I think this was the bands 8th album… They’d been around a long time & had proved themselves live as a great post punk band with the very charismatic Didier as the frontman.
When Marc Thonon from Atmospherique contacted me to ask if I would work with them, my mission was to try to get Didier to sing in tune!
We recorded the album in La Presse studios near Tours France, it was built into a cliff, a very strange place. After a couple of weeks recording I realized that we didn’t have a hit single, so I asked Didier to give me all his home demos whatever quality they were. He gave me about 60 songs! I remember staying up all night listening to them. After wading through all of them, I came across a song called “Manu Chao” which was a funny dig at Manu Chao who had had world wide success. But originally came from a punk band called “Mano Negra”.
The next morning I suggested we record it… The band weren’t amused, as none of them except Didier like it.
I went for a simple Ramones style guitar riff, which the very talented Phillippe resented playing as it was too simple for him & sounded too American. The Solo being a funny memory now. I was mixing the song & had 8 bars in the middle of it where nothing much was going on, so I asked Phillippe to do a solo, which he did in 1 take as a joke saying that it is “la merde”! I kept it & the rest is history. The single went on to be the bands biggest ever hit & the album went on to be Gold.
We mixed the album in an equally bizarre studio in Paris. It had been a German 2nd world war bunker, had a very strange vibe and of course no windows!
"Never Trust a Guy Who After Having Been a Punk, Is Now Playing Electro" has been certified "Gold" in France.