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Treponem Pal in 2013
|Origin||Paris, Île-de-France, France|
|Years active||1986–2001, 2006–present|
|Labels||Roadrunner, PolyGram, Listenable, Juste Une Trace|
Treponem Pal is a French industrial metal band formed in 1986 in Paris. The current line-up of the band consists of Marco Neves (vocals), Polak (guitar), Didier Bréard (sampler), Mathys Dubois (drums) and Syn-Anton (bass); the band went through multiple line-up changes with Neves being the only constant member. The band is named after treponema pallidum, the bacterium that causes syphilis. The band's music was described as a mixture of "aggressive metal and a hint of industrial" similar to Godflesh and The Young Gods.
Treponem Pal formed in France in 1986. Their first (Treponem Pal) and third (Excess & Overdrive) albums were produced by Franz Treichler (The Young Gods). Their second, Aggravation was produced by Roli Mosimann (Swans, Wiseblood). This album represents a highly focused achievement, combining Neves' bleak worldview and gift for striking lyrics with the band's controlled aggression, comparable to US bands Chrome and Prong. It was their third album, however, which was to prove most popular with fans. Live performances were extraordinary affairs. Their policy of employing two bass players gave them a massive sound, Michel Bassin was a gifted guitarist (he played with Ministry on one of their US tours) and Marco Neves is a physically imposing performer.
They maintained this style up until fourth album Higher, by which time the focus had shifted towards sampling and electronics, giving that album a more techno feel. Higher was produced by Sascha Konietzko from KMFDM.
The band then broke up, though vocalist Marco Neves and several other members formed a new band called Elephant System, which released one album produced by On-U Sound's Adrian Sherwood. This reflected Neves' longstanding interest in Jamaican and European dub as well as his work as a DJ and MC with the Dub Action Sound System and his involvement with the Hammerbass record label. Bass player Goran Juresic went in a more industrial dub direction with the band Lab° while drummer Didier Serbourdin formed the ultra-aggressive band Fast Forward which combined hardcore techno beats with high-octane metal guitars.
Treponem Pal returned with a new album in March 2008, entitled Weird Machine. The album featured Ted Parsons (from Swans and Prong) on drums and Paul Raven (from Killing Joke, Ministry and Prong) on bass, though tragically Raven suffered heart failure and died while collaborating with the band on the French-Swiss border. The album combined their earlier aggressive sound with more "rock" pieces as well as some "industrial ballads". The album was produced by David Weber and mastered by Maor Appelbaum.
- Michel Bassin - guitar
- Laurent B.- guitars
- Alain "Ferguson" Fornasari - guitar, bass
- Stéphane Cressend - bass
- Amadou Sall - bass
- David Lebrun - drums
- Didier Serbourdin - drums
- Goran Juresic - bass
- Treponem Pal (1989)
- Aggravation (1991)
- Excess & Overdrive (1993)
- Higher (1997)
- Weird Machine (2008)
- Survival Sounds (2012)
- Rockers Vibes (2017)
- "Pushing You Too Far" (1993)
- "Panorama Remixes" (1998)
- "Planet Crash" (2008)
- Coldheart, Stef (7 March 2018). "Interview: Treponem Pal, Sobriety, Power and Originality". peek-a-boo-magazine.be. Retrieved 17 March 2020.
- Book, John. "Treponem Pal". AllMusic. Retrieved 17 March 2020.
- "Paul Raven - Bass player with Killing Joke, Ministry, Prong Dies in Geneva Aged 46 (Jan 16th 1961)" (PHP). LATEST NEWS. SIDE-LINE.com. 2007-10-22. Retrieved 2010-07-29.
Paul Raven Bass player with Killing Joke has died unexpectedly in Geneva in the early hours of Saturday October 20th 2007. Paul had been recording with Ted Parsons and Marco Neves in Geneva for the band Treponem pal. After a days recording Paul retired to bed and did not wake up.