Forêt de Vin – In conversation
Back in the summer of 2019 I was having a beer with some friends before a synthwave event. (There always tends to be beer…) We were chatting about not only those pioneer artists of the early 00s who paved the way but also that sweet period around 4 or 5 years ago where it seemed that every new release was an absolute gem. Timecop 1983’s ‘Reflections‘, Le Cassette’s ‘Left To Our Own Devices‘, Robert Parker’s ‘Crystal City‘. They all garnered great acclaim.
It’s no secret that when it comes to synthwave, I am more a fan of the lighter synthpop works than I am the darker side of the genre. With that in mind a friend came back with a round of drinks and said ‘What did you think of Forêt de Vin?’
Who? I asked. I’ll be honest in stating that before that conversation, I had never heard of the group who were soon to become one of my favourite in the scene.
‘Forêt de Vin! Those dudes are SERIOUSLY good’. He then proceeded to jump on YouTube and play me a selection of their tracks.
Who ARE these guys?! I asked.
Sam proceeded to explain that they were a largely secretive duo who haven’t really been seen in public. Great effort had been made to keep their identities hidden and, what was more apparent, their material isn’t available to buy.
Certainly thanks to NRW you can stream many of their tracks via YouTube, but the band don’t have a Bandcamp or any of their work on the usual streaming services. I was pretty blown away and spent the rest of 2019 looking for as much of their work as I could find.
Forêt de Vin represent for me, a group that were making the music for the pleasure of the process. And damn, their stuff is complete, quality and the very definition of 80s inspired electronic music that fills your heart with joy. When we talk of a time where every release in the scene was a banger, you simply have to include Forêt de Vin. So imagine my happiness when this talented duo agreed to an interview.
Grab a seat, and enjoy a one to one with Forêt de Vin.
So little is know about you guys. As far as I can understand you hail from Stockholm and make some serious 80s jams. Was that the plan? – To keep that mystery to the music?
Two guys. One of us is from a smaller town down south of Sweden and the other one is from Stockholm. We both work in the capital and that’s where we met. We didn’t really have a plan when we started out. Saw the Kung Fury trailer 2014 and thought it was the coolest thing ever and we wanted to do an 80s thing too. The mystery is a mystery because we want to release more music and stuff but since we’re so busy and have too little time available for Forêt de Vin we don’t really want to show our faces. The shame haha! When the time comes and we have more time, things will change for sure.
Last year the Patrick Fakeman blog considered ‘Another Dimension’ the synthwave track of the decade. How does that track sit with you all these years later? Are you still happy with it? Would you change it?
Thanks a lot! Love that jam. Still happy with it. Of course the mixing skills have improved a lot. Been working and mixing approximately 120 songs since that release – but just 3 Forêt tunes which still aren’t finished. Gotta work to make a living you know.. And yes, we do both work with music.
How do you feel about the synthwave scene in 2020? How does it differ from the earlier days?
It’s more spread out and recognised now I think. Fredrik Strage (music journalist) talked about synthwave on Swedish prime time television. He mentioned a lot of artists, for instance Robert Parker who is a dear friend of ours. The first time we met each other (Robert P) was on a private ”synth party”. We got an invitation from him saying ”you gotta come and play synths and drink champagne with us”. Had to go there. It was an epic night where we, Robert P, Waveshaper, Shy Guys, Bachelor of Hearts and Vince Riviera took the synth party to the next level.
Wow, that sounds like a crazy night! 2020 officially marks 40 years since the 80s enriched our lives. Why, 40 years on does this music still have so much pull for so many people?
That’s just crazy! 40 years. Gotta change our motto – “It’s supposed to sound like the songs the record company forgot to release 30 years ago.” We were born in the eighties and a lot of other synthwave artists as well, and it’s always something magical and mystical with the childhood. Everything back then felt like the future in a way. Video, games, cartoons – yeah you name it. Our parents, who were born in the 60s, can’t stop listening to their childhood music and as you know there’s a lot of dads who’s playing bass in a cover rock band or whatever. It’s just easier for our generation to make and release music on the internet today.
Can we expect more from Forêt du Vin in the future? That sound is so authentically 80s…
Oh yes, of course! We’re just swamped with ”real” work. So hard to find the time. Like I said, gotta make a living.. We do have a very nice thing going on, though. Can’t tell you more right now but it’s gonna be nice. Really nice. And 80s…
A huge thank you to the guys for taking the time to chat with me. Now you’ll need to excuse me, I have to return some videotapes.