Maloya electronics of Labelle lives at first as an experience, an accelerator of imagination. Either sung or either declaimed, in the tradition of fonnkèrs from Réunion Island, rhythmical, electronic or more experimental, he is constantly surprising by his capacity to pull atmospheres and by the introspection which he generates.
Resolutely syncretic, the universe of Labelle unites maloya (from Reunion traditional music) and electronics, colored with Indian and African touches, to give birth to a new shape flirting with the universality.
On stage, Labelle lives in its music and invites the public in the meditative depth, in the dance, even in the trance.
Labelle was born in Rennes, Brittany, to a Réunionnais father who came to France in the 1970s, and a Metropolitan French mother. When he was a child, the family home was alive with a medley of musical styles and sensibilities: the music of the Indian Ocean, his amateur-musician father’s séga, Jean-Michel Jarre’s trippy synths (his mother’s favorite), and the Detroit techno brought home by his brother.
As a teenager he discovered maloya, a style of traditional Réunion music that dates back to the days of colonization – and slavery, andwas banned for decades by a conservative and assimilationist government, which sought to erase the style’s autonomist and secessionist roots. While training to mix the likes of Derrick May and Jeff Mills, Labelle began making parallels between the politicized discourses of Underground Resistance and the issues brought forth by Réunionnais musicians, and between two musical movements that share a certain vision of trance and escapism.
A few years later, he widened his spectrum of personal musical knowledge by studying musicology “in a broad sense, ranging from ethnic music to jazz and contemporary music”. While continuing to consider himself self-taught, he built up asolid theoretical background, become fluent in the rules of musical composition, a particularly valuable know-how when it comes to establishing a dialogue with classically-trained musicians and transcribing the music of his orchestra.
Prompted by his passion for the style’s three-part rhythm, Labelle decided to move to La Réunion in 2011, as if out of an irrepressible need to come back home to his musical inspirations, but also his origins, in search of his identity in a world still steeped in the hangover of colonialism. It is on the Island, amid a vibrant patchwork of ethnicities and faiths, in the middle of the stifling flora, and bathed in the Indian Ocean’s varied musical heritage, that he would commit himself to composing full-time.
- Grand Prix UNAC 2020
- Prizewinner of “Prix Musiques de l’Océan Indien” 2015-2016
- “Best Artist Pop Rock Électro” and “Best Music Vidéo” at Les Voix de l’Océan Indien 2014
Soon available, thanks.