The word Ptôse is a medical term used to define a prolaps of the abdominal organs, due to a relaxation of the diaphragm and of the thoracic and abdominal muscles. Normally the word is tied to the notion of fall, subsidence and laxity.
Ptôse (Production) was founded in 1980 during winter hollidays by two brothers Benoit and Lionel. They just started recording a cassette using two tape recorders, musical toys, old instruments and various objects.
The cassette was " Boule (viens ici!)". This cassette was given to friends as a new year gift...Since P.P. received many encouragements (even from The Residents) they decided to keep up their musical activities and to create an indipendent cassette company "Ptôse Production Présente".
P.P.P. started releasing only Ptôse Production recordings, but as the band became more popular some other musicians began to partecipate to the studio sessions (Erika Irganon,ZZe...).
So P.P.P.began to release compilation tapes : the "Assemblee Generale" series which featured bands and individuals from all over the world.
During the recordings of their third tape "Seigneur des mouches" the band was contacted by Jean Pierre Turmel (Sordide Sentimental) who requested their partecipation to his magazine "Isolation Intellectuelle". The included single was produced by John Jean Cabanis who was working at the time with Erika Irganon. 1100 copies were printed in 1981.With John Jean they also published a mini-LP including new mixes of the first tape tracks. The cover was hand printed and 101 copies were sold. A few months later P.P.P. released "Hand made electronics" which was a success abroad along with it's follow-up "Apparaitre/a paraitre". Then the band started to work on "Moxisylite N" a cassette in a special case looking just like a pill box.....
This tape was very appreciated in Japan and a lot of contacts were established with local musicians like Geso, Omnyck,Kennichi Takeda). With their help P.P. released the compilation "Random Choice" through Pinakotheca Records..and partecipated to "Infecund Infection" a Compilation Lp also released by Pinakotheca Records.
What do you think about progressive music in France?
We think that "progressive music" in France is alive and well living, although most of French critics and even the public ignore it! But probably it's because we are shy and we don't want to attract attention!
Anyway people like Déficit Des Années Antérieures , Bain Total, Un Départment or P.P.P. should associate themselves to be more efficient or active.. That's why we have met DDAA and Bain Total sometimes ago talking about this type of collaboration and they were very interested. So I think we will work together in the next future.....
Is Home-made music important for you?
All our works (except the more recent ones like "Poisson soluble") are home-made recordings. Working at home is easier for people not knowing much about music theories and techniques. Working at home allows us to spend all the time we need to, and also to work at random. As I told you "Poisson soluble" was recorded in an eight-track studio and it sounds much different. So we will return to work at home and we will go to the studio only to record the final version. It's better! Because the time it normally takes is a way to improve the final result.
How did you start to make "Assemblée Generale"?
We begun to publish A.G. because lots of bands were sending us cassettes of their music to be edited and obviously we didn't have the financial capacity to do it....
But considering that some were very interesting we decided to do a yearly international compilation called "Assemblée Generale". So we asked to the bands to contribute with a track and to buy some copies at cost price.In exchange we distribute the compilation (including their address) through our world extended network. A.G. is a good way to put in contact isolated bands or individuals, it's a sort of panorama of the alternative international scene (not exhaustive off course!)
Do you like to play concerts?
We like to play in front of an audience, but what we don't like is to organize the concerts ourselves....So we only play live when friends or organisations propose us to do it in good conditions.
Anyway we think that concerts are a good way to let people know about our music.
What you feel about being brothers doing the same kind of music?
Being brothers allows a great complicity. We can improvise together with much more unity and higher feeling considering that we are very close from a musical point of view.
What do you think about the Residents?
Well.... Heem...You surely have guessed that they are one of our major influences.. But this more through their humour than through their music or their image.
Why dou you produce your music yourself?
This in order to get the technical and financial control of what we like to do without any external intermission.
Do you play live very often?
Not very often,but since a few months we are playing more than ever....And now we are ready to play abroad (in good technical conditions off course!). So if you know someone who would like to organize one or more performances just tell them to contact us!
Who were your Japanese contacts?
We have very good contacts with Japanese musicians, expecially through the labels 5th Column and Pinakhoteca Records who collect the most open minded Japanese musicians.All our tapes are greatly appreciated and we are collaborating through mail with musicias like Onnyk (Ice 9) or Geso (5th Column) who really do intersting things.
Who are your musical favourites?
Lionel: Residents, Nino Rota, Colin Newman, Ghedalia Tazartes, Throbbing Gristle, Pere Ubu, DDAA, Phew......
Benoit: Jonathan Richman, The Modern Lovers, Tom Tom Club, Talking Heads, Lizzy Mercier Desclouds, Television, Ohio Express....
ZZe: Charle Trenet, Snakefinger, Maurice Chevalier, Bobby Lapointe, Kas Product.....
Which kind of music do you prefer?
Lionel: I like very much classical music , the earliest blues and jazz recordings and ethnical music but I don't have enough time to listen to it.I don't like disco music because excepting some sound researches it has nothing interesting.
Benoit: I like classical, jazz and some funky stuff.
ZZe: I like old fashioned "Chanteurs de charme".I mean French crooners like Maurice Chevalier.
What do you think about alternative music?
We think that there is not an real unity in alternative music scene, only some relations between some musicians.But we don't think the world "alternative" is the right one. There isn't a real choice to do, you can listen or play both "commercial and alternative" without any contradiction.
Do you feel excluded from the musical scene not living in a big town?
Not at all! On the contrary, being far from big cities we are not under any kind of pressure, and the influence of the media is very weak.The only problem comes from the technical part of our job (studios,distribution etc....)
In reality do you take music as a game?
Yes! you've guessed right! First of all music is a play and a game. I suppose it's obvious when you listen to our music.....
What do you think about industrial music?
We like T.G. and few other industrial bands, but too much people is the same thing in this area.We think that industrial bands that are really interesting are the ones who can play live and compose with the public.An action, a relation with the audience is necessary for this kind of music.....Most of the recordings are less impressive than a good live performance (this even concerning T.G.)
And what about old French progressive bands?
We don't know very much about old progressive French bands, and we don't like very much what we know.They are too much in musical virtuosity, nothing to do with our philosophy.
Why did you choose to make cassettes instead of records?
Cassettes are only for limited audiences.....nearly friends.With records you touch a larger public.But records need a special organisation (distribution etc.....), so you should better use the service of professionals...We are not ready for this at the moment.Anyway a major company has proposed us to make a record in a few months.. but we have not taken a decision yet. Let's see...
Do you earn some money from your music?
We are amateurs!We don't earn any money from our music neither with P.P.P. cassettes. We have other activities.
Who would you like to have in your band?
Not any musician in particular, but some of our favourite singers as David Thomas, Mona Soyoc or Phew... Anyhow not Eno!
Do you like interviews?
We are rather wild and shy, so... We don't like questions!