Stephane Gervais, aka PsychNerD is a Canadian producer, composer and technologist best known for his productions Goa Trance, Psytrance, Progressive House, Electronica, IDM and Ambient and for his important contribution to Jean-Michel Jarre‘s albums and tours from 2013 to 2019 (Electronica 1 & 2, Oxygene 3, Equinoxe Infinity, Electronica Tour, France Info, HSBC).
From an early age, he was already immersed in computer science, electronics and music, he already mastered the production of music by computer from the beginning of the 90s when he completed his studies in electronic engineering and programming. Armed with computers, samplers, synthesizers and sequencers, he builds his first personal studio and begins his first productions for local DJs and then for the Demoscene community (2D/3D realtime audio-visual productions programmed on computers). In 2007, he produced an 18-minute remix of Kefrens’ Desert Dream, originally composed on Amiga in 1993 and which was voted remix of the year by AmigaRemix In 2009. In 2011, his tracks Voyager 1 and Aeon were released on the compilations The Sound of SceneSat and will mark his debut as an active member of SceneSat Radio.
His first collaborations led him to work with Canadian DJ Marco Grenier, with whom he published the single Faith in 2008. This first production was supported by DJs Armin Van Buuren, Tiesto and Ferry Corsten, among others, and their work attracted the attention of Joachim Garraud, for whom they published a remix of Everybody in 2013. The latter will then put him in contact with Jean-Michel Jarre to assist him on his Electronica project.
Working for Jean-Michel Jarre
He began his work as a production assistant for Jean-Michel Jarre and quickly expanded his participation to composition, sound design, arrangement, mixing, mastering and album distribution. The Electronica project (2015-2016) allows him to contribute through Jarre to the creation of collaborations with the great figures of electronic music (Pet Shop Boys, Vince Clarke, Tangerine Dream, Yello, Gary Numan, Armin Van Buuren, Moby, M83, The Orb, Jeff Mills). The quality of his productions and the versatility he demonstrated led him to revisit Jarre’s classics during the production of the albums Oxygene 3 (2016), Planet Jarre and Equinoxe Infinity (2018). He will finally collaborate on the creation of the soundtracks of the TV channel France Info (2017) and HSBC (2018).
“We started working together for Electronica and instantly clicked for lots of different reasons. He is a very talented musician. But beyond this, we instantly felt we were on the same wavelength. It’s a very special and great link I have with somebody who is far more than just a musician as he is someone who has a lot of different talents.” – Jean-Michel Jarre
Touring around the world
The studio work took a new turn when he worked on the preparation of the shows, since Jarre invited him to join him on stage as a keyboardist for more than sixty concerts. The Electronica world tour brought him to perform across more than 30 countries in Europe, the United Kingdom, the United States, South America and Canada. This concert also headlines the biggest electronic music events and festivals (Sonar, Coachella, Montreux Jazz Festival, Masada, Baalbeck, etc.).
In 2019, he refocuses on his personal productions and returns to Downtempo music with his album series Triptych (2018, 2019), releases the single Neuroland (2019) via the compilation of The Sound Of SceneSat Vol.5 and launches the Project Progressive House Electrogenesis under which he released, in 2019, two singles – Daybreak and Axiom. He eventually returned to his Psytrance roots and began producing two new singles (Planet Nine and Disconnection).
His music mirrors his influences, whether that of the pioneers of electronic music (Jean-Michel Jarre, Vangelis, Kraftwerk), that of the founders of the trance and ambient music of the 90s (Higher Intelligence Agency, Boards Of Canada, Pete Namlook, The Black Dog, Plaid), up to the classics of Goa Trance and Psytrance (Astral Projection, Martin Freeland (Man With No Name), Juno Reactor, The Infinity Project, Psychaos).
“My sound can be summed up by the result of an obsessive use of new technologies to give a new angle to sounds from my past. I try to achieve a balance between articulated, expressive analog sounds, endowed with character and imperfection, and pure digital sounds, cartesian, precise, mathematically perfect.”
Camped behind the ramparts of his studio, equipped with an arsenal of synthesizers, recommended by major music producers and manufacturer of synthesizers or software (Roland, Access Music, Ableton, Native Instruments, AudioRealism, Sonic Charge, Heavyocity), he demonstrates a mastery of the different aspects of production that he carefully applies to his personal productions or those of his customers or collaborators.