French producer SebastiAn established a unique style of glitchy, distortion-heavy electro-house during the mid-2000s, later moving on to film scores and production work for several pop stars. His early EPs, including 2006's Ross Ross Ross, helped define the abrasive yet dancefloor-friendly sound of Parisian label Ed Banger Records, which he expanded on with his proper debut album, 2011's Total and on remixes for artists like Daft Punk, Kelis, and Cut Copy. After staying behind the scenes for much of the 2010s, producing music for Charlotte Gainsbourg and Frank Ocean, his 2019 album Thirst drew from the different projects he'd worked on as well as the sound he helped pioneer.
Born Sebastian Akchote in Boulogne, France, SebastiAn started producing music at 15 and honed his skills working with regional rap groups. In 2005, one of these groups pointed him in the direction of Ed Banger CEO Pedro Winter and, after a cold call, he was signed to the label sight unseen. The next few years were extremely busy. On top of recording a 7" split with Krazy Baldhead and four SebastiAn EPs between 2005 and 2008 (Smoking Kills, Ross Ross Ross, Walkman 2, and Motor), Akchote was a remix machine, reworking songs by Daft Punk, Annie, Cut Copy, Revl9n, Uffie, Kelis, and Kavinsky, among others. Much of this work was featured on a 17-track 2008 compilation titled SebastiAn Remixes (aka A Fine Selection of Remixes). In addition to his other endeavors, he scored the soundtrack for 2010's Notre Jour Viendra (Our Day Will Come) before finally releasing his definitive debut, Total, in 2011. The album included collaborations with M.I.A. ("C.T.F.O.") and Mayer Hawthorne ("Love in Motion"). The album's singles were compiled on a limited box set, 2012's The EP Collection, which included an addition 12" featuring two previously unreleased tracks.