AN INTERVIEW: MOSS

Moss is playing this weekend’s Culture Collide fest in Los Angeles. I’ve written about this Dutch band before, who give a unique spin on British-influenced indie rock.

In honor of them coming to America, we had a really short and illuminating interview with Jasper from the band.

They play Friday at 9pm (The Echoplex) and Saturday at 7pm (Origami Records).

SOP: Tell us a bit about your newest album, which came out earlier this year. Where can fans in the US find it?

MOSS: It’s called Ornaments and is still only available in Europe. Fans in the U.S. can find it at Amazon or through import.

SOP: Give us five words to describe your sound.

M: Delay, reverb, guitars, drums, melody

SOP: What brings you to Los Angeles? Have you played the US before? When and where are your gigs during Culture Collide?

M: We’re coming to LA for the festival and to visit our friends from the London Police. We’ve played CMJ in NYC two years ago. We really enjoyed that. We play the Echoplex on Friday and we’ll do an instore at Origami Records on Saturday

SOP: What’s been your best experience at a gig? The worst one?

M: Best experience was the Lowlands festival in the Netherlands. The weather, the people, and the atmosphere were all great. The worst one was in Scotland where we played at a festival in the winter. Outside. We were all freezing and almost unable to play our instruments.

SOP: How will you deem this trip to the States a success? No arrests? You get to eat the best burrito of your life? Something else?

M: New jeans and guitars for everyone in the band.

SOP: Who are some bands from back home you’d recommend to readers?

M: Alamo Race Track, Jacco Gardner, The Secret Love Parade, Lola Kite, Eklin, zZz (Lola Kite is an excellent band -Ed.)


THE MONDAY 5: CULTURE COLLIDE

As a fan of bands from all over, Filter’s Culture Collide fest seems like an event tailored to me. Over four days, a diverse selection of international up-and-comers play gigs throughout venues in the neighborhoods of Echo Park and Silver Lake. Some of the acts are big enough to anchor their own tours – like The Wombats and Of Montreal, and others have barely been noticed outside of their home countries, like Coldair (Poland) and The Moog (Hungary).

But that’s why fests like these are great. You drop a nominal amount of money (in this case it’s $20) and get to see as much music as you like, with well-known acts sandwiched together with obscure names.

In years past Culture Collide has brought some of my favorite international bands to the west coast, including Hello Saferide (Sweden), Harrys Gym (Norway), Casiokids (Norway), De Staat (the Netherlands), and For a Minor Reflection (Iceland). This year’s lineup (the third one, I think) is the probably the best one yet, featuring Moss (the Netherlands), Go Back to the Zoo (the Netherlands), Niki & the Dove (Sweden), The Wombats (UK), and Blood Red Shoes (UK).

Here’s the full schedule.

While the fest has gotten better over the years, it could use some improvement, namely with the amount of bands playing from Mexico and other Latin American countries. With the glut of quality indie bands coming from south of the border, as well as the city’s high Latino population, this would seem like a no-brainer. Oh, and also the fact that Filter has a Mexican-focused site.

Today’s (err, um, tonight’s, since this post is really, really late) 5 are those bands that I’m most excited to see, one of which was amazing just last night in Santa Ana.


Blood Red Shoes play Thursday at 10:30pm (Taix Champagne Room).

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THE MONDAY 5: BENELUX

Bettie Serveert

I’ve been real excited to do this one for awhile. Benelux, the countries of Belgium, the Netherlands, and Luxembourg, share plenty of economic and cultural ties. It was their union with West Germany, France, and Italy in 1951 that led to what is the European Union today. They also have some really good bands who will probably never set foot on these shores.

During my time working in music, I had the chance to work with bands from all over the world, with most of them were looking to build a following in North America. For certain countries it was easier, like the UK, Australia, and the Nordic nations. Between the cultural cache and the large amount of monetary support that the respective governments offer artists, many will end up with an important head start. Norway and Iceland are particularly generous to the arts.

The Benelux countries have some guys who have garnered a fair amount of success on this side of the Atlantic including Golden Earring (“Radar Love,” anyone?), The Ex, Bettie Serveert, Hooverphonic, and K’s Choice. But I’m here to dig a little deeper.

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