On a full European and UK headline tour following the release of their self-titled debut album, Phox stopped by to play Dublin’s Sugar Club as one of the dates.
After being offered crisps and salted chocolate as well as adequate rambling about jazz musicians, we sat down with the Baraboo, Wisconsin natives.
You guys are about to play the Sugar Club, Dublin are you excited?
Zach: Yes! When we walked in they said “Do you wanna project your logo on the back of the stage or a red curtain”… I said red curtain.
You have got to go for the classy option!
Jason: There are nice tables and its classy…It’s cool!
Matt: We have debated whether it is better to play to a seated or a standing audience.
Which do you think is best?
Matteo: It’s 50/50. This has room for both. It’s got that little space at the front.
Jason: If it could be 50/50 exactly, that would be great!
So this is not your first time in Ireland, how was the last time you were here?
Matt: We have only been here one time and we played Electric Picnic, but we were playing at the same time as Hozier.
Jason: Next to a karaoke tent, so it was a little funny.
Zach: That was the muddy one!
Jason: Yeah, we got our rider as soon as we finished playing. So we were there for three or four hours and then when we finished playing our entire rider showed up.
Matt: So we got a bunch of beer! And then we saw Paolo Nutini who we went on tour with as soon as we got home.
I was actually just about to ask you about that! How was the experience of touring with Paolo Nutini? Did you learn anything from watching him every night?
Matt: Yeah that was the first time we had seen him actually playing Electric Picnic in front of like fifty thousand people and he had these amazing psychedelic projections behind him, and he has totally changed his aesthetic and has a really cool new album.
Matteo: There is a wealth of knowledge in that man! He sort of went through the tumultuous pop machine and then came out the other end kind of clear minded and was just like, right I’m gonna do what I love! There is definitely something to admirer there.
Jason: And the fact that he was just so nice as well!
Matt: Yeah he is incredibly nice, and all of his band and crew! Everyone who works for him where all some of the nicest people that we have ever met and they were really genuine and open. It was a really really fun tour.
Jason: I don’t think they can play at anything less than 100%, cause at sound check it would sound just as good as the show. Paolo would just walk on stage and just sound perfect!
Matt: And for us that was our first time playing on those sorts of stages! You know we played the Apollo Theatre, New York and these amazing classic theatres and big rooms. IT was a learning experience for us to learn how to play to that kind of crowd and that kind of room.
And of course after this you are onto the UK and then hitting up mainland Europe, is there anywhere in Europe you are particularly excited to visit?
Jason: We always like Berlin!
Matteo: I’m a little bummed that we will probably only be there for less than a day but I m really excited to go to Vienna cause I was a classical musician first…
A classical musician turned “pop star”!
Jason: YES! (Laughs)
Matteo: Pop something! (Laughs)
Matt: Soft rock star!
Monica has been quoted as saying “If you like Sugared cereal, you’ll like Phox.” What type of sugared cereal would you guys be if you had to be one?
Jason: Oh God! (Laughs)
Matt: Lucky Charms! Do you guys have lucky charms here?
We do but they are very hard to find!
Matt: Oh no they have a leprechaun on them don’t they? Oh God! I take it back!
Jason: Fruity Pebels!
Matt: Yes Fruity Pebels, furious and multi-coloured! And hard to find!
And what is the plan for after the tour then? I know you guys are finishing up in America.
Matt: How much do we want to give away of our secret plans? I like to be cryptic! I just have a hard time being direct!
Matteo: Well we have a little down time. and eh…there are some things!
Jason: Yeah we are gonna do some stuff and… (Laughs)
Zach: We have like six weeks off after the tour.
Matteo: We have our longest break in like a year! So that is going to be really nice.
Matt: I think we will just get the chance to be creative again and re-plan what we are going to do for the next year and take some time to think about a more interesting live show. More dynamic! And then work on some secret video/film project.
Jason: Like Borat! (Laughs)
Matt: That’s it! I can’t believe I just said video/film!
Thanks very much for taking the time out to chat to us! Good luck with the show later.
Matt: No problem. Thank you very much.
Watch the official video for Slow Motion here: