12 Songs, 45 Minutes

EDITORS’ NOTES

Jean-Baptiste de Laubier has come a long way since working with French rap group TTC. As Para One, the southern Parisian producer takes on many different styles while retaining a soulful thread of electronic music that recalls his undying love for indie hip-hop. Following a dark, Eno-inspired, synth-laden intro aptly titled “Ice Cold,” his 2012 album Passion breaks the ice with “Wake Me Up.” Here the tone is set with a kitchen-sink collage of sounds that plays like MC Solaar doing his thing over a groovier version of The Art of Noise. Para One’s friends Irfane and Teki Latex lend their sultry vocals to the outstanding “Every Little Thing,” a summery slice of future soul infused with neon-splashed R&B; it could have been teleported from the early '80s. Toward the album's end, Latex returns to sing through a Daft Punk–esque Vocoder on “Lean on Me,” a bass-heavy jam boasting some of the baggiest beats since early-'90s Madchester. Speaking of impressive beats, “The Talking Drums” makes good on its name with nearly melodic rhythms.

EDITORS’ NOTES

Jean-Baptiste de Laubier has come a long way since working with French rap group TTC. As Para One, the southern Parisian producer takes on many different styles while retaining a soulful thread of electronic music that recalls his undying love for indie hip-hop. Following a dark, Eno-inspired, synth-laden intro aptly titled “Ice Cold,” his 2012 album Passion breaks the ice with “Wake Me Up.” Here the tone is set with a kitchen-sink collage of sounds that plays like MC Solaar doing his thing over a groovier version of The Art of Noise. Para One’s friends Irfane and Teki Latex lend their sultry vocals to the outstanding “Every Little Thing,” a summery slice of future soul infused with neon-splashed R&B; it could have been teleported from the early '80s. Toward the album's end, Latex returns to sing through a Daft Punk–esque Vocoder on “Lean on Me,” a bass-heavy jam boasting some of the baggiest beats since early-'90s Madchester. Speaking of impressive beats, “The Talking Drums” makes good on its name with nearly melodic rhythms.

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1:47
3:17
4:09
5:31
4:18
3:32
2:46
3:57
4:20
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3:26

About Para One

Perhaps best known for his affiliation with the popular French rap group TTC, Para One is an alias of French electro producer Jean-Baptiste de Laubier, whose musical style is deeply rooted in golden-age hip-hop. Born in 1979 in Orleans, France, de Laubier first grew passionate about hip-hop after hearing Public Enemy, N.W.A, and the Native Tongues during the late '80s. He joined his first hip-hop group in 1993 but didn't break into the industry as a producer until 2000, when his productions began showing up on mixtapes. Around this same time he became affiliated with TTC and collaborated with them on their debut album, Ceci N'est Pas un Disque (2002), on Big Dada Recordings. De Laubier made his solo debut as Para One in 2003 on the label Institubes with the Beat Down EP, featuring TTC on the title track. He continued collaborating with TTC, producing much of their second album, Bâtards Sensibles (2004), which spawned the hit single "Dans le Club" and proved to be their commercial breakthrough, released by Big Dada Recordings in partnership with V2 Music France. Meanwhile, de Laubier continued his solo career, releasing the EP Clubhoppn (2005) and the full-length album Epiphanie (2006) on Institubes, the latter release spawning the hit single "Dudun-Dun," which was prominently remixed by MSTRKRFT and Boys Noize. Besides his own productions, he began fielding high-profile remix requests (e.g., Daft Punk's "The Prime Time of Your Life," Ellen Allien's "Down") and collaborated with TTC on their third album, 3615 (2006); moreover, his 2003-2005 collaboration with fellow TTC collaborator Tacteel -- a co-founder of Institubes and a hip-hop/electro producer in his own right -- on the live performance project FuckALoop resulted in the lengthy digital-only retrospective release The Early Aughties (2007). De Laubier also dabbled in the world of film, producing the Naissance des Pieuvres soundtrack, released by Institubes in 2007. ~ Jason Birchmeier

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