(Cross-posted from Blogcritics.org)
8mm is Sean and Juliette Bevan. Their names may not look familiar to you, but you may have heard the music that Sean has produced. He has been involved with Nine Inch Nails, Marilyn Manson, No Doubt, Thrice, and many other well-known bands. This husband and wife duo was formed while Sean was producing Kill Hanna’s For Never And Ever, and the band made the last minute request to add female backup vocals. It just so happened that Juliette stopped by the studio and was asked to help. She had never sung in front of Sean before, and everyone was floored by her sultry yet delicate voice. This was the inspiration for Sean to create this downtempo and trip-hop project, and 8mm was formed.
In 2004, 8mm quietly released their 6 song EP, Opener. The band’s down-tempo trip-hop with a dark, haunting, and seductive sound quickly generated a local underground buzz in Los Angeles, and attracted the attention of the LA Times, Internet word-of-mouth, and Nic Harcourt of KCRW who “Got 8mm and put it on the air the next day.”
2005 and 2006 were very busy for 8mm, which saw their popularity gain momentum with ranking in the Top 3 of MySpace in Downtempo and Trip-Hop, plays on many podcasts, as well as a nationwide tour which they booked with the help of their MySpace friends.
September 26th marks the long awaited release of their first full length CD, Songs to Love and Die By on the newly formed Curb Appeal Records. The CD features two of the songs from their Opener EP (“Never Enough”, “Give It Up”), and eight new songs.
Nine of the songs feature the beautiful voice of Juliette, which has been described as a cross between “Billie Holiday and Jessica Rabbit,” and the first track, “No Way Back” gives the listener a wonderful introduction to Juliette’s hypnotic voice.
As the songs progress, you will become more and more enthralled by the breathtaking voice of Juliette and the guitar groove that Sean produces. The first single, “Stunning,” could easily be featured on a movie soundtrack as the credits roll by. In fact, many of 8mm’s songs could be included in a movie soundtrack, they sound that good.
At track six, “Liar”, the music slows even more for a slight acoustic break where Juliette sings about someone who is lying about the love they once had.
The CD then continues the dark, yet beautiful down-tempo weave, leaving you with the final track, which is sung by both Sean and Juliette, “Forever and Ever Amen.” This song is slightly different than the other songs, with it’s piano instead of guitar, yet it still keeps the core 8mm feel. Keep listening to the end of the last song, there is an additional 11th track, which is strictly acoustic guitar with Sean and Juliette singing along about an adventure between heaven and hell.
As I stated earlier, 8mm has a huge following on MySpace, with even an official remix page featuring remixes of “Stunning,” and with more to come in the future.
I have enjoyed 8mm since I first heard them on a fellow Detroit Podcaster’s show, >Digital Detroit Radio. After listening to his show, I quickly bought the EP and looked forward to this full length, as well as a future tour. I have played 8mm’s songs on my own podcast, Zaldor’s World, as well and I was even fortunate enough to interview Sean and Juliette in April of 2006 for my podcast (Episode 102), when they played in Pontiac, Michigan. They are just as incredible and hypnotic live as they are on the CD, and they are the most friendliest people you could meet. This CD should expose their incredible songs to an even wider audience and give them the attention they so deserve. 8mm will be touring again in 2007, they’re well worth going to see if you enjoy their music, and feel free to say “Hi” to them and tell them how much you enjoy their music – They’d love to meet you!