The coming year already looks promising for Australia’s music scene, as French band Phoenix returns for a multi-city tour promoting their sixth studio album Ti Amo.
A few months ago, the Grammy Award-winning indie band released two lead singles from the record – J-Boy and title track Ti Amo – much to the delight of fans everywhere. Along with the release, vocalist Thomas Mars hinted at a possible show in Australia.
“It’s always a treat to play there,” he told Music Feeds. “It’s a long time [away], but the good thing is we’ll be ready.
“It takes a while, because we’ve got an idea about how the new songs should be live, and it will come with a whole new set and a whole new stage design.”
Now, he and the rest of the band have followed up on that promise. They’ll be headlining at Sydney City Limits festival on February 24, then will have sideshows in Melbourne on February 26th and Brisbane on February 28.
We talked to Mars recently to learn more about their new album Ti Amo, as well as their upcoming Australian tour.
It’s been nearly 20 years now for Phoenix. What a career! Where do you find the energy and the inspiration to keep innovating so consistently over two decades?
“Every new album has to be different for us to keep our sanity. I would say that the main source of motivation is each other: We want to impress the other three.”
If there has been one seminal Phoenix song for you, which song is it and what do you recall about the writing/recording process for it?
“Not really. Each song is special but there is always one that is new and awkward enough that we know it will be on the album and that one helps us build the rest of the record in an empirical way. J-Boy was that song for Ti Amo.”
Outside of performing, what else are you planning on doing during your Australian visit?
“We have tons to do. We will follow our guide, Deck, the bass player (his wife is Australian and he spends time there.”
Tell us about a couple of relatively unknown French bands we should discover … today!
“Dodi El Sherbini is a French musician in his early 40s that came to music late. We saw him rehearse at the venue that was attached to our studio and we fell in love with his music. We asked him to help us on a few songs (Fior di Latte, Via Veneto). He also directs his own music videos that are little gems. Check out Beau comme Dresde, l’eternel retour, Faut pas rever.”