Drummer Michel Langevin is one of Canada’s best-known and most respected metal musicians. As founding and most long-standing member of influential metal legend Voivod
, Langevin (aka Away) is behind Voivod's sci-fi/fantasy concept albums, lyrics and artwork. He is a member of two other bands, Kosmos, inspired by 70s Kosmische Musik, and Les Ékorchés, an acoustic thrash metal band who released their self-titled debut in 2007.
Born in Québec, Langevin started drumming at 14. In 1980 he started a band with bassist Jean-Yves Thériault and Denis "Piggy" D’Amour that would later, with the addition of vocalist Denis Bélanger develop into Voivod proper. The furious aggression of their 1984 debut long player War & Pain
launched Voivod as one of the earliest thrash metal bands. They found a solid metal/hardcore following and set the stage for a convoluted musical evolution that has spanned more than two decades.
An established graphic designer, Langevin is a fan of science, quantum physics, conspiracy theories, vampires and robotics, and is credited with the creation of the band mythology cantering around the post-apocalyptic vampire lord Voivod, and is largely responsible for its continuing science fiction themes
Langevin also does some 3D computer work as seen in the Negatron artwork, using Softimage software. Voivod reached the peak of their popularity with the 1989 release Nothingface
, which featured a cover version of Pink Floyd's "Astronomy Domine" (from The Piper at the Gates of Dawn
Voivod are still going strong in 2008/9 with a new line-up featuring ex-Metallica Jason Newsted as a studio musician.
Kosmos, Langevin’s second band project, described as prog-rock-avant-garde-kraut-post-punk
, was formed in 2005-6. Inspired by '70s Krautrock bands like Neu!, Faust and Can, and more obscure bands including Birth Control and Omega, Kosmos combine heavy prog rock with the retro, effect-laden sounds of space/psych rock. Members are: Paradise guitarist Jetphil, Groovy Aardvark and Grim Skunk bassist Vincent Peake and keyboardist/programmer Alex Crow. The band also recruited underground Montréal musicians for guest appearances on the self-titled debut released in 2007 (The End Records). Guests included Xavier Caféïne, the singer for punk band Caféïne, and Lucien Francoeur of the '70s experimental band Aut'Chose.
In 2006, Langevin launched another project with fellow legends of Canadian metal Pat Gordon (Ghoulunatics), Marc Vaillancourt (B.A.R.F.) and Philippe Mius D'Entremont (Maruka) called Les Ékorchés, an acoustic hardcore/thrash metal band. In February 2007 their first album Les Ékorchés
was released on Indica Records.
More recently Langevin has teamed up for performances with experimental sound artist Martin Tétreault
. One of their recordings was included on one the 2008 Oral labels compilation series, Ostinato 28
. Langevin has also played and toured with the band Men Without Hats and with artist Jim Thirwell / Foetus.
> CTM.09 > FRICTIONS