Somewhere in the heat of New Orleans you’ll find that life is lived differently. It’s a place of ghosts and celebration, a place where music hangs heavy in the air and all the music and all the souls that have ever played it there somehow remain, alive and buoyant in the humidity. The thickness this gives the air slows things down a bit, and when you breathe it in it soaks through your bones and settles in the marrow. There is an ethereal wave, a pulse really, that you can ride through the chaos. It becomes part of your blood and your eyes begin to change. You will never see this world the same. You will never feel the same about this city or this life. It has taken part of you and given something beautiful and painful back. This kind of enchantment is the reason that people are drawn to New Orleans. It’s as if the city wakes and surges to the surface just enough for you to hear her heart beat, hear her breath.
The city itself is curved into the shape of a crescent moon by a dark and muddy river that would drown you as soon as let you swim in it. Moss hangs from ancient oak trees that look down on their dark reflections in cracked and wet asphalt. In this city, beneath their gaze, there was Juliette, her heels clicking, marking time on the make shift mirror. In this city, she met Sean.
Sean had moved from the post industrial age wasteland of Cleveland, Ohio to this haunting land of jazz funerals and brass bands with Trent Reznor and the band Nine Inch Nails. As Trent’s longtime engineer, co -producer, and musical director, Sean helped forge the sound of NIN from studio to the stage. Finally having a home base for various projects, Sean and Trent set about building a studio in an old abandoned funeral home in the heart of uptown New Orleans. It was during this time that, being a mortal man, Sean succumbed to the whimsy and sway of a southern girl and met his muse in Juliette. After finishing mixing Marilyn Manson’s epic “Antichrist Superstar”, Sean left the NIN camp and followed up with Manson’s “Mechanical Animals” During production of which Sean and Juliette moved to the land of stars, scars and broken dreams: Los Angeles.
While Sean was producing the Atlantic Records band “Kill Hannah” the request to add a female voice to a chorus led him to ask the lovely Juliette to add some vocals on the last day of recording. When Juliette started to sing, the texture and dynamic of her voice bewitched both Sean and his engineer “Critter”. Inspired by her ethereal voice, Sean immediately set about to write the music for the song “Never Enough” almost as an experiment. He gave Juliette the music and asked her to write lyrics and a vocal melody to it. The resulting confessional story with the plaintive refrain “I’ll never be enough for you” became a blue print for the tapestry of sorrow and beauty in the works that followed.
The two decided to become 8mm, a name that reflected the tone of their songs. The image of an old 8mm projector whirring in a clandestine back room called to mind innermost secrets and forbidden desires. The kind of thoughts we keep to ourselves, the hidden motives that drive our public lives. Very much influenced by the pulse and undercurrent of the haunted and haunting New Orleans and the bluster and underlying power plays that accompany even a simple “hello” in Los Angeles, 8mm has opened our diaries and shown us how alike we are.