Woodkid and the S16

For a long time the Frenchman Yoann Lemoine was known only to a narrow circle of music lovers. Ten years ago, he started out as a music video maker. At some point, Lemoine became uninteresting to remain behind the scenes. He decided to combine all his skills and talents in a new project – Woodkid.

Woodkid’s first full-length album made a splash in 2014. The compositions gained popularity all over the world and became soundtracks for many films (for example, “Run Boy Run” became the main theme of the series “Umbrella Academy” on Netflix). Having rolled back a tour in support of the album, Yoann stated that he does not owe anyone anything else and does not know if he will write a new album. And he was gone.

A kind of comeback occured thanks to the creative director of the House of Louis Vuitton Nicolas Ghesquière. Woodkid is a close friend of Ghesquière, and since 2017, Yoann has unofficially served as the House’s music director. A massive return to music began in 2018, when Woodkid made a soundtrack for the show of Ghesquière spring-summer 2019, which was even released as a separate album Woodkid For Nicolas Ghesquière — Louise Viutton Works One.

S16 is a new Woodkid album that surprisingly resonates with the anxious mood of a pandemic-ridden world. Announcing S16, Yoann was the first to present the video for the song Goliath – a post-apocalyptic, industrial plot that reflects the process of birth from coal and flame of a huge creature, Goliath. In fact, if you read the lyrics, you will see that all songs are about love. On the new album, Woodkid uses much fewer wind instruments and more strings. It is less sweeping, more minimalistic and intimate. The second layer of the plate is permeated along and across by industrial motives. To create the sound background in the song “Pale Yellow”, Yoann specially traveled to the Museum of Science and Technology and recorded the grinding of robots.

Despite the layering of contexts, S16 remains a deeply personal work about getting out of depression. Woodkid says, “There are important lines in the song “Horizons Into Battlegrounds” where I say we’re calling too late for help. We don’t take care of ourselves as long as all is well. I think this idea might resonate with a lot of people.”

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