Lemaitre has spent the last decade alternating between touring the world and releasing music from his L.A. base. Frequently listed on the biggest radio channels, a favorite booking at festivals such as Coachella, Lollapalloza, Roskilde, and Reading & Leeds.
They started 2020 with what most saw as the best live show of the year. "Sirkus Lemaitre", brought artists such as Isah, Kjartan Lauritzen Anna of the North, and comedian Jonis Josef on the road in January before they were to crown the year with a concert in Oslo Spektrum in autumn 2020. It seemed that the projects and concerts would never end, before Lemaitre, like other artists, had the world turned upside down during the pandemic. The duo was in Norway for work and just didn't make it back to L. A before the borders closed.
Back in Norway, without most of their instruments and their studio in Silver Lake, they were forced to slow down.
"It's difficult to go from constantly being exposed to a constant stream of impulses, both on the road and in meetings with other artists, to suddenly experiencing the opposite - a complete standstill," says Ketil Jansen. "But we had probably never quite taken the time to stop and dare to look back a bit, and when the calendar was deleted overnight, so we could develop our sound in a standstill. At least we've never done that before," he laughs and says Lemaitre has always been on the move when it comes to sound.
"I will never say we needed a pandemic because it has destroyed more than it has done good, but to be a little 'stranded' in order to find the calm to complete an entire project, we probably needed that," says Ulrik Denizou Lund.
The first taste, "Trip Sitter", came in May and was followed up by "Sparrow" at the end of June, until the album release in November, there will be a number of new singles. "The new songs are a kind of love child of all the directions Lemaitre has taken over the years. We still push sounds towards the extremes and place at least as much prestige in unexpected transitions, but I think we have never felt such control over our soundscape as now. It felt like being back to when we made music without thinking about how it sounded or who was going to hear it... Because it felt like no one was going to hear it," says Ketil.
"But we're glad someone will hear it soon because it's probably a standstill now," concludes Ulrik.
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