With the release of their full-length debut, 2017’s À jamais privé de réponses and two EPs, 2016’s 2016’s Jeunes instants EP and 2019’s Jettatura EP, rising Montreal-based indie electro pop duo Paupiére — visual artist Julia Daigle and Polipe’s and We Are Wolves‘ Pierre-Luc Bégin — quickly established a sound that features and meshes elements of 80s English synth pop and New Wave with French chanson. But underneath the breezy melodies and infectious hooks, the Quebecois duo’s work thematically touches upon naive, adolescent and hedonistic romanticism and a contemporary sense of ennui.
Last year, the Montreal-based electro pop duo released their sophomore album, the Vincent Levesque-produced Sade Sati, an album that featured singles like:
“Coeur monarque,” an infectious and sugary sweet pop confection centered around shimmering synth arpeggios, skittering polyrhythmic beats and boy-girl harmonies. Sonically, the song is a playful, hook-driven mix of Phil Spector-era pop and Ace of Base-like synth pop — but thematically, as the duo explain the song is much darker: “‘Coeur Monarque’ is an imaginary tale about a girl, who lives her life according to her moods. Her freedom contributes to her isolation and she loses herself in it.”
“Sade Sati,” which derived its title from a term in Indian astrology, a period of 7.5 years that involves many challenges but also recognition and great achievements. It’s karma, the sum of the arts of the present life but also of previous ones, the duo explain in press notes. Much like its immediate predecessor, the album title track is a sugary sweet pop confection, featuring an enormous hook and shimmering synth arpeggios paired with Daigle’s sultry delivery describing the movements of the planets — in this case, Saturn — and how they influence all the aspects of our lives.
Paupiére recently released a deluxe edition of Sade Sati that features two instrumentals, which were recorded during the Sade Sati sessions but were left off, a remix by Canadian electronic music artist Das Mörtal and five songs recorded at the album’s virtual launch at Montreal’s Le Ministére (on the digital version only). And to celebrate the occasion, the duo recently shared, their latest single, the atmospheric “New Balance.”
Centered around Bégin’s breathy delivery, glistening synths and a relentless motorik-like groove, the slow-burning “New Balance” is a fever dream full of regret, hope, and the recognition that every day is a chance to start anew — even if there may not be a second chance to get it right.
Directed by French-born, Quebec-based animator Lauren Haddock, the accompanying video for “New Balance” follows Paupiére’s Pierre-Luc Bégin as he runs through one fantastic world after another, and eventually into space.