AU ABROAD

the AU interview: Eva Michon, Director of "Life After Death From Above" talks about working with DFA 1979.

The new Death From Above 1979 Documentary, Life After Death From Above has been released on VOD through Vimeo, so we caught up with the film's director Eva Michon to find out how she got involved in the project, what it was like working with Sebastien and Jesse, their tense first rehearsals before Coachella and much more...

How did you end up finding yourself making this documentary?

Sebastien and Jesse asked me if I would make a documentary about their reunion. It evolved into a project spanning a decade because I first started documenting them around 2003.

What is your first memory of encountering the music of DFA?

My first memory is probably listening to their first demos that Jesse sent me. They were so great and I listened to them a lot! The first time I saw them play was in a small bar in the afternoon in Toronto, and everyone in the room looked at each other like we were seeing something very special.

Hardest part about making the film?

Because of my proximity to the guys, I had full access to them but it then became difficult to step away and gain perspective in the editing process. The hardest part was picking the story to tell and forgetting about all the other stuff.

Best part about making the film?

Shooting the moments I knew would make it into the final edit, namely the show at SXSW that turned into a riot. We knew it was an important moment for the band and for the audience.

What did you learn about the men behind DFA through the process, and perhaps about the music industry in general?

Seb and Jesse have a unique friendship and an undeniable creative chemistry. I think it's an anomaly in the landscape of the music industry to put something on hold while people around you are frothing at the mouth. I'm inspired by how un-phony they are.

Tell us a bit about the first rehearsal you were able to film - What was that experience like?

It was tense! I remember that they took a very long time setting up. They were just sort of procrastinating and making nervous chit-chat until finally starting to play. I think we probably ran out of footage and had to offload mid-way through the practice because of how long the lead-up took.

With the SXSW showcase, what was the band's view on the reaction by the crowd and/or the police? Expected?

I don't think they expected it, but I think they secretly hoped it would cause a commotion, and it energized them. They definitely didn't think this tiny show would draw over 1000 people, who would then be maced and dispersed by cops. I'm sure they also didn't expect the level of horse-harassment that took place.

How was the mood on ground before the Coachella Performance?

Nerve-racking. I did not envy them at that moment.

Any chance of extended musician interviews on the Bluray/DVD?

Definitely! There is so much great footage and funny bloopers that I'm dying to share.

Any plans for a "Coda" exploring the making of The Physical World and subsequent tour?

If down the line, the guys want to put together a "behind the album" kind of thing, we've got enough footage of them recording TPW to make a film. I'm not really planning on shooting them on tour for a while -- looking forward to watching their shows as a fan again, and not worrying I'll miss something if I don't film.

How do the band feel about being back on the road now, if so, and how do you think it compares to 2011?

I think they're excited to be touring again, and most of all, there's a sense of relief to be performing new songs. I'm sure it feels a bit like closure for them.

What else are you working on at the moment, what's next for you?

I'm writing my next film, which is not a documentary -- and always shooting shorts, music videos, etc! Most of all I'm enjoying this quiet space in-between big projects.

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Rent or Buy the film now on Vimeo On Demand: https://vimeo.com/ondemand/dfa1979movie/