|Laurent Mercier (producer, animator), Xavier Semen (producer, lead animator)|
Callicore is a Paris-based studio which specializes in CGI animated music videos. Created by Laurent Mercier in 2000, the studio has produced videos for artists such as John Lee Hooker, Jr., The Buzzcocks, Cake, Marky Ramone, Carbon/Silicon and Arrested Development. The studio was named a 2009 Webby Award honoree for its work on Hooker's video, Blues Ain't Nothin' But a Pimp.
History and style
Born in 1967, Laurent Mercier attended the École nationale supérieure des Beaux-Arts, and spent several years as an independent multimedia artist, organizing collective exhibitions, and analyzing the condition and status of artists in society. He also worked with the publishing firm, Association for the Development of Multimedia Literature.
Irritated by what he perceived as the "stranglehold" of major media companies on the music industry and other creative industries, Mercier launched Callicore as a "resistance act" against the "cultural dictatorship of the media" by these large-scale companies. Callicore controls all aspects of its projects, from pre-production to post-production, and retains a relatively independent and free nature.
One of the first collaborations between Mercier and Xavier Semens, who joined Callicore in 2006, was the animated video for Phantom Rider, a song from the 2007 album, Hymn for the Hellbound, by the British psychobilly group The Meteors. That same year, Callicore produced an animated video for Sound of a Gun, by the British punk band The Buzzcocks (the initial video was considered too violent for broadcast television, and a second, less violent version was released).
Callicore created the animated video for Blues Ain't Nothin' But a Pimp, a song from John Lee Hooker, Jr.'s Grammy Award-winning album, All Odds Against Me. The video portrays Hooker as a comic book character, "Bluesman", who plays in clubs at night and cleans up the streets during the day. The video was a Webby Award honoree in the Special FX/Motion Graphics category in 2009. An image from the video was featured on the album's cover.
In 2008, Callicore produced its first video for Carbon/Silicon, a band founded by Mick Jones, the former guitarist for The Clash, and bass player Tony James. In 2010, the studio produced the video for hip-hop group Arrested Development's Bloody, as well as for When We Were Angels by Marky Ramone's Blitzkrieg, a project of former Ramones drummer, Marky Ramone.
In 2011, Callicore created the video for Cake's Long Time, a track from the band's comeback album, Showroom of Compassion. In an interview with Cake singer John McCrea, Mercier said the gloomy mood of the video, which follows the plight of a man and his monkey imprisoned in a dystopian world, was inspired directly by Cake's music, which reminds him of "melancholy things." McCrea was impressed by the video's general movement and choreography, which he suggested are often lacking in music videos, and appreciated how Mercier perceived the non-humorous side of Cake's music.
Callicore produced and directed videos for artists such as Brian Setzer, Lee Rocker, Eagle-Eye Cherry and Dr. Feelgood, from 2011 to 2013. The studio has continued its collaboration with John Lee Hooker, Jr., with several videos featuring the "Bluesman" character created for Blues Ain't Nothin' But a Pimp.
|2007||Sound of a Gun||The Buzzcocks|
|2007||Phantom Rider||The Meteors|
|2008||I'm a Dead Cat||Washington Dead Cats|
|2008||Mick Jones and Tony James on G-Rock Radio||Carbon/Silicon|
|2008||Blues Ain't Nothin' But a Pimp||John Lee Hooker, Jr.|
|2009||Stressed Out||John Lee Hooker, Jr.|
|2009||People Want a Change||John Lee Hooker, Jr.|
|2009||Vixen||Pete & Charlie|
|2009||What's Up Doc?||Carbon/Silicon|
|2010||Venus||We Are the Fury|
|2010||Extramarital Affair||John Lee Hooker, Jr.|
|2010||It's a Shame||John Lee Hooker, Jr.|
|2010||When We Were Angels||Marky Ramone's Blitzkrieg|
|2010||Never Stop the Hate Train||The Meteors|
|2011||Go-Go Godzilla||Brian Setzer|
|2012||Dear John||John Lee Hooker, Jr.|
|2012||He Wants It||Clinic Rodeo|
|2012||Rockabilly Boogie||Lee Rocker|
|2013||Go Simmer Down||Eagle-Eye Cherry|
|2013||Who Do You Love?||Dr. Feelgood|
- French Association of Animation Cinema. Retrieved: 8 November 2013. (French)
- Read More, Callico official website. Retrieved: 30 October 2013.
- "Bluesman John Lee Hooker, Jr. Continues to Garner Nods for 'All Odds Against Me' CD", African American News, DogonVillage.com. Retrieved: 31 October 2013.
- "The Story," Callicore official website. Retrieved: 30 October 2013.
- Tamara Harris, "John Lee Hooker, Jr. Secures Grammy Nomination," Kickmag, 8 December 2008. Retrieved: 3 November 2013.
- "About John Lee Hooker, Jr., Blues Underground Network. Retrieved: 3 November 2013.
- 13th Annual Webby Awards Gallery, 2009. Retrieved: 3 November 2013.
- "John Lee Hooker, Jr. Biography", John Lee Hooker, Jr., official website. Retrieved: 3 November 2013.
- "Cake's 'Long Time' Tells the Story of a Man and his Monkey," Rolling Stone, 1 April 2011. Retrieved: 3 November 2013.
- Laurent Mercier and John McCrea, interview, MTV, 2011.