Kiwi band Sola Rosa is back with a new album after a big overseas tour. Frontman Andrew Spraggon talks ahead of the group's Christchurch show.
He's just back from a successful tour of the United States and about to head back there and to Europe, but Auckland-based Sola Rosa frontman Andrew Spraggon is still "stoked" to be touring his homeland.
The band recently released its fifth studio album - Low and Behold, High and Beyond - and is in the midst of a nine- date tour before heading back overseas to tour the album on the international circuit.
It will be the closest Sola Rosa has come to a national tour in about three years, Spraggon says.
He believes the band is "sounding good" after concentrating on its live show.
"We have a whole lot of new equipment so every single track we do is being reworked. So we had to work out how to use those and then we had to learn the new songs and we had to go out and play them and figure out what's working and what's not, so we were constantly changing things on the road."
Sola Rosa was originally a name used on Spraggon's solo studio productions, but has grown to become a collaborative effort that includes a core band comprising Spraggon's United Kingdom collaborator, Spikey Tee, guitarist Ben White, bassist Matt Short and vocalist Cherie Mathieson.
Continuing this ethos, Low and Behold, High and Beyond includes a variety of guest vocalists including LA Mitchell, Olivier Daysoul and Miles Bonny plus Spikey Tee across 11 fresh tracks, which explore funk, soul and hip-hop terrain.
But it's as a live band that Sola Rosa forged its reputation and Spraggon says playing live remains the main focus.
"You work really hard on an album to get it sounding as good as you can, but the live thing is a completely different bag. So we're just enjoying playing at the moment."
They are also used to playing to tough crowds.
"We had to work at it in some places, but we always got through to them in the end."
"We played a show in downtown LA to a staunch kind of immigrant crowd and they were quite staunch at first, but by the end we had them up dancing and it was a really awesome show. So we seem to be winning them over so we'll keep going at it." Fairfax
Sola Rosa at Dux Live on Thursday. They are also on the lineup for The New World Wine & Food Festival to be held in Hagley Park on December 8 and at the Coromandel Gold festival on December 30 and 31, Whitianga.
WIN WIN WIN
GO has two copies of Sola Rosa's new album, Low and Behold, High and Beyond, to give away. To enter the draw email firstname.lastname@example.org with Sola Energy in the subject line by 5pm on Wednesday, September 5. Winners will be notified.
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