Published on April 30th, 2012 | Jonny Abrams
New Zealand five-piece Six60 bring their “infectious blend of soul, rock, dubstep and drum & bass” to the UK in May with shows at The Voodoo Rooms in Edinburgh, Whelan’s in Dublin and London venues The HMV Forum and The Garage (please visit www.six60.co.nz for dates and links to buying tickets), so Rocksucker caught up with the band’s front man Matiu Walters for a brief natter about replicating their huge success back home on the world stage. First though check out the official video for “Forever”, which you may obtain a free download of from here…
Was genre-melding the idea all along, or would you say it happened more by accident?
I suppose it was an accident. It is natural to us. Coming from all corners of the country there is a geographical and cultural difference between us. It is a bit of a miracle that our influences and tastes clashed the way they did and didn’t sound like crap.
You must be looking forward to your European and American dates. Have you played shows there before, or will this be a new adventure?
This is a new adventure for us. One that we are both nervous and excited about. Most of all, we can’t wait to get the opportunity to show the world what Six60 are all about.
It seems you have a huge fanbase back home. Other than touring, do you have a battle plan for how to conquer the rest of the world?
We just need to continue what we are doing. What we do is Six60 and we don’t need to try to be anything else. On paper the method would seem pretty simple I think: create quality music that is honest, relatable, natural, classic and inventive, and perform a quality show that is inclusive, unpretentious, and fun.
How long have you guys been going for? How did you get together in the first place?
We met at university. In the early years of study a couple of us moved into number 660 Castle Street and started playing covers. Shows moved from the bed room to the living room, to the back yard and then to the local bars. I would say that Six60 really began in 2009 when the EP was recorded and the band became a five-piece. It’s strange because that feels like yesterday, and now we are closing the first leg of our world tour.
Have you started thinking about the next album yet?
Definitely! We started to think about it as soon as the first album was done; what we could have done differently, better, or not at all. We are also more aware now as time has become a precious commodity. We can’t wait to see what the next album has in store for us and our supporters.
What have been the best gigs you’ve played to date?
There have been a few. I remember a show in Lake Hawea where we played to five people. It was great because we learnt to deal with uncomfortable or undesired situations, something that we will need on our first tour through the Europe and the USA. On top of that, it is always great to go back to Dunedin, and our Homegrown Festival show this year was crazy. 17,000 people partying with us.
Are there any obscure and/or up-and-coming acts that you’d like to recommend or give a shout-out to?
I would say definitely check out this band Six60 hahaha.
Finally, if you were forced to spend the rest of your days in solitary confinement, but were allowed to bring the entire works of five different artists along to tide you over, whose would you choose?
Only five?! Haha. And I’m not sure the boys would agree with me on these, but: Prince, Nick Cave, The Rolling Stones, D’Angelo (please make another album) (Rocksucker says: looks like he is/has!), Kanye West and I’ll throw one more in for good behavior, Lauryn Hill.
Matiu Walters, thank you.
Six60’s eponymous debut album is out now on Massive Entertainment/MGM. Click here for a free download of “Forever”. For more information, including a list of live dates, please visit www.six60.co.nz or the Six60 Facebook page.
Six60 will play the following UK and Ireland dates in May:
8th May – The Voodoo Rooms, Edinburgh
10th May – The HMV Forum, London
11th May – The Garage, London
12th May – The Garage, London
13th May – Whelan’s, Dublin