Kadebostany’s cosmopolitan and evocative EP “DRAMA- Act 1” released on April 3rd breaks new ground with a 20- minute music video directed by Hasan Kuyucu.
There has never been a time more suitable for long-form visual and acoustic art experiences, and yet such a feat contradicts the rules of the modern music industry. Rule-breaking “DRAMA- Act 1” strikes strong with sophisticated aesthetics, an international team, and genre-defying music all united under the Republic of Kadebostany.
The pioneering music video begins with “Baby I’m Ok” featuring the lead singer from the popular Ukrainian band KAZKA. A balladesque arpeggio in E minor sets the tone for the rest of the EP: a harmonic nostalgia for freedom, a melodic melancholy of longing, or “crying with a smile,” in Swiss producer Guillaume de Kadebostany’s own words. Instead of resolving to the dominant chord in the chorus of “Baby, I’m Ok”, Kadebostany surprises us with a V from the Aeolian mode, introducing a new constellation into the song’s universe. In terrestrial terms, you won’t know what hit you, and suddenly, you’re immersed.
After all, Guillaume de Kadebostany loves the element of surprise, both in his music and in the process of making it. A DJ set in Ibiza and a walk along the shore were enough to create the concept of “DRAMA- Act 1”, an EP influenced by theatre, opera, and surreal aesthetics. His previous album, “MONUMENTAL”, took years to make, but “DRAMA- Act 1” was created in three months of spontaneity. “I had a place on my computer where I wrote the names of people I wish I could work with. I thought maybe it’s the right moment to do it… Guillaume Boscaro [lyricist] came to my house and I opened the door and we’re like ‘hey we will be here for three days, we don’t know each other but lets see what we can do together’ and that was quite magical because there is this sensation of risk. Suddenly you have all these people you don’t know and now they’re part of your family,” says Guillaume de Kadebostany.
The “Baby I’m Ok” visual ends with a gloomy reflection of the KAZKA vocalist expressing the meaning of the song, in prose, and in her own language, a masterstroke each featured artist gets to do. “In the video, I purposefully chose to have all the artists speak in their native language,” comments Guillaume de Kadebostany, “people are different, but when they understand each other they can create something that is very powerful even if they don’t speak the same language. If there is one symbol I am very proud of, it is this one.”
The finale of “Baby I’m Ok” is simultaneously the introduction of “I wasn’t made for love” featuring the up and coming French rapper, Fang The Great. “I wasn’t made for love” starts with a solid pulse and reshuffles into a rhythmic embrace of insanity that will get you up off your chair. Note Kadebostany’s signature woodwind- like synth sneaking into the mix to create that special atmosphere. “It’s actually quite political,” says Guillaume de Kadebostany, “The idea was, what impact does your country have on you? What does it mean to say I’m French and do I owe anything to France if I’m French? Do I owe anything to America if I’m American?”
A romantic melody combined with pained lyrics constitutes “Letters from Her” performed by the Moldavian singer Irina Rimes. Just tell me does she wear the same sound as I do/ Just tell me does she sing the same song to you is followed by a purposefully detuned keyboard accompaniment, making “Letters from Her” a cleverly twisted ballad.
“For me, a video clip can be for the best of a song or it can be dangerous for a song, and I think this is the first time we really achieved the perfect combination between the song and the visual,” comments Guillaume de Kadebostany, “There is no story, but its very open to your own imagination, and I find that to be more powerful.” Nevertheless, Guillaume de Kadebostany seems to be a guiding force for his artists, in real life and in storytelling.
The last scene of the integrated music video is straight from Jodorowsky’s film “The Holy Mountain,” and pairs well with the vibrancy and uplifting nature of “Take it away from me,” the final song featuring the Italian newcomer Célia. In the chorus of “Take it away from me” we are exposed to another staple of the Kadebostany Republic: a catchy tune on the Hitzaz scale, often found in Greek, Turkish, and Arabic music. Kadebostany often experiments with exotic scales, making this a strong, trademarked finale.
“DRAMA- Act 1” is now available on all streaming services. Watch the music video.