He’s attracted international attention through his remix work (Les Georges Leningrad, Clipse, Lady Sovereign and more) and his albums for Chocolate Industries and Ninja Tune. But Ghislain Poirier imprinted himself on my Montréal music radar after I attended one of his legendary Bounce Le Gros nights, where his distinctive mix of hip-hop, dub, dancehall, baile funk and more collided. At the time, it was a mix of hip-swiveling dancefloor mayhem unlike anything I’d ever heard.
Fast-forward several years, and Ghislain has become one of Montréal’s dancefloor ambassadors, beloved at home and coveted by party people everywhere….
One of the reasons that Ghislain is such breath of fresh-air is that he’s a dance music collector and aficionado. Though the base of his music is hip hop and electronic music, he often leaves North America when pulling in musical influences: Brazil (baile funk), Jamaica (dancehall) and Trinidad-Tobago (soca), to name just a few. But he remains a proud Montrealer – who else would have a video with booty dancing at a hockey game?
I caught up with big Ghis over email (his Twitter is testament to how busy he is) to ask a couple quick questions about his eagerly anticipated show at Mutek.
BM: What effect has Montréal had on your music? GP: Montréal is a relaxed place to live with a quality of life, which allowed me to be in the perfect state-of-mind to create the music I like.
BM: Your three favourite places in Montréal? GP: Zoobizarre. The Old Port when there’s Igloofest. Mile-End.
BM: What can people expect from your upcoming Mutek set? GP: A furious and massive live set that has one goal: set the dancefloor on fire. It’s the soundclash of live drumming (Christian Olsen) and electronic beats with the incredible vocal guests Face-T and Boogat. Expect fast soca riddims, low end dancehall and all kind of crazy phat beats.
Ghislain Poirier plays May 29 at Metropolis, alongisde Chile’s Original Hamster, Brazil’s Nego Moçambique, Mexico’s Nortec Collective and fellow Montrealer Mike Shannon.
for his new video and much more, check Ghislain Poirier
Ghislain Poirier pic by Guillaume Simoneau