Arp Shares New Single “Le Palace”

Driving, hypnotic, dubby… Arp’s new single “Le Palace” could soundtrack a scene in a William Gibson novel; slightly seedy, looking up toward a neon-lit sky for some deliverance. Expanding upon the expansive symbiosis that characterized the first two singles from New Pleasures, “Le Palace” is a pulsing, futuristic, punky nightclub mix. Though named after the infamous Parisian “boîte au disco” (re: nightclub), “Le Palace” is not, in fact, a tribute to the club in question. 

Arp’s Alexis Georgopoulos explains, “The title was inspired by an interview I read with Edwige Belmore. Edwige was the singer in the French new wave group Mathematiques Modernes and also the door person at Le Palace during its heyday. Her description of the scene was so colorful, so vivid — I got excited reading about all these characters from the art, music, and fashion worlds rubbing shoulders. It felt like a time when stylistic collision was encouraged.”

“The title was really just supposed to be a working title. It wasn’t meant to be a tribute so much as wanting to write a song that might’ve fit the vibe — a bit post-punk, a bit nightclub, a bit dubby, something that had a charge to it. I suppose it has to do with crossing borders, socially speaking. A dance floor, a good party, pulls in all different kinds of people, people you might not share a space with otherwise. And then you add this music pulsing, hypnotizing, people look around and there’s a moment of recognition.  A feeling that anything might happen. A Temporary Autonomous Zone. That elusive feeling, a private experience between two people, in this public social space.  I wanted it to feel like a slow burn. The tempo suggests an early evening track, but the atmosphere might be more like 4AM.”

Drawing on the promise of futurism, New Pleasures reflects the slipperiness of time, the multidirectional, non-linearity of memory; how our minds shift millisecond to millisecond from past to present to future and back again. 

New Pleasures is the second chapter in Arp’s ZEBRA trilogy and advances the narrative begun with 2018’s acclaimed ZEBRA. Now, he drops us deep into the grid of the city. New Pleasures fast-forwards a few centuries, locating listeners in a post-industrial Sprawl (to borrow an expression from William Gibson’s Neuromancer) of concrete and glass, imbuing the album with the flinty glow of commerce, the sleek rhythms of industrialization, and the cool finesse of brutalism. 

In its dialogue of opposition, both theoretical and sensory—human/machine, meta/immediate, economic/erotic—New Pleasures gleans political ideologies and spiritual deficiencies from the polishes and veneers of our world. One wonders if those so-called ‘New Pleasures’ are in fact pleasures at all. Another meaning lurks, it seems, underneath the title’s ostensible advert-speak. By embracing overlapping methodologies, intersecting genealogies, and burgeoning technologies, New Pleasures offers the building blocks of something liberating rather than didactic. 

New Pleasures sees its release on vinyl and across digital platforms via Mexican Summer on July 15. To pre-order or pre-save, go here.

Photo Courtesy: Kelly Jeffrey