Cleverly delivering some high-energy afro-funk fusion influenced by Fela Kuti’s politicized afrobeat, Parliament’s clever groovy funk, James Brown’s passionate soul flavour, Bruno Mars’ bubbly pop sound and Jimi Hendrix’s rock intensity since their debut in 2006, Papagroove have activated their magic to many notorious stages: Festival international de jazz de Montréal, Calgary Folk Music Festival, Calgary International Blues Festival, Hornby Festival, SunFest, Festival international des rythmes du monde, Festival d’été de Québec, Festival de Jazz de Rimouski, Woodstock en Beauce, du Ottawa Jazz Fest (as an opening act for Medeski, Martin & Wood) Maximum Blues, Festif! (supporting Cat Empire), Global Groove… and the list goes on.
Known for their fiery stage presence, their mastery of improvisation and their explosive presence, the band returns with Les sabliers (‘Hourglasses’ in English), a new EP where they unassumingly reveal their ability to settle down and embrace fleeting moments in all their complexity. Exploring human existence through the prism of its inevitable ending, transformations and rebirths, Papagroove allow themselves to experience the paradox of time: living in the present while at the same time projecting themselves into the future.
After three albums over the course of their career, a GAMIQ win for “Album or EP of the Year – World Music” and a nomination at the ADISQ gala in the same category in 2018 for The Hunt album, Papagroove are now collectively entering an uncharted territory. While the song itself becomes central, the band also arises through a more introspective form. Singing about paradigms changing over time, recurrent societal failures and their inner child’s nostalgia, they convey their message at a deeper level. In a skilful mix of musical genres through which the nuanced sound of their French music springs, Papagroove never lose their essence; passion fiercely remains. Only this time, social topics and intimate thoughts come as one.
Composed of Sébastien Francisque (vocals), Sylvain Plante (drums), Gabriel Lajoie (bass), Guy Kaye (guitars), Mario Allard (alto saxophone), Jean-François Ouellet (baritone saxophone), Jacques Kuba Séguin (trumpet), Matthieu Van-Vliet (trombone) as well as François Therrien (keyboards), the band has picked its go-to weapon a long time ago. For Papagroove, music is and will remain the best and most subtle one of all.