More about me
Maxence, 26 years old, is born a year after Kurt Cobain’s death. He is from Nîmes, France. If life hadn’t made him an artist, he would’ve been a teacher. “French teacher abroad or English teacher in France” he specifies. He likes to make people laugh. Cry too. As a child, he dreamed of becoming a comedian. White clown. Capture the other, seduce him and take him away from a leaden reality. At the age 5, two planes crashed into the New York towers. He sees the world wavering live. A moment of silence in the school playground. Barely over, his classmates went back to playing, shouting, the youthful excitement. He didn’t. The sadness was still there, palpable, real. It’s in times like this that you can sense a difference in people. A gap at least. Maxence is sensitive. Hypersensitive. He had yet to find out that that’s what would feed his music. It offers him an identity made of poetry, derision, fragility. He wears a necklace with the letter B.o.n.h.e.u.r (happiness), “It’s a way of remembering it exists”, he says with a smile.
Young, the music he hears is what his parents listen to. His mum listens more to French music. His older brother, on the other hand, when he’s not turning the volume up to 11 in his room for Nirvana or Linkin Park, plays the guitar. Maxence follows. And so does the saxophone and the drums. Music, for him, is a “nice way to express yourself”. Inside, many things collide. They have to come out. Materialize. Music is therapeutic. In high school, he sang a cover of I Will Survive version Cake. A switch flicked. A first stone. As a teenager, he and his friends set up a neo metal group, Fysh, himself, the fan of Deftones and the singer Chino Moreno. A few local concerts, a self-produced record. It was there, he felt it, he knew it. He also participated in acting classes. Same feeling. He was in his place.
Time passes and he finds himself in Paris with Sofyan, another friend. 2016. He has the idea and the desire to make little songs “a bit funny but not parody“. First attempt and first buzz. Millions of views on YouTube. Word of mouth is working at full speed. This first song reveals a jubilant gap between frontal lyrics and almost soft music. The era is lazy, it immediately classifies it in the category of influencers. It’s almost a strange term, in any case too reductive for him and his creations. Where some only want to be these 2.0 sandwich men in a hurry, grabbing a celebrity built on sticky sand, Maxence does not want to become anyone by doing anything. Quite the contrary. Accompanied by Martin, the former bassist of Fysh, who takes care of the sound, Maxence learns on the job, in an uninhibited and frankly playful DIY spirit. His songs, including some offbeat covers (his latest, from Coldplay, had more than 200,000 views in less than 24 hours!), now have an audience, virtual but exponential (1.3 million followers on Instagram at this time). He crosses paths with his friends from Nîmes VSO, an EP was then born, and a tour. He collaborates on the show Crac Crac with Octopus. The pace quickens. He does not forbid himself from anything as long as he can express himself freely. He may still find it difficult to admit to himself that he is an artist, but he is nothing else.
His songs always reveal the ability to mix feelings. He sometimes sings with a smirk but in “Dimanche” for example, he also evokes his missing grandmother, the sometimes deadly boredom in the provinces. Maxence is well aware: life is an intoxicating waltz where laughter and tears, positivity and negativity, swirl constantly. 2019: he releases an EP, mixed by Martin and with the help of two producers, Waxx and C.Cole. He finally signed with 3ème Bureau. On the road again. Bigflo & Oli offered to open for them at six Zéniths. One evening, in front of 15,000 people, there was power cut. Maxence was alone facing the crowd. He improvised a few jokes, the public asked for more. An unforgettable and instructive experience.
A certain global virus then slowed down its course. Confinement. Another temporality. The time for his first album had come. Surrounded by Léo Faubert, Clément Libes (ex Kid Wise) and Léo Bouloumié, Maxence worked on his songs in Toulouse.
“Tout est trop Beau” , released November 26, 2021. 13 songs. A whole existence. An album about love, whether nascent or in mourning, vibrant or terrible, anecdotal or forever. An album again on hypersensitivity, on his relationship to the world and therefore to others, on mourning with “The Même Chagrin”, that deals with the loss of a child, this insurmountable lack, sublime approach, all in restraint, star modesty. If his EP had a certain trap, hip hop and rather dark spirit, this disc reveals a light, a desire to overcome the undeniable darkness. The title song “Tout est trop beau”, a sort of mini odyssey that ends in apotheosis and closes the disc, is an anthem to life, Maxence sings that you have to believe in it, despite the hard knocks. Open your eyes and see. Raise your head and take a step towards the horizon. This is what a child does. Capable of summoning poetry to everyday life without ever worrying about the judgment of others. The desire to marvel, at all costs, to display an eccentricity without overthinking. And if Maxence is an influencer, it is above all in his ability to push those who follow him to take responsibility, to get started, to shake up doubt. This is his watchword. He knows that songs have the power to change destiny.
There’s another element in his music that you can’t overlook: the nostalgia. The nostalgia is strong. His memory is made up of emotions, he remembers as if it were yesterday, he associates past moments with colours, a painter without a net. Relives what has been. What he was. Which will never be again. “Poids-Lourd” evokes the brutal shock of breaking up. It’s a beautiful song, racy and untamed. A harsh stroke. Black velvet. “Parfum d’Été”, his first single, is about a summer love. A beating heart, strongly.
Maxence’s music? It’s pop with multiple influences, the pop of today without labels, uninhibited. Hip hop, rock, electro, he crosses genres. He does not need to choose because he has found himself. It is paradoxical music, full of candor and austerity, derision and violence, melancholy and sunshine.
And it should be noted, on this album, Maxenss (re)became Maxence. He no longer hides. He is himself. The masks fall and he can finally exist. He is ready. Very ready. On the cover, we see him in a pink suit too big for him, a bouquet of flowers in his hand, an aggressive car about to roll in a puddle of water that will splash him. A frozen disaster. Sad clown. A character from a cartoon where laughter doesn’t say everything. And where, once again, joy and sadness walk hand in hand.
The release of the album was accompanied by a mini-series on YouTube, an imaginary and absurd documentary on the conception of the disc. Maxence is also an actor, he has already played in series and for TV movies on France 2. The following vvvvvvvvvv will be on stage, with the faithful Martin in duet or with his group, the same as in high school. This is also Maxence, a visceral loyalty. The desire not to change anything. He likes to say that he is a troubadour 2.0. He is right. He can even get rid of the 2.0. His songs are timeless, they sing the emotions that have always made humanity. Maxence is a tightrope walker. An ambassador of the abundance of feelings. Like a Baxter Dury, he embodies a certain beauty, the type that cannot be sold off, the type that tears the veil of the inevitable.
Everything is too beautiful, yes, for those who look the world straight in the eye.