By Staff on October 8, 2013
For this special Culture Collide issue of the Guide, we asked some of the artists playing our festival to share some of their American tales with us.
Making the flight from Down Under, New Zealand's Ghost Wave talk about US shows, gear they're on the lookout for and discovering the "weird" American Dream.
What was your first experience onstage in front of an American audience like? Was it comparable to playing at home?
In America, the vibe for us is always good, especially for shows. At home, we’re a lot more comfortable, in that we know a handful of people in the crowd most of the time, whereas in the States it’s a lot nicer for me in the sense that we’re immersed in a sort of alien territory.
What are some things you bought in America on tour here?
Last time we were in the States we bought quite a lot of new gear; I mostly like to look at random percussion instruments. There’s just a bigger range of stuff to choose from in the States. I have a Vox 12-string that I got in America; that’s all I use onstage at the moment. We’re looking for 6-string hollow bodies when we’re over this time.
When you were in America, did you find anything that surprised you?
I was quite surprised how open people are about whether they sell drugs or not.
What American stereotypes have you found to be true or false?
People thinking we’re from England was sort of funny, like how stereotypically no one knows where New Zealand is. In a way, everything is kind of a stereotype in the USA—DJs, gangsters and a general obsession with shopping—but when you scratch under the surface there’s a lot weirder stuff going on and that’s always more interesting...it’s sort of hard to tell what’s what, like a weird dream.
What are you looking forward to most about Culture Collide?
Mostly I’m looking forward to playing; we have a lot of new material and a new percussion player so I’m feeling good to come and play overseas again. I’m looking forward to seeing The Raveonettes, and generally just soaking it up for a few days.
Make sure to catch Ghost Wave in the Taix Champagne room at 10:30am Thursday October 10th, at The Church at 8:00pm Friday October 11th, and at Lot 1 Cafe at 8:10pm Saturday October 12th.