La Blogotheque operated first hand. In fact, I almost got ran over by a bicyclist (believe me they are aggressive) in Toronto while they filmed Neutral Uke Hotel at NXNE for one of their Take Away Shows. Based in Montreal and Paris, La Blogotheque is almost entirely in French, but that doesn't stop a solid English speaking base from following the blog. Because as La Blogotheque demonstrates by featuring bands like Land of Talk, Josh Ritter and Beach House, good music is good music no matter what side of the pond or border you are on.
I know this, je t'aime La Blogotheque. And I'm fairly certain I'll be listening to Bon Iver today.
La Blogotheque's own, Nora Bouazzouni, took some time out to answer a few questions for us.
GLG: How long has La Blogotheque been operating?
LB: It’s existed as an MP3 blog since 2002, and the Take Away Shows started in 2006.
GLG: What makes La Blogotheque different from other websites?
LB: We're not obsessed with talking about the latest hip bands, posting tracklists and gossips, reviewing every new record possible; we don't care much about that. We're not a news website. There are more or less a dozen people writing on La Blogothèque, and though we're all different and we don't necessarily like the same music, we all agree on one thing: we want to talk about music in a completely different way than other music blogs, we want it to be more personal, more about our feelings, about what it brings up. It's not about grading an album, track by track, it will never be. If one of us writes about a musician, or a song, whether it's something old or something new, it's because it means something to him or her.
GLG: Do you think la blogotheque has a specific musical niche?
LB: People would say we're more into folk and bearded guys playing guitar while singing sad songs, but it's only because of the Take Away Shows that we aquired this reputation! If you read the blog -it's in French- you'll see that we're quite eclectic. Right now, on La Blogo's home you can read about The Libertines, Haïtian music, listen to a Ninja Tune mixtape... I guess that tells it!
GLG:. What albums are you looking forward to coming out?
LB: Bon Iver's second album. He just announced it'll be released next year, I can't wait! Also, I'm a big Dodos' fan, and they just started recording the follow-up to Time To Die (which I didn't like ), and I really, really hope it's gonna be something as awesomely mind-blowing as Visiter. I hope there'll be a new Department of Eagles record soon.
And I was excited about Spoon's new album. It leaked so I listened to it, but I'm disappointed.
GLG: How does la blogotheque support independent music and what’s important about doing so?
LB: We support indie music with our Take Away Shows and Pocket Parties, and sometimes we even provide bands a place to stay when they're playing in Paris, but don't have enough money to book a hotel ;)
GLG: Do you think online publications are taking precedence over print magazine? What kind of effect do you think that has on bands?
LB: I don't think online publications are killing print magazines, I think they complete each other. Speaking for me, I never ever read music magazines. I don't know why, but it never attracted me. Maybe it has to do with my age. I'm 24, and I got my first computer with the Internet in 1999. That's when I started looking for new stuff to listen to. I don't like the way magazines talk about music, it's too distant, too « professional ». And now, if you read a magazine and want to listen to that new band they talk about, you have to drop the magazine, go to your computer, type the Myspace URL, and click on a song. With a music blog, you just click on Play and you're done. Digital natives are much more into the « instantaneous ». I think people will go to blogs to discover stuff, and then buy a magazine to read about that stuff they just listened to.
GLG: What blogs/magazines do you read other than your own?
LB: The only music blog I read is Said The Gramophone. All the others I just skim through and download the MP3s (and I don't like revealing my sources, sorry!). For acoustic sessions, KEXP and Daytrotter. For news, Pitchfork and Stereogum (how original).
GLG: What has been your most definitive moment since you started la blogotheque?
LB: Bon Iver's Pocket Party. Just watch it, you'll understand.
GLG: If you could interview any musician/band (dead or alive) who would it be?
LB: I don't do interviews, it's not my thing. And I don't have idols. But I would love to spend some time with Kurt Cobain, or Thom Yorke. Or Bertrand Cantat (singer of French rock band Noir Désir).
GLG: If you could be in any band (of all time), who would you rock with?
LB: Girls bands: Le Tigre, Hole, The Runaways. Other: The Beatles, Queen, Nirvana.
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