin’ <– ACE exclusive track!!
Lovestar: Tell us a bit about the man behind the mask, Simon DeLacroix, “The Toxic Avenger”.
Simon: Oh! Is there really a man behind the mask? The thing is, I don’t even remember when I first put this mask on and why I put it on?! Maybe it’s because I’m pretty shy, and the mask helped me exteriorize myself while on stage… Otherwise I don’t know what I can tell you about me… I’m a hoodie collector, I’m a big fan of The Smiths, (Morrissey’s band), and a big fan of Weezer too. I live in Paris (where every stranger thinks is THE place of the new French electro sound, which is totally wrong! Like.. “Tell me please where I can see busy p or Justice playing!!!” “Well … they’re in Japan for the moment…”).
Lovestar: Do you find similarities between yourself and The Toxic Avenger, the comic book character that you dubbed yourself after?
Simon: Yeah! In the movie Melvin is an awful guy, he becomes The Toxic Avenger so he can save the world and be with beautiful girls – That’s exactly me!
Lovestar: Did you ever have aspirations to be anything other than being a musician or was this what you wanted to be for as long as you can recall?
Simon: NO! I’ve played music in bands since I was 12yo. First in punk bands – I was the guitarist and the lead singer. Then in some hardcore metal bands who had little success (one band, “Comity” have continued on without me, you can find it on myspace). Time passed and I fell in love with a girl who was working at an electro radio station and also fell in love with this style of music. It was, I don’t know, maybe 8 years ago. I started to create music with a low budget computer. It sounded soooo bad so I added some heavy saturation to it.. And it sounded pretty good! That is how my sound was born.
Lovestar: Along with creating music under the name ‘The Toxic Avenger,’ you also are involved with other projects – including an electro rock band, The Black Milk and the hip-hop group, Ed Wood is Dead Please tell us about the three.
Simon: Well, Ed Wood is Dead is a band that celebrates B movies via Hip hop music and comedy; I do instrumentals on this one. The Black Milk is an electro rock band where I play guitars & synths. The goal is to do the anthem of the century. Well… We are still working at it!
Lovestar: What led you to make the kind of music that you do – your inspirations/influences?
Simon: OST of 70′s / 80′s B & Z movies! Every vulgar dance tune, worst Emotronic bands with Autotune, Kylie Minogue. I love easy emotion in music – you know, not like bands like Radiohead or things like that.. ‘Rise and Fall’s’ Craig David make me cry, ‘Karma Police’ doesn’t!
Lovestar: Do you apply these influences to the music you make?
Simon: I hope so! Well, I don’t search to do quality music; I try to make instant music. You know, a summer hit. If one person associates one of my songs to a moment in his life then I’m happy. Like, if a young boy kisses his first girl with a toxic tune, it’ll make me happy (but if can make quality music at the same thing, it’s better, of course)!
Lovestar: How do you approach a remix and what is it about a track that makes you want to remix it?
Simon: I can remix even unknown bands. It’s all about feeling. I’ve remixed everything from peaches to a 16yo Texan band! My most known remix is a remix of a completely unknown French band called Sexual Earthquake in Kobe; it’s my favorite remix ever! But Kylie, if you’re reading this, I’d love to remix any of your tracks, for free! (haha)
Lovestar: It’s a coincidence and seems quite fitting that you are named after a comic book character and you are working with iheartcomix Records – Whose owner Franki Chan makes comic books. How did that opportunity come about?
Simon: I made my first remix a while ago by a guy named The Secret Handshake, who’s LP was composed by Ocelot Mthrfckrs who are in IHC! Franki heard the remix and asked me to give him more tunes. I had other label opportunities when I signed with IHC! But I love the way Franki does things with his label and I love the artists who are on IHC! Matt & Kim, Ocelot, etc. You know Toxic Avenger is also a movie!
Lovestar: What can we expect from your upcoming debut EP?
Simon: Just tunes you can party to! With good remixes by The Bloody Beetroots (who have done remixes for Etienne de Crecy, Alex gopher, The Whip, and who work with Rhinocerose and Asia Argento) and Mixhell (who’s the ex drummer of Sepultura, but he’s doing electro right now). That’s for the 12″. There certainly will be some bonus tracks for the digital version.
Here’s the track listing for the 12″:
1- Superheroes 2007
2- Superheroes (Bogart & the Addictives remix)
3- Superheroes (Mixhell Earplugged remix)
5- Escape (The bloody beetroots remix)
And it’s out in the U.S 14th of September!
Lovestar: What do you hope to achieve in the coming future?
Simon: I’m actually doing my LP, it’ll be a little more pop, and I hope it will sound exactly like I want! With more voices etc. But with, I hope, some dance floor killers too! And I give you the intro, demo version, just for you Denise heh : )
Lovestar: (sorry guys, that is just for me!! hehe)
Simon: I will work on things with & The Secret Handshake – something you can dance and cry to! AhAh! I will also be working on the !Trash Yourself project, which is a band with Heidi Cannon on vocals, and John Burke & I as composers. We are working on a debut album – something very powerful, you know like if the hives did electro – with a touch of sexuality to it!
I’ll tour Australia in September, and the U.S in October. The first gig will be @ Echoplex, L.A with juiceboxxx & my friends Bonde do Role But I hope to play a gig in Vegas on this U.S tour cause I’m a big poker player!
Last but not least, I will be working on the video clip of Superheroes 2007! It’s gonna be fun, I can assure you!
Official Remixes :
The secret handshake – Too young
Philipe de Boyar – World is yours
Ocelot Mthrfckrs – Lo Sforzo
Le Castle Vania – Tigertron
John Burke – What is love
Dragonette – Take it like a man
Late of the pier – Space and the woods
Sexual Earthquake in Kobe – Love with Chloé Sevigny ( Dance music )
The Whip – Muzzle n°1 Malente – Manrox
Tommie Sunshine w/ Peaches & Nick Zimmer – Dance among the ruins
Sly & the gayz – Coco Chic
Saint Pauli – I Need Riddim
Pivot – Fck me baby!
Malente – This manrox
The Toxic Avenger – superheroes 2007 ( Toxic Self remix )
Work in Progress:
Scenario rock – Perfect love
Vegastar – Mode arcade
Blur – Song 2
Roger sanchez – Another chance
Prodigy – No good
Beastie boys – Sure shot