After a debut that blended jazz, turntablism, hip-hop, and indie rock, French producer and remixer Joakim has maintained a similarly eclectic profile, both on his own releases and on his work as a producer, collaborator, remixer, and head of his own influential Tigersushi label.
Born Joakim Bouaziz, the young prodigy began an intensive study of classical music beginning with piano lessons that started at age six. After graduating from the National Conservatory of Versailles, Joakim immersed himself in jazz, American and British indie rock, and hip-hop. Incorporating all of these influences and more, he made his recorded debut with 1999's Joakim Lone Octet, a jazzy and largely instrumental album. In 2003, the more electronic dance-oriented follow-up Fantomes garnered considerably more attention. After four years spent focusing on label duties and remix jobs, releasing the occasional single under his own name, Joakim returned in 2007 with the eclectic Monsters & Silly Songs, featuring the 12" single "Lonely Hearts." The My Best Remixes collection arrived a year later, with the Milky Ways album following in 2009 on the K7 label. His thematic 2011 effort, Nothing Gold, featured the single "Forever Young," along with other tracks that dealt with the artist entering his thirties. Tropics of Love from 2014 was inspired by French artist Camille Henrot, whose artwork graced the album's cover. Following two non-album singles in 2016 ("Daemon" and "Boipeba"), Joakim released Samurai on Tigersushi in 2017. The album was inspired by New York City, where he moved a few years earlier, as well as early-'80s Japanese synth pop and new age. ~ Stewart Mason, Rovi