Category_Collecting, Category_Groovy Stuff, Category_VHS, Category_Weirdness -

Media Production Outfit PARIS GROUP INTERNATIONAL Mashes Up Analog Aesthetics and Electro Music Madness for Amazing Slabs of Magnetic Magic!

Paris Group International is a VHS-obsessed creative crew founded on the collaboration of analog sights and eclectic electro-grooves. Aside from being a heavy-hitting media production company with clients the world over, they’ve taken their talents to the task of re-animating one of the seemingly less celebrated staples of the video era: the music home video! And in-between their current journeys into the musical realm of magnetic magic, I was able to catch up with one of PGI’s main brains Paolo Xz as he details their perpetual plunge into the static filled, wonderfully wonky world of VHS aesthetics and their unending appreciation and homage to those distinctive features of our favorite format. Read on, my fellow Tapheads, ‘cause PGI’s got an ample dose of diverse analog excitement in store in the not too distant future…

A super-groovy analog soaked logo screen from the peeps at PGI. This is RAD.

LM: Can you tell us a little bit about Paris Group International and what it’s all about? Paulo Xz: Paris Group International is a world-renowned media production company specializing in live visuals, music videos and VHS tapes. At the moment, PGI is comprised primarily by Elijah Rosa Pratts, Jono Mi Lo, Myself , Nineties Goulet, Advanced Boi, Camila Carrillo and PXL aka CrashOverride.

PGI's VHS release of the DREAMS - LOST KINGDOM Lp featuring a massively bitchin' assemblage of electro-awesome backed by trademark analog aesthetics. Click HERE to DIG IT.

You’ve already done a couple VHS releases featuring some trippy visuals and electronic grooves. Can you tell us more about the specific artists / releases, and why you wanted to commit their music to VHS? Who handles the visual aspects of VHS? Our first VHS release was the visualization of DREAMS’ - Lost Kingdom LP, which saw core members of Paris Group creating music videos for each track on the album. The formation of this project was the impetus to found the group, when we realized the strength of our potential output. Some upcoming projects include a music video album from PXA, an Italian horror-inspired video album from Renato Montenegro & myself , and a winter workout tape featuring Michael Jukeson. We are also gearing up for our biggest project yet: our second full-length video album to be released on VHS next spring in tandem with a vinyl release on Astro Nautico, the details of which cannot yet be announced. We also just launched a series of white label (gasp!) DVD releases beginning with a collection of original music videos from esteemed PGI member Jono Mi Lo. These DVD releases will be aggressively limited.

More analog awesome from PGI. Check out more magnetic mash-up shtuff from their camp RIGHT HURR.

You’re a musician yourself, and you handled some of the music in ADJUST YOUR TRACKING. Can you tell us about the experience creating it? The kind of angle you took, your inspiration? I actually had created most of the music before seeing the movie. I saw AYT announce that they were looking for 80s-style upbeat/synth-y music compositions for the movie, which was exactly the kind of stuff I was making. I sent a pile of tracks over to Dan Kinem at AYT to choose from, and I think he ended up using about 10-12 of them. It was definitely a trip to see all this music I had been sitting on getting played in theaters around the country!

The poster for ADJUST YOUR TRACKING from the amazing hand of Devon Whitehead. Hey, that's my name on there! COOL.

I found out about your site through the too groovy PLAY sweatshirt. Not only is it a super-rad analog affirming threads, there’s a pretty interesting story behind it, too? You’ve got some other rad VHS love swag over there, too, right? Yeah, we started making these a few months ago as a means to fund future PGI projects. Shortly afterwards, someone accused us of stealing their idea (we didn’t!) and shortly after that, I started seeing more versions of the same idea popping up. Nothing stays secret on the internet for long. By some weird stroke of luck though, ours has reached near-meme status on Tumblr after Jono Mi Lo posted it.

Damn, this thing is so rad. Christmas is comin', Tapeheads! I KNOW IT'S ON MY LIST.

What is about VHS that you love? What attracts you to it? The static, the grain and the colors. I love the malleability of VHS. I also love the fact that VHS tapes are junk to most people and that some of the best stuff you’ll find is just sitting in basements or in cardboard boxes on the street.

A look at the copious amounts of analog affirming stickers available from PGI. BUY A VCR. It's a good message.

What do you think of the resurgence in interest in our favorite format? I think it’s great! I’ve noticed that much of the renewed interest is built on a solid base of B-Horror fans collecting and trading rare tapes, which is awesome. I’m sure a lot of it also stems from people tired of Hollywood relentlessly force-feeding us the same bullshit year after year. There is a raw, physical sensibility about not just VHS tapes themselves but also the way in which low-budget independent movies were made that I think speaks to people on a more familiar, human level. There is something amazing about watching a good (or “so bad it's good') movie and at the same time thinking “I could make this”.

An array of analog-inspired prints from PGI. These peeps are spreading the love any way they can, man.

What’s next for PGI and AN? As for Paris Group, we will be working very closely with Astro Nautico in the future. We will also be holding down visuals for Boiler Room in LA and NYC next year. Pairing videos with music is a large part of what we do, but we will also be exploring other projects like interactive installations, short film releases, skate videos, rare tape re-issues, etc. We are always down to collaborate with other artists and one of our big goals for next year is to do an annual VHS-zine release, with music and video contributions from people all over the world.

And for good measure, one more PGI analog aesthetic creation. Damn, I just can't get enough!

Anything else you’d like to say to all the Tapeheads out there? I would say for anyone interested in pressing VHS tapes themselves, it’s surprisingly not that hard. You might have to dig a little, but you can find solid tape duplicators on eBay for a couple hundred bucks that ranged in the thousands when they first came out in the 80s. The VHS resurgence will depend on the people who want to see it happen. Long live the new flesh.

Long live the new flesh, indeed, Paulo! Big ups to Paolo and his crew for makin' some seriously eclectic video aesthetic creations. PGI’s got some dope ass analog attacks in store for the Videovores wanting to take a break from the blood and boobs of standard cult VHS practices proving the appreciation for analog aesthetics is taking to various incarnations and creating an assorted army of video era vindication. And that’s pretty groovy, mang. Be sure to groove on over to PGI’s Facebook, Tumblr and Official Web Store then get hip and follow them on Instagram @parisgroupintl and on Twitter @parisgroup2001. GET WONKY AND WEIRD. EVERY DAY.

Groove and Groove and Get Ready for AWESOME FOODS! HAPPY TURKEY DAY, TAPEHEADS!!

Josh Schafer

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