Sexy Sushi: In the Raw

The acerbic, punky electro-pop duo (one day we’ll do a survey to find out how many duos there are in France relative to the UK) are part of a thriving scene in Nantes that also includes the Valérie collective and Mansfield TYA – in fact, Sexy Sushi (that's Mitch Silver, right, and Reby Combat, left) may well have more than a passing acquaintance with both, but they’re not giving anything away… 

Rockfort: How did you two meet?
Mitch: Sexy Sushi began in March 2003 in Nantes. We met by chance in the music section of a supermarket.
Reby: Yes, yes, yes which is why we never agree on anything.
Rockfort: The lyrics are quite provocative, mostly sociological comments and observations. Why this approach?
Reby: I write about love, joy, hate, animals.
I write about life, victories, viscera, vices and the depraved.
I write as if I’m drinking a glass of water.
With or without a straw.
Rockfort: Mitch, What is your role in Sexy Sushi?

Mitch: Well, I play drums. I also put together a performance with myself and Reby with the intention of understanding what we’re about at a given moment. If we were to follow this rationale we would surely be able to explain the universe.
Reby: I believe profoundly in humanity. I believe in it even when I doubt it.
Rockfort: Do you think you will be invited to Mme Bruni-Sarkozi’s garden party this year?

Mitch: Maybe to mow the lawn. I’ve got a great tracksuit for that. 
Rockfort: What is your opinion on marriage? 

Mitch: What a strange question! I think it’s the most beautiful thing in the world.
Reby: Marriage doesn’t interest me. I don’t like dresses or family gatherings. But when Mitch gets married, he told me that I can organise the games. And that makes me very proud and impatient. (I’ll put in a big tombola for your uncles and aunts! We’ll have such a laugh).

Rockfort: Could you tell us more about your involvement with Mansfield Tya?

Reby: Pardon?
Rockfort: Are you planning to start a career in cinema?

Mitch: One day I’ll direct a film in Hollywood.
Reby: I’ll be a lead actress, or else a robot come to destroy the world. 
Rockfort: Is Scandale! Records your own label? Can you tell us more about it?

Mitch: Scandale! Records is a young Parisian label started by Adrien and Maud, the organisers of famous nights that go by the same name. 
Reby: We released our first albums off our own backs and on a fictional label called Merdier Records! Then the album ‘Marre Marre Marre’ was a compilation of the first three records (‘J'en Veux J'en Veux Des Coups De Poings Dans Les Yeux’, ‘Défonce Ton Ampli’ and "Ça M'aurait Fait Chier D'exploser") was purely a digital release. Scandale! then suggested releasing a vinyl, then the new album, which is both gentle and hard, sweet and fruity like a fruit of the forest. I’ve said enough.
Rockfort: How important are live shows for you? Any memorable moments?

Mitch: I think every one of our gigs is different. We also think that’s what people are looking for, something not too slick. Our events are as playful as a secondary school history textbook. Once, I lost my underpants.
Reby: Sexy Sushi concerts consist of the following:
30 people killed at gunpoint
1 sacrificed hostage
2 cryogenic freezings under medical supervision
34 stage invasions by the audience
8 gig cancellations (1 due to drowning)
2 hospitalisations
76 mild injuries
1 slap in the face courtesy of a security guard
26 guest appearances (including Axel Red and Régina Pacific)
1 pogo to an Olivia Ruiz song
45689 litres of liquid consumed and/or spilled
Rockfort: What sort of audience do you get at your shows?
Mitch: Drug addicts, whores, child rapists, paedophiles, bus drivers, DJs, accountants, dykes, parents, the deaf and the mute.

Rockfort: Mitch, you are the chairman of the Valérie collective. Could you tell us more about it? What is your role in the collective? What projects do have you coming up?

Mitch: You are mistaken, it’s my cousin who does all that.
Rockfort: What are your thoughts on the current French music scene?
Mitch: We like Cali and Olivia Ruiz for the happiness that they emanate.

Reby: And Pierre Bachelet, but he’s dead.
Interview by Ludovic Merle, translated in English by David McKenna