Former Tesla Cøils mastermind and frontman Jed A. Walters has launched his new solo project Chiffon Magnifique with a hard-hitting single, titled ‘Abomination’, and a wonderfully creepy accompanying video.
‘Abomination’ is the debut single from Chiffon Magnifique, and definitely stays true to Jed’s post-punk/minimal wave vibes. The song opens with a flourish of cheesy 80’s horror synth arpeggios, before launching into an unrelenting chug of rusty bass guitar and four-on-the-floor drums. Echoey guitar, with nods to Cocteau Twins and Sisters of Mercy, punctuates across the track, while the lyrics drawl through reverb. As for the vid, it’s probably better seen than described. Yeesh!
We shot some questions through to Jed ahead of the project’s release and his upcoming launch shows.
Congrats on the new musical project! How long has it been in the works, and what’s your vision for the future of it?
Thank you. Some of the material for this project dates back as far as a couple of years, and I wasn’t aware that it would eventually come into fruition under a brand new name. After Tesla Cøils finished up last year, I took some time on my own writing some new material and reworking some older stuff. These new tracks just sound like a completely different band (I’m playing a lot more guitar now – something I hadn’t tried in years – I’ve hidden behind synths for so long), so it just made sense to present this new material as a new act. Plus, I chose a name that not only means something special (chiffon meaning a fragile material, magnifique meaning magnificent – get it?), but is also much easier to Google for fans!
I have almost an entire album of material that I’m dying to release and perform. I’m planning on releasing a bunch of singles and videos first bit by bit, before I share it as an entire concept album.
Some of that animal footage gave me the serious heebies – I guess that’s the point. Where on earth did you source it and how much material did you have to go through to get the final shots?
It took quite a lot of deep diving throughout stock wildlife footage on the internet, but honestly, not that long really once I gained momentum. I storyboarded the video first, and every single shot was marked as things like “snake lashes out”, “mantids mating”, “gross looking deep sea fish”, and from there, I just had to Google until I found the right footage for each shot. I also filmed a bunch at home – including myself playing the instruments, and bugging my girlfriend to be in it (that’s her lips up close painted black, and her hands and arms make quite a few cameos!).
Now that you’re a one man band, what can audiences expect from your live show? How much of it will you be playing live?
I tried the one-man show out for the first time live at Moondoll Festival in Brisbane last month. It turned out even better than I had hoped. I find it’s important to put as much physical energy and honest emotion into the vocals and musicianship for the audiences to buy it. My new show incorporates intricate vocal effects for each song, including looping; I play guitar through a bunch of mod effects (think The Cure, Sisters of Mercy, Cocteau Twins sorts of sounds); and on some songs I play a bunch of analog synth sounds that I’ve sampled from my collection at home. So I’ve still got my work cut out for me. I would be open to introducing more band members in the future, but for now it’s kinda hard to find the right people with all the uncertainty in the world and our industry. So, I’ll manage on my own for now.
Each of your projects seems to feel more and more like a true representation of you as an artist. Do you think you’re on a really authentic path with Chiffon Magnifique?
Yes, I would absolutely agree. There has always been a strong passion behind all of my projects, but I can safely say that Chiffon Magnifique is a true representation of who I am right now, inside and out. I’m not hiding behind gimmicks or spectacle now – I’m telling my stories through a lens that is truly authentic to me. I’m singing about mental health issues, insecurity, despair, death, love, sex, whatever. And I’m making music in the subgenres that I would seek out myself. I’m loving this process.
What’s up next?
I’m playing my first Gold Coast show at Vinnies Dive on 28 October. I’m playing with some good local friends of mine – Veople and Jake Morton & The Goose Squad. This is a very eclectic lineup and I can promise a night of authentic and unique music. I love Vinnies and I’m so excited to be able to present my new project on their iconic stage. After that, I’m heading up for another Brisbane show, this time supporting the inimitable Purple Zain, on 12 November at King Lear’s Throne. Following this, I just want to play as many live shows as I can and keep sharing my new music with everybody.
Is there anything else you’d like people to know?
Always be yourself. You are a precious soul!
Visit chiffonmagnifique.com and fb.com/chiffonmagnifique for more. Catch Chiffon Magnifique + Veople + Jake Morton & The Goose Squad live on 28 October at Vinnies Dive. Tix here. Check out a teaser of the video for ‘Abomination’ below: