Canadian duo Chromeo, who released their fourth official studio album earlier this year (titled White Women), have released a mini documentary which chronicles the behind the scenes process that they went through when making the album. The group members David Macklovitch (Dave 1) and Patrick Gemayel (P-Thugg) met nearly 20 years ago in high school and have been making music together ever since. Their first official album was released in 2004. Although they have toured worldwide, written and produced music for a variety of artists, released several mix albums, released an EP, released a number of singles, and released 3 studio albums prior to White Women, it was only until the aforementioned album was released that the group’s star really rose. White Women is their most commercially successful album to date as it managed to chart in several countries including Canada, the USA, Australia, Belgium, France, Ireland, the UK, and Switzerland. The album has also received mostly positive reviews and is widely considered the group’s best so far.
The mini documentary goes as far back as 2012 in Brooklyn, New York to show the duo putting together the first pieces of the album. It’s definitely entertaining to watch the duo as they play around with melodies, sing along to the songs they’re working on, and discussing how they came together and how they’ve evolved over the years. There’s definitely a chemistry between the two of them that is really evident in the way they interact with one another.
White Women is the first album for the duo which involved other producers and songwriters. On bringing in outside help Dave 1 says “on this record we wanted to give our sound kind of an extra sheath”. They worked with a duo called Oliver who ended up co-producing the majority of the songs on the album. We’re taken to Pulse Recording Studios in Los Angeles where we see the 2 duos collaborating on some records. On a side note, prepare to see a lot of guitars and electronic keyboards and synthesizers in this video.
Well-known songwriter/producer Justin Meldal-Johnsen also appears in the documentary where he’s seen working with Chromeo on the song Lost On The Way Home which features Solange Knowles, sister to pop megastar Beyonce Knowles. Tawatha Agee is also seen working on a couple of songs with the group. Even award-winning producer Rob Mounsey, who has worked with many top artists including Paul Simon, makes a cameo appearance in the 10 minute long mini documentary.
Towards the end of the video they make a list of all the songs that they prepared for the album and they joke that they had to split the list of songs into either a beef song or a song about flirting. Dave 1 jokingly says that “basically every Chromeo song is either a beef song or a flirt song.” To cap off the video Dave 1 talks about what the group’s ultimate aspiration is; “if you look at the legacy of New York bands from The Ramones, Blondie, The Strokes, and then Vampire Weekend where the total package is there, the presentation is there, the appearance is there, the sheen is there, it’s inspirational. It’s stimulating and that’s what we aspire to be, kind of like one of those total package bands where you can say ‘oh my god this sounds like Chromeo.'”
It’s always interesting to watch an artist evolve on the screen or see how the songs we love came into being, from the initial simple melodies to a full-blown musical masterpiece. This documentary, though short, provides us with exactly that, and most Chromeo fans should enjoy this thoroughly. You can watch the video below – Let us know what you think of the documentary as well as the album in general.