Hello Beautiful is the pseudonym used by Pretoria-based producer, Matthieu Auriacombe for his electronic project. Matthieu, who started out in the music industry as guitarist for Pity The Fool during his high school and college years, is also known for his role at bassist for Beach Party and Kidofdoom.
On the 9th of September he released his new EP, entitled Leftover Dreams. The EP comes after the release of his debut EP Supernova Love in 2013 and his self-titled debut album in 2014. His first single from the new EP also features Alastair Thomas, frontman of Shortstraw.
He is also known for his collaborations. Previous collaborations on his released work includes the likes of Laudo Liebenberg of aKING, Peach van Pletzen from Yesterday’s Pupil and Bittereinder, Harmony Boucher from Vuvuvultures, Andrew Davenport from aKing and Thieve and Nicholas Preen from Al Bairre.
I recently had a chat to Matthieu Auriacombe about Hello Beautiful, this is what he had to say:
If someone asked you to describe the “Leftover Dreams” EP, what would you say?
It’s still straight up synth driven music, 80’s & early 90’s inspired, with reasonably straightforward beats and spacey sound scape melodies of course, there are collaborations, but mostly instrumental songs. I’ve discovered a lot of new music (old & new) in the last year or so, that I really like and get inspiration from and have learned to play keyboard and other instruments better in the past year. I’m a producer, I write music for artists, so from the writing side of things I feel I have improved in that department. I’ve decided to do less collaborations for this EP in particular and keep it more instrumental. All in all, I didn’t want to leave any stones unturned on the EP, hence why it took me so long to get ‘Leftover Dreams’ done.
The EP was written over the last year or so. You can hear the inspiration from the 80’s and early 90’s with the variety of synths that were used and blended in with more ‘modern’ keyboards I generally like and it has a good balance of happy & dark songs.
I took the time to leave no stones unturned, well, in my capacity. Always too much fun making music that sounds great to your ears and hoping some other people will like and appreciate it as much as you do. There are two collaborations on the EP, ‘If You Love Me Back ft. Alastair Thomas’ from Shortstraw & ‘Structures ft. Jean-Louise Parker’ from Academie, extremely stoked about that.
To quote Alastair: “So the theme of ‘If You Love Me Back’ I guess would be love. I got out the shower one morning and my little pup was just diligently waiting there for me. The love a dog has for their human is astounding and it’s that amount of love that I want to feel for someone else (another human, at least. I love my dog that much already!) which is why, in the chorus, I refer to the person as my pup. The verses are more about how you can’t stop thinking about someone you’re in love with, just like in a horror movie, you want to look away but you can’t. You’re like a bad dream – you keep me up at night. It’s all love, man”
To quote Jean Louise Parker: “’Structures’ explores the shift in consciousness that is happening around the world. The ‘western man’ is becoming more aware of his surroundings and his impact on others. The lyrics explore the idea of moving forward even though it makes some feel uncomfortable”
They were both a real gem to work with, great artists working hard in the industry and all round lekker mense.
Mixed and mastered by my mentor/good friend Peach van Pletzen at Planet Awesome.
You have been named as one of the artists to perform at the A Place in The Sun festival in November, what can music fans expect from your set?
Super stoked to be a part of this festival, and it will be our first festival show too. We are gonna play some unreleased songs at ‘A Place In The Sun’, all round good vibes and a lekker time, don’t forget your dancing shoes.
Your first single features Alastair Thomas from Shortstraw, how would you describe this song to someone who has not heard it before?
It’s upbeat, synth driven, influenced by disco music, vibey and easy to dance to.
If you could colab with any SA Artist that you have not worked with before, who would that be and why?
Yannick Ilunga, better known by his stage name Petite Noir, big fan of his music and would be absolutely honoured to work with him on a track. I’ve met him a few times, super nice, down to earth guy, everytime we’ve had a converstation we ended up just talking about music, we like quite a bunch of the same artists so it would be epic to see what would happen in studio.
I’d like to thank Matthieu Auriacombe for this interview and I wish him all of the best with his future musical endeavors.
Have a listen to “If you love me back” below: