Mixmag: So, Pet Shop Boys or Depeche Mode?
Xavier: Neither of them. We know one or two songs of each band but right now I’m unable to think of one or sing it.
Gaspard: I’d go for Depeche Mode.
Mixmag: Last time we spoke, five years ago, you said you didn’t listen to contemporary music. Is that still true?
Xavier: We’re not hermetic. Maybe we said that because that period was not as rich in new music. Making the last album we were listening to Led Zeppelin and ELO, but the dynamic then was different. That album was more like a small encyclopaedia of music we wanted to inject into our own music, but on this new record everything is spontaneous. Right now there are new things we like. I’m listening a lot to Miguel’s ‘The Valley’ which sounds like Nine Inch Nails. It has a grunge 90s sensibility.
Mixmag: Scarlett Johansson or 1960s Brigitte Bardot?
Xavier: Scarlett Johansson, definitely.
Gaspard: I have a lot of respect for Brigitte Bardot because she didn’t indulge in facial surgery or this awful dream of eternal youth. It’s kind of cool she just aged the way she did.
Xavier: Every woman and every man should age that way. Our music is the same. It sounds like us as we made it. We’re not trying to make youth music and it would be ridiculous if we tried to be the new club sensation.
Gaspard: We’re not running after what’s fresh, new and hip. You’re always too late if you do that.
Mixmag: You mentioned ELO earlier. We saw Jeff Lynne’s ELO play Glastonbury. He had the charisma of a lettuce.
Xavier: That’s always been the case, but, at the same time, the guy’s really good. We watched a documentary about him recently and we really want to hang out with him. OK, he’s not Mick Jagger, he’s this studio wizard, but you can’t ask him to be both.
Gaspard: The thing is, we love the way he writes songs.
Xavier: He’s funny and witty when you hear him talking. He’s not so much a performer, he’s a producer, he’s the archetype, and there are not many that good – even today. His new album ‘Alone In The Universe’ shows that he can still do it.
Mixmag: Have you ever been in awe of anyone you’ve been introduced to?
Both: Rick Rubin was great!
Xavier: In 2008 we were in Los Angeles. We used to know Diplo’s manager and he told us, “Rick Rubin would like to meet you,” so we went round his house. It’s not that we were star-struck, more that we were impressed. Of course, when you know everything he’s made, it’s hard not to be. He was so up-to-date and curious. It felt like we were talking to a guy from our generation.