Track By Track: PAPER TAPES discusses his new album, Child, one track at a time

Album cover for Child by PAPER TAPES courtesy of the artist

Crafted by the singular vision of the French pop maestro Cyril Angleys, PAPER TAPES has unveiled his debut LP, Child. Following his Homecoming EP from 2020, Angleys draws inspiration from Stereolab, French Touch, and ’70s soundtracks to shape this highly anticipated album. With meticulous artistry, Child showcases Angleys’ evolution, offering a mesmerizing collection of ten tracks that encapsulate his sonic identity through dreamy melodies and intricate instrumentals. Join us as Cyril Angleys shares his journey, providing exclusive insights into the evocative stories behind each track on Child.

Alongside the exclusive track-by-track, Cyril has curated a special playlist highlighting the diverse array of songs that served as influential touchstones for the creation of Child. This supplementary playlist offers an intriguing glimpse into the musical tapestry that inspired and shaped the album’s unique soundscape. Dive deep into PAPER TAPES’ sonic universe that contributed to the making of Child.

1. ‘No Answer’

I wrote this song in two distinct moments, at first I had this kind of weird Bossa Nova hook with a bass part, but then I really struggled to find a second part which would match with it. I finally found it during lockdown. This song is really important to me because it opened me to a new groove, more guitar-driven. ‘No Answer’ was definitely influenced by my deep love for Stereolab at that time.

2. ‘Cut the Cord’

I started with this kind of G-Funk beat, and the rest came pretty easily to me. It’s very ethereal, I love the pitched synth sounds and the bubble gum melody on the chorus as well. Working on the outro, I had a Roy Ayers track in mind called ‘Programmed for Love.’ I think that somehow I tried to make my own version of it. Lyrically, it’s all about the mother-son relationship.

3. ‘Plastics’

‘Plastics’ starts with a sample from Mike Nichols’ The Graduate. It’s my favorite movie ever, and I couldn’t imagine not quoting it on my first record. It’s a scene where Dustin Hoffman is being asked about his own future. But he doesn’t know, he just wants to enjoy youth. Cinema is as important as music to me, and ‘Plastics’ has definitely a “score vibe.” It’s probably the most nostalgic song of this album.

4. ‘Sunshower’

I wanted to have an upbeat track. I think that I started with a drum loop and then I builded the song on top of it. In a way, ‘Sunshower’ is three songs in one, I really like the fact that this song is developing in those three distinct parts. My favorite is the ending one with these guitar arpeggios.

5. ‘Locked Crush’

During lockdown, I had an epistolary relationship with a girl from work. We texted each other on a daily basis, we chatted about anything, sending each other new music… I really fell for her at a distance. At that time I didn’t know when we would see each other again. I had no clue, but I was longing to see her. So this song talks about that, really wanting to be with someone but not knowing when it will be possible.

6. ‘Low’

It’s my favorite song on the album and it’s also the oldest one. I had it before my first EP. I reworked it during lockdown, I changed the topline, and created a new beat, more hip-hop driven. In fact, we just played it unplugged adding vocal harmonies on the chorus and it sounds really cool. I might record this alternative version. The main topic of the song is meditation, and how it’s helping me to stay grounded.

7. ‘Bumper Sticker’

I had a hard time with that track. It took me a long time to accept that it was just going to be an instrumental. I spent hours trying to put vocals on it but it wasn’t working. Guitars are really leaning on ‘IFHY,’ a song by Tyler, the Creator featuring Pharrell. On the chorus I had a BadBadNotGood song in mind called ‘Speaking Gently’ I really wanted to create a synth sound that would be in the same tone.

8. ‘Off the Map’

This song contains an important lyric for me: “The more I hope, the less it will happen” which is kind of a reminder to just stay focused on the present. I anticipate the future quite a lot, I always imagine what could happen next in different kinds of situations, especially when it involves romantic relationships. On a musical level, I think was reaching for a classic R&B vibe, just like an old TLC tune.

9. ‘Flippant Mind’

I experimented lots of things on that song. I was really looking for a new way of writing a pop song, allowing myself to just “try and see.” I would say that it’s a very peculiar track, I used chords that I’ve never used before. It had also been written in three different parts, I like the main theme and I’m really found of the coda.

10. ‘Overdue’

My creativity is often driven by the sound and tone of instruments. Somehow I can project myself and visualize a song with a very precise sound. This one was like that. I found this odd guitar harmony and the rest came straight away. It was pretty evident that I was going to be the ending track of my album.

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