• Michael Bugeja

INTERVIEW WITH RED ELECTRICK


They started the year all geared up for last March’s release of their latest album Inside You, but it’s safe to say that the album was just one of several other ongoing projects in Red Electrick’s busy schedule. As the new album continues to consolidate the band’s position among the upper echelons of the local music scene, Red Electrick’s Peter Borg took a well-deserved break (a short one, albeit) to speak to MikeBugeja.com about the album, recent events and the band’s upcoming tour in Cyprus, the highlight of which surely will be the band's performance at the Maestro & Friends concert.

What has life for Red Electrick been like since the release of Inside You earlier this year?

We’ve basically been gigging non-stop ever since. Some of the shows this summer have been really great. We were invited to play on the main stage at the Jarocin Festival in Poland, which was definitely a highlight, but we also had some fantastic gigs locally. Playing at Ħondoq by Night in Gozo was amazing, and the Beer Festival, where we played on the main stage for the first time, went down surprisingly well too. We also played at the Delicata and Demajo winefests, the ALS Concert at Aria and a shorter set during Joseph Calleja’s concert in Floriana. I have to say we’re very happy with our live set at the moment, especially because it can be adapted to work in different scenarios.

There's a distinct pop-rock lean and an eclectic musical spread on the new album. What attracted you to go for diversity vs Vine Lady’s relatively more defined sound?

To be honest, we didn’t really think about it. We just went with what came naturally during the song-writing phase, at the end of which we had about 40 songs, which we picked our favourite ones from. Perhaps our next album might be more focused, who knows, but at the time we were working on Inside You, we felt we should take a more open approach. It’s possible that another factor that led to this diversity was the arrival of Robert Spiteri, our drummer, who brought several new techniques to the table, so we were quite enthusiastic to explore areas we hadn’t gone into in the past.

The Maestro & Friends concert will not be your first performance abroad but, featuring names like Aliki and Steve Mercurio, it will certainly be among your biggest overseas performances to date. How did it come about, and what have you got planned for the big night?

Yes, alongside the Jarocin Festival, the concert with Aliki will be among our most significant so far. We had actually done a mini-tour in Cyprus last year, which was related to a PR initiative by the Cyprus Tourism Authority to promote the country in Malta. One of the gigs we played was at Academy 2, where we met Yiannis Hadjiloizou. He fell in love with us and our music and wanted to get involved. He is now working hand in hand with us on all of our international engagements. Yiannis also organizes his own concert, Maestro & Friends, and this year he wanted to have Red Electrick as his main guests, which we obviously feel very honoured by. We’ve put together a tour around the concert, which will see us performing 4 other shows around Cyprus. Yiannis also introduced us to the world-renowned soprano Aliki, who had placed very well in the Britain’s Got Talent show. We collaborated with her on a new song, which should be released in the coming months. As for Steve Mercurio, we got to know him through our participation in the last 2 Joseph Calleja concerts.

With this tour of Cyprus coming up, what are you looking forward to the most as it must surely be another valuable experience for the band?

Performing abroad is always a very satisfying experience, as well as an important aspect of being in a band. It’s an amazing thing to be part of, and the fact you get to travel with your best friends, practically living together, sharing all the laughs, having a buzz doing sound-checks and of course the actual performance… words can’t describe that feeling! We don’t do any of it to become famous, but we would welcome any success. We’re just happy to be travelling as a band, as friends, and getting to perform in different countries. This past year, we’ve already been to Cyprus, Italy and Poland and we’ve got more shows abroad lined up that will hopefully take as far as India!

With four singles already lifted off the new album, should we be expecting a new single soon?

Unfortunately, we’ve been so busy that we didn’t have time to plan for a new release for the summer, and to be honest, we felt we didn’t really need to as our schedule since the album launch has been so jam-packed. That said, we’re planning to release something in November or December, but we’re currently still juggling between two particular tracks off the album for our next single.

What’s next for the band upon your return from Cyprus?

We’re excited to be collaborating with a foreign producer at our very own Railway Studios at the moment. Having already worked with practically all the main producers on the island, we thought we’d try something different and see what a totally new person can bring to the table. He’s also pretty well-connected in Los Angeles, so who knows, that might also bring about new opportunities too!

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