The Toxic Avenger

The Toxic Avenger


Ultra Records, LLC


Simon Delacroix


Simon Delacroix

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Toxic Avenger comes across as something of a paradox at first. An introvert capable of extremes. An electro producer who only listens to pop. An independent thinker with an addictive personality. Simon Delacroix (as he's known on the street) is a mass of contradictions, providing fertile ground for excess. At his own admission, his long-term plans are ambitious, but at least they're clear: "My goal is to make music that appeals as much to ordinary people as it does to those with more hip credentials." Not that he particularly wants to give hip credentials to the mainstream, or to make the avant-garde more accessible: what he wants is to combine all the influences that are most important to him, however much they run counter to one another.

Obviously, the key to getting this combination right is living a life where difference and plenitude are one and the same. Raised in Mitterrand's France 1 by journalist parents in the offices of Libération 2, he was taught the virtues of cultural diversity at an early age. In his teens, despite being a hardcore metal enthusiast, he fell in love with an avid club-goer. Always willing to try something new, Simon started to get into electronic music, discovering the world of Respect parties, Pulp3, and a freer, more personal way of making music. One day, he uploaded a few electro tracks to the Internet. Three weeks later, high-profile American record label Iheartcomix took him under its wing. The next chapter of this young Parisian's story would play out in L.A.

At 23, Simon became Toxic Avenger and made his way to the States. He got to know America as he already did Europe.

With the release of his first album, he crisscrossed the States over the course of three lengthy tours. Toughened up a little. Hung out in dive bars, popular clubs, big festivals and jam-packed baseball stadiums alike. He was anointed by Rolling Stone, he experimented with excess, and he realized his potential as a live performer. Toxic Avenger made a name for himself and returned to France, armed with new savoir-faire.

In 2008, he signed with Roy Music and released his album 'Angst', which in German (as well as English) refers to a feeling that combines both anger and fear: ambiguity upon ambiguity, as always.

One of the tracks, "Angst#2" (which was a success with both critics and the public at large), was chosen as the background to a Nissan ad in 2012. As far as this album is concerned, he "think[s] Toxic followers were really expecting something totally wild, club-ready, but I couldn't make the style work in a longer format. Seventy minutes of drum beats would be fucking boring. So yeah, a lot of people were surprised. I think that people are starting to get it now."

In 2013, Toxic Avenger started to play with the idea of temporality in his music, paving the way for 'Romance and Cigarettes', an album that explores nostalgia and modernity. This search for lost time underscores a common thread to all his work: "There are always two sides to what I do: one dance-floor, one pure pop. When it comes to the latter, everything's very clear in my mind... If there's anything in my life I'd want to remember, it's the music that I listened to as a kid with my dad in the car when we went away on holiday. That's the exact feeling I'm looking for when I make music." So it's not surprising that the album is mixture of electro and 80's radio pop, combining the sounds of days gone by with more contemporary ones.

'Romance and Cigarettes' is perhaps Toxic Avenger's most ambitious work of synthesis yet, in that it's a synthesis of his own generation itself.

Like his peers, who used Minitel and got hooked on Twitter, who grew up with francs and now count in euros, which spun vinyl but now only listen to Mp3's, Toxic Avenger brings together all the contradictions of his time, whose creative potential can only be realized with a firm footing in both the past and the present. He belongs to a generation that comes across as something of a paradox at first, that combines contradictions as a way of getting as much out of them as possible. 'Romance and Cigarettes' is the embodiment of this generation, forever engaged in aesthetic play.
view all 25 tracks 25 tracks found
The Toxic Avenger "Chase II (Aucan Remix)"
Album: Chase II
Genres: Dance, Electronic, Electronica
The Toxic Avenger "Chase I"
Album: Romance & Cigarettes
Genres: Dance, Electronic, Indie Dance/Nu Disco
The Toxic Avenger "Into the Sun"
Album: Romance & Cigarettes
Genres: Dance, Electronic, Indie Dance/Nu Disco
The Toxic Avenger "EYES (€¥€$)"
Album: Romance & Cigarettes
Genres: Dance, Electronic, Indie Dance/Nu Disco
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