French Psychedelic Quartet You Said Strange Worship The Self With “My Own God”

“You endowed me with a name,

you directed my faith,

you showed me the light,

but blinded me there’s nothing behind it…

Next time, I’ll believe in my own god!”

Originating from Normandy, France, psychedelic noise-pop quartet You Said Strange presents a unique blend of indie rock that incorporates elements of psych pop-rock, shoegaze, and proto-grunge. Hot on the heels of their latest visual release for the EP’s title track, the band unveils another slice from the project, a compelling track titled My Own God.

In a move that might make the indie rock purists do a double-take, the band has decided to throw caution to the wind and actually release a song that you can hum along to without a degree in existential philosophy. Their latest track dives headfirst into the murky waters of trust, emerging with a catchy tune that’s all about the sting of betrayal and the eye-roll-worthy letdowns from our so-called heroes. The rallying cry? “Let’s be our own God!” Because, honestly, who hasn’t been there?

With a melody that hooks you faster than a late-night infomercial and a beat that could make even the most rhythmically challenged consider dancing, the song is a masterclass in indie-rock earworms. Eliot’s vocals ride the dark wave like a surfer with a penchant for existential dread, delivering punchy lyrics with the kind of euphoria that makes you want to believe in something—preferably yourself. Adding a sprinkle of magic is a female voice that not only echoes Eliot’s sentiments but also steps into the spotlight towards the end, shining a beam of light and balancing the scales with a touch of feminine flair.

With My Own God, the band takes a leap into the metaphysical, pondering the age-old question: if the man upstairs is MIA, did we just draft him into existence to keep our societal ship from capsizing? And because they love to keep things interesting, they’re serving up this existential buffet with a side of visuals—a mockumentary-style video that smells distinctly of ’90s nostalgia, cheekily nodding to the dark humour of “C’est arrivé près de chez vous” and the quirky charm of The Lemon Twigs’ “I Wanna Prove to You.”

Five folks, each a walking cliché of various addictions, huddled in a therapy circle that feels more like a scene from a sitcom than a soul-searching session. As the video unfolds, it peels back the layers of these caricatures, delving into the tumultuous sea of their inner conflicts, all while keeping a straight face. It’s a tongue-in-cheek journey through the quest for personal meaning amidst the facade of control, making My Own God a whimsical ride through the chaos of existence. Because, in the end, aren’t we all just trying to direct our own mockumentaries?

Trade Your Soul  marks a significant milestone for the band, seeing them broaden their horizons with a more striking musical approach and a number of innovations. Even still, they continue to create the work of passionate musicians who combine dazzling instrumentation and the union of voices to fuse melancholy and energy alike.

The band recorded their first album, Salvation Prayer, in 2018 in Portland (USA), with Peter G. Holmstrom from The Dandy Warhols. In 2022, the band shared their LP Thousand Shadows Vol. 1. Mythomaniac kings, the Mediterranean, the colors of mourning — these are the detailed subjects, described against a backdrop of psychedelic pop, proto grunge, and shoegaze. The first part of a powerful, reverberant, melodious second album, drawing its inspiration and production stem from encounters during their 2022 European and North American tours, between Normandy, New York, and Oregon. Most recently, You Said Strange shared the second part of their sophomore release, a follow-up to Vol. 1 entitled Thousand Shadows Vol. 2.

The new EP is a post-rock tale unfolding as a metaphorical journey of spirituality through life’s most intense and intimate emotions and experiences — it demystifies the heroes and figures in whom we place our trust, covers themes of betrayal and disillusionment as key elements of the human journey, reflects on the use of faith and spirituality as metaphorical tools for apprehending human reality, raises profound questions about the creation of social frameworks in the absence of a concrete creator, and offers a quest for and discovery of true love.

The upcoming EP was the fruit of exciting collaborations with friends Marvin Borges-Soares(Structures), Raphaëlle Verlaine (Metro Verlaine), Joseph Baudet. Their contributions added a unique dimension to three of the tracks. This EP was also an opportunity to collaborate with engineers Arthur Guegan and Daniel James Goodwin. The project was additionally mixed and mastered by Daniel J. Goodwin.

Trade Your Soul is out March 29 via EXAG / Le Cèpe Records.

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Alice Teeple

Alice Teeple is a photographer, multidisciplinary artist, and writer. She is not in Tin Machine.

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