A Chat With: Foreign Diplomats
On one of the last good days of summer, I got to chat with the boys of Foreign Diplomats at the first edition of the Mile Ex End Music Festival. Élie, Emmanuel, Charles, Antoine (aka Tony) and Thomas spoke to me about their plans for new music, their love of touring and find out who peed on who!
Photo: Coralie Daigneault
Your first album came out in 2015, is there any new music coming soon?
Yeah! We have a lot of new songs actually and we’re starting to add some to the set to play them and let them become something else. I think we could do 2 albums right now, we just have to find the time to go in the studio to do all the songs, try them live and know them but we always have shows and we don’t have the time; which is a good problem but its still a problem.
Do you have any plans of going in studio soon or its in the air?
A little bit in the air I guess. We did a couple pre production things just to try different things in the studio. They have the studio at our label, Indica, so we tried a couple things there but nothing real.
For the moment I think we’ll be more focused on that for sure because we have a little break. We won’t have as many shows so we’re gonna try to figure out something to push it to make a new album.
What lyric are you most proud of on the album or on something coming up?
That’s a good question. We really like the ‘ohs’ thats our favourite one. It's really deep and it has a lot of meaning to it, when you’re angry or happy you can do an ‘ooh oh’ and it works!
What artists or music inspire you?
There’s always the same trio of artist that are the bands that we really love. Its LCD Soundsystem, Wolf Parade and Death From Above 1979. They’re the bands we really love and that have influenced us but it kind of changes. There’s so many bands that we listen too and that have influenced us. Even the bands that we have the chance to discover on stage while we’re touring, I can’t say a band right now but just to see other bands performing live is always cool.
Photo: Michael Kovacs
You guys have been touring a lot, how has that been?
Totally fun, we love touring! We’re kind of getting used to it more, we’re better at it, and we’re better together in the van cause we’re always together you know, we don’t really like each other, we still fight a lot but it's okay. Its more physical now, there’s a reason why Thomas has his shades on hahah. Its always cool to look at the tour book and see where were going, we’re always discovering new cities and new countries so its pretty awesome.
You guys went to Europe and South America, how was that?
It was great! South America was awesome, it's a totally different crowd. We went with three other bands from Montreal; Chocolat, Les Deuxluxes and Random Recipe. We did the whole tour with those bands and we got to know each other really well and the crowds were very responsive, it was really nice. The music scene over there is starting to grow, its not really there yet and so it was fun to be there. They’re hungry, they want to see more shows of bands they don’t know, especially when you’re from another country. And in Europe, we’re getting our album out in like France and Germany so its always getting bigger and bigger which is exciting.
How are the crowds here compared to overseas?
It's really different. Its different how we consume the shows, like here its more of a party and everyone’s excited and the band is partying with the crowd, but in Europe what I saw is people are more listening to the band and they really like it, and there’s a moment where they party but its more about listening, they listen to the songs and what the band is doing. I think the common crowd overseas is more critic than in Quebec. Even if they don’t cheer or really react, at the end they’re really happy and sometimes its scary because you just don’t know. Especially in France, french people don’t dance but they come to talk to you after the show like ‘oh man it was really good, fucking awesome!’
Yeah, so its hard to tell in the moment
Yeah, we would go backstage after the show and be like ‘shit that was shitty show’ but then we would go out and the people loved it.
What’s a tour story you can tell me?
Hahaha, okay this is a new story.
Charles: So, it was two and a half weeks ago, we were just finishing our tour in Germany, fifth show in 5 days. These guys went to sleep and I went out drinking with a friend and I woke up in the middle of then night, at like 6 in the morning, we were in the same room but I had slept in another room so I was sleepwalking to his room, I was fully naked and I was peeing on him while he was sleeping.
Emmanuel: I woke up and I saw his face and I was like ‘what the fuck?!’ He doesn’t remember anything. I was like ‘stop peeing!’ and he was like 'I’m not peeing you’re peeing!’
Antoine: Thomas and I woke him up the next morning and he was like ‘I don’t think thats a true story.’
Hahaha, at least it wasn’t in your face
Emmanuelle: No, it was just on my arm and my chest
Charles: Its good for the skin
What’s one thing you guys want to accomplish as a band before the new year?
Finish an album we’re proud of. We don’t want to make something that we’re 80% satisfied with, which might take time but we want something we’re 100% proud of.
Élie: I want to release Tony’s porn movie before the new year, or make the second version.
Tony: It’s called Lick My Face.
Élie: I just want to release it.
Tony: Do we call it Lick My Face Volume 2?, that sounds better.
Élie: Yeah, it's a trilogy so volume sounds better
Back to touring, you guys toured with the 3 other bands and did a show with Vance Joy, how was that?
It was fun! It was the biggest crowd we’ve ever played to, it was almost 20 thousand people and we were not expecting that kind of crowd. We were just getting back from les Iles de la Madeleine so we were in a totally different vibe. We were chilling on the beach and then we hoped off the plane and played to this giant crowd. We did a good show, it was amazing. And its cool to see the difference between the small club shows and big shows for the public but for us there’s no difference because we put on the same show. Its kind of cool to see that we’re as comfortable, or maybe even more on a big stage rather than a small club. We can be more stressed to play a small show than a big one, its almost impersonal because you don’t feel the crowd, there’s not as much eye contact and theres a distance but still you have to create that contact, you have to have something you know.