RÜFÜS DU SOL stand up for DJs, detail their friendship with Bob Moses and explain the remix of their album Solace ahead of two-night stay at Red Rocks
Red Rocks Amphitheatre | October 3-4
By Franz Hilberath
“You’re there for the experience — the surprise. You’re there because you don’t want to know what they’re going to play.”
Electronic music often deals with the misconception that its artists just “press buttons,” but ask Tyrone Lindqvist, lead singer of RÜFÜS DU SOL, and he’ll explain that he doesn’t feel remotely jaded about how a DJ chooses to tell their story.
EDM’s influence is all but undeniable in today’s music, especially in the state of Colorado where electronic acts now routinely book sell-outs all over the Front Range. Yet there still remains generations of listeners who can’t relate to the concept of music that’s being created, and performed live, with the use of a computer.
One act transcending this critique of producers is the Australian trio, RÜFÜS DU SOL. The group has gripped listeners around the world with its spellbinding method of storytelling, which fuses lush and emotive production with its own live band act. Lindqvist provides vocals on-record and on stage, where bandmates Jon George (keys) and James Hunt (drums) play and sing in support. The product has been something of a ‘missing-link’ for this generational gap, and the group has rightfully found mass acclaim. Despite its transcendent style, however, the band members are still huge fans of fellow electronic acts who maybe don’t feel the need to use physical instruments while performing.
“In their hearts [DJs] just want to tell a different story,” Lindqvist explained, during a recent interview with The Marquee before the group’s headlining gig at Lollapalooza in August. “There’s something really enticing about that. We definitely draw influence from both.”
This influence is apparent in each of the group’s three studio albums (Atlas, Bloom, and 2018’s Solace), indie-alternative projects that flaunt real, live vocals and instruments but rely largely on their electronic production backbone to convey the true narrative and feeling. This style and preference comes from each of its band members, all of which listen to EDM regularly and have even been known to drop in for a DJ set now and again.
The group’s success as producers has made them revered members of an electronic artist circle they’ve long admired, and granted their aspirations to hear other people’s interpretation, or “spin,” on their music. On both Atlas and Bloom, the group released breathtaking reworks from longtime collaborators and friends, but with its newfound success, they were able to expand their ability to act as global curators on the latest album.
“I guess that’s the joy of [the success of Solace], Lindqvist said, laughing. “There was a few more responses as opposed to an ignored email”.
Not only has RÜFÜS DU SOL’s success earned them cosigns from peers in the form of remixes, but it’s also brought them closer together as friends. One band Lindqvist recalls being an early inspiration and favorite was Bob Moses, whose album Days Gone By was played “on repeat” during the first few Rüfüs tours. As both groups found mass success, they began touring internationally together and the relationship grew from there.
This month the Canadian-duo of Tom Howie and Jimmy Vallance will return to support RÜFÜS DU SOL, this time during its two-night stay at Red Rocks.
“They’re just the nicest guys and so talented,” said Lindqvist of Bob Moses. “When you’re playing big shows like Red Rocks, it’s like, ‘Who are we going to hang out with, who do we want to watch?’ Those guys were an easy choice.”
Having friendly company will likely lessen the nerves of playing a momentous doubleheader at the famed venue, which Lindqvist admits he still gets caught up in even after years of touring and playing big gigs. While the group has headlined, and sold-out, venues like the Brooklyn Mirage, Bayfront Park and L.A.’s Greek Theater, the magic of having thousands singing back to you is still not lost on them.
“You’re so overwhelmed by the spectacle of the venue and the amount of people, it kind of injects a new shade to [the music]. When you hear that many people sing a song, you’re hearing it for the first time.”
The newest tunes being imbued by these massive shows are that of the Solace catalog, which the group has been touring in support of for the last year. While much of the trio’s past projects featured emotional narratives and themes, this new body of work described a more heartfelt and personal story than ever before. This largely comes from how the album was put together, which included living in the U.S. for the first time. Though their stay in California, which included “regular” trips to Joshua Tree, Death Valley and Yosemite, helped inspire the trio, the time spent “obsessing” over the project led to Tyrone, Jon, and James neglecting their personal lives and relationships.
“Me and the guys have spent the last 10 years of our lives with our first priority being the band… it was the only serious, long-lasting relationship that we’ve had,” said Lindqvist, describing the band’s struggle of finding balance between the studio and their personal lives. “I hope we don’t need to do that again. I hope that [for the next album]we can be in the studio and obsess over the music, then leave and obsess over other parts of our lives like our family and friends.”
In an effort that didn’t require them to return to the studio, the group also released the Solace Remixed album in early September. The 18-track project boasts a staggering list of collaborators, featuring world-class acts like Hot Since 82, Justin Martin and Will Clarke. The group hopes, Lindqvist said, that this body of work helps to show just how much a producer can change or enhance the experience with their own production style.
“You resonate with elements of their interpretation. You also get a good idea of where it could live,” Lindqvist said. “When they manage to do that, it’s really exciting. That element of surprise, not knowing what you’re going to get and trusting the artists themselves in the big picture of what they’re creating.”
Red Rocks Amphitheatre | October 3-4
Go If You Dig:
- Jai Wolf