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The Micronauts is the leftfield techno and acid house project from Christophe Monier.
The summer of 2017 saw a 12” reissue of The Micronauts’ classic 1995 debut “Get Funky Get Down” which includes Daft Punk’s first ever remix, a pummeling, acid techno attack in the lineage of Emmanuel Top, rather than Chic. It was the then barely known duo, having heard the jacking 303 led original at a Parisian rave, who had asked Monier if they could remix the track.
The return of The Micronauts gives an opportunity to reflect on Monier’s massive influence in shaping this world changing scene. From running fanzine eDEN, recently the inspiration for a feature film of the same name, to putting out crazed acid hardware jams like “The Jazz”. Such activities winning him (and George Issakidis, partner in The Micronauts throughout the 90s) fans from The Chemical Brothers to Madonna who later requested The Micronauts remix treatment, Monier’s vision of Paris was harder and more out there than those of his contemporaries.
As one half of Discotique, alongside cult post-punk figure and DJ Patrick Vidal (who had been signed to New York’s seminal Celluloid and ZE Records as part of Marie Et Les Garçons), Monier put out the debut record on Rave Age Records, a label founded in 1990 by organisers of the first raves in Paris.
Monier’s main inspiration was always acid house, like in the pitch shifting madness of “Rock That House Musiq” under another of his monikers, Impulsion, featuring in seminal British clubbing film “It’s All Gone Pete Tong”. The Micronauts could do disco too, twisting up Inner Life and Joyce Sims on “The Jag”, but as director Gregg Araki’s infamous video captured, it was in a druggier, sexier and more explicitly queerish way than anybody else out there.
Monier’s label Micronautics originally launched in 2004 with The Micronauts “Anarchie” EP, which included Dave Clarke and John Peel favourite “High Rise”, an epic techno trip of increasing intensity, but also went on to provide a home for Rituel, a deeper, more garage house based project with Thomas Regnault.
Monier played a pivotal role in the musical legacy of Paris, amassing coverage with everyone from Interview to i-D, Pitchfork to Muzik, NME to The Face, but has never been one to look to the past simply. The Micronauts future will build on this history, but without repeating what has gone before. What is sure is that it will sound as distinctive and uncompromising as ever, taking the name to a new generation who are living in a world shaped by their original trailblazing sound.