The Tourist Company Interview

Reeperbahn Festival Special mit The Tourist Company

The Tourist Company im Interview - Fotocredit: Christopher-Paul Photography

The Tourist Company im Interview – Fotocredit: Christopher-Paul Photography

Im Reeperbahn Festival Special habe ich The Tourist Company im Interview für Euch.

The Tourist Company kommen aus Vancouver und sie sind Teil des Reeperbahn Festivals dieses Jahr. Das Festival konzentriert sich dieses Jahr mal mehr auf die kanadische Musikszene und hat deshalb eine Reihe an Bands und Musiker nach Deutschland eingeladen, die dort ihren Sound das erste Mal in Europa präsentieren werden. Darunter gehört eben jenes Duo auf welches ich mich richtig freue. Deshalb musste ich den beiden Herren folgende Fragen stellen:

Please just introduce yourself in three sentences.

Hi there! This Taylor from The Tourist Company, and we’re experimental pop/indie rock band from Vancouver, BC. We’ve been playing music together for about 4 years now and we’re excited to get across the Atlantic for some shows.

Canada is hosting the Reeperbahn Festival as a special country this year. In which way you feel honoured to come here to Hamburg and will burn down a Liveset?

It’s a huge deal for us to play at Reeperbahn Festival. We’ve been working towards this since we started as a band playing in our friend’s garage. Many of our favourite musicians have played this same festival so it will be an honour play there to say the least. We’ve spent a ton of time working on our live show touring in Canada over the past few years, and we’ll bring our A-game. We’re really excited to bring some new songs across with us too.

On your facebook site you write that you reject the idea of being confined to the limits. In which way this is not only something like a set phrase for you? And how do you implement this in your songs like in “Irrepressible Future”?

I think for us that phrase is not so much a cliché or a goal as it is just a by-product of our musicality. Both Brenon and I have really eclectic backgrounds and it definitely comes through in our sound. Irrepressible Future was actually a really pivotal song for me as a songwriter. We’d mostly played folk music up until that point, but I just decided to throw out all the usual constraints that we’d worked with and try something different. The result was this bizarre math-pop song in 11/8 time with surf guitars and a pop chorus that drastically changed the way we would approach our music.

Your sound is very wide and open minded. You are adding everything from bright piano plunks to tambourines, bass synths, trumpets or even a harp like in “1957”. How difficult is it not to exaggerate the way you’re writing and arranging your songs?

Hmmm that’s a really good question. It’s been a long process learning how to arrange things well without being too cluttered with all the instruments we like to work with. Our producer Jordan Klassen actually helped us a lot when it came to deciding what parts were important and what parts were just adding noise. With our current set up we get to decide when to use chaos and huge soundscapes, and when to use intimacy and minimalism to say what we want to say. If everything is epic nothing is epic, if everything is minimal, nothing is minimal. That’s the way I approach it anyways.
The Tourist Company im Interview - Fotocredit: Christopher-Paul Photography

The Tourist Company im Interview – Fotocredit: Christopher-Paul Photography

As a completely new act from abroad to Germany: In which way you think it’s kind of an advantage that your songs are all very animate and busy to move your feet?

One of the advantages of making bizarre pop music is that it’s usually pretty attention grabbing. Our live performances are sonically diverse so nothing ever feels stale or redundant. Some of the songs off our last album are easy to dance too, but generally we’ve moved away from the brightness of our older material. Hopefully this show will be good introduction to what we do!

In which way you feel like an ambassador with presenting your music to new people and for people which already know your songs?

I guess we feel that way every time we take the stage in one way or another. The first song of a live show is kind of like introducing ourselves to total strangers, and we are embodying all the sounds we poured so much time into on the recordings. There’s always some anxiety for me in that because some of these songs are really personal. It’s natural for me to hope that people like what I’ve spent my life creating. The people who already know the songs make it all easier, it’s a huge honour for me that these hair-brained ideas that start in my living room somehow end up meaning something to people.

If you have to write something like a weekly report of this week in Germany, here in Hamburg. What are your milestones you want to reach and is there a progress you wish to feel you will make in these days?

The biggest milestone we want to achieve is playing our first show in Germany! Besides that we want to make connections with new fans, other people in the music industry, and get a feel for the culture. Our album “Apollo” is being released in the EU at the end of October, so we really want to see what it’s like over there for ourselves.

To come and play your own songs on a different continent must be amazing. Is it a difficult goal not to have too high expectations?

All of our friends who have played over there have spoken so highly of the live music culture in Europe, so you’re right, it will be difficult to temper our expectations. We’ve been doing this for a little while though, so we’re used to the ups and downs of the music industry, hopefully we’ll be ok.

If we Germans only have time to listen to 2 minutes of any of your songs. Which one should it be to get convinced if your sound?

If you have time to listen to one song I’d say that Pedestals is the most convincing one off of “Apollo”.

 

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