TF Archives

France's David Caretta on America, Electroclash & (DJ) Hell

Author: Camilo Rocha and Claudia Assef
Wednesday, July 9, 2003
Ever since signing to Sven Vath's mighty Harthouse label in 1994, David Caretta has been appreciated by those in the know, which is just one reason why DJ Hell launched his entire Gigolo Records stable, after signing making the French electronic auteur his first label in 1998. Loosely centred in techno, Caretta was one of the first producers to introduce 80s elements into his work, laying several key foundations for what later became known as electroclash. Chatting to Skrufff's man-in-Brazil Camilo Rocha and his colleague Claudia Assef after a successful date in Sao Paulo, the Marseilles based producer admitted he's still inspired by the decade.

"Of course the 80s are still a great influence on my work. It is my music, I love this style and I'm trying to help it have a longer life," said David.

"Because after electroclash, what comes next- Will everything become like it was before- Will I go out of fashion-"

With Hell's support and recent releases including his brilliant Le Catalogue Electronique and singles such as 2001's Domination EP already in the bag, his future, in fact, looks even brighter.

Skrufff: Have you had any problems because of the tension between France and US since Iraq-

David Caretta: "I don't play much in the US, in fact I've only played there once, in Chicago and before the war. And I can tell you that the gig was excellent. And No, I haven't felt any wrong vibes due to the fact that I'm French. But maybe the situation would have been different if I had played there after the war, who knows".

Skrufff: Has the war changed your feelings against the US-

David Caretta: "A little, but I don't want to generalize and I don't want to think that all Americans are stupid. A proof of this is that a lot of people from the cultural arena have spoken out strongly against the war and in favour of the French government's position. But the truth is that the US seem to act like a wilful, stubborn child, with an attitude that says 'you did this to me, so take that'. I hope everything is sorted out but the US government has in reality managed to do exactly what it wanted to do."

Skrufff: Is it true that your recent EP Domination was inspired by an anti-US sentiment-

David Caretta: "The track Punishment Song effectively speaks about this matter specifically, it's about a prison camp the Americans built to putdeserters and people who refused to go to the Vietnam War in. History repeats itself, but fortunately today they no longer have the rights to do exactly what they did in the 1960s."

Skrufff: How do you see the whole electroclash phenomenon-

David Caretta: "I don't exactly detest it but I don't feel part of it. In the beginning, I deliberately would record tracks with an eighties feel, more because I wanted to mark out my own territory; to be different than other DJs and producers. I love the idea of being part of a movement that is out of the ordinary, that isn't accessible to the majority, with ideas that differ from what most people think. Not that I want everyone to be different but I think it is cool that people don't all listen to the same music as I do."

Skrufff: How did you and DJ Hell become friends-

David Caretta: "We met during a tour that was organized by a common friend, Laurent Michelli, who put on some events and always invited me to play when I was just starting. I owe a lot to this guy, especially because it was through him that I met Hell. Then Hell really liked my sound and asked me for some tracks for the label that he was starting. And I believe that is still how he works, going after new people, whose work hasn't been discovered."