(By: Angela McLean)
If you are looking for music that will shake you back into consciousness, look no further than New Zealand’s Broods. The duo, siblings Georgia and Caleb Nott, have crossed the “bridges” from their debut alt-pop album ‘Evergreen’ to a sophomore release, ‘Conscious,’ that embraces new electronic, R&B and stage-ready sounds. Songs like “Mother & Father,” “Free” and “Heartlines,” which are all co-written by the pair, emit raw emotion and passion – traits that carry through to their live performances and are also sure to keep their star on the rise.
RUtv News met up with Broods backstage before their performance at Toronto’s TIME Festival to talk about their new album, incredible fans and touring with Sam Smith.
You recently released your new sophomore album, ‘Conscious.’ How has your sound evolved from your debut album, ‘Evergreen,’ to now?
Caleb: I think it’s just a way higher energy and I think that’s because of us touring a lot and wanting to play music that’s really fun to play. We were not even consciously diverting, but it kind of organically evolved into that.
Your lyrics are very honest and meaningful, making the songs something anyone can relate to in some way. How does it feel to have such a universal and ‘conscious’ connection with your listeners?
Georgia: I think that’s really special. We’re very much into the emotional side of music and how it can completely change your perspective or shed new light on something, especially because that’s how I listen to music. I listen for lyrics and for ways to feel connected to a song, and connecting with our fans through music is the most important part of everything that we do. We truly have amazing fans.
Caleb: We wouldn’t be able to do what we do without them.
What’s your favourite song off of ‘Conscious’ to perform live?
Caleb: “Conscious” is a fun one for me.
Georgia: I really love playing “Couldn’t Believe.” It’s probably my favourite one to play of all time out of any song we’ve written. “Are You Home” is a fun one to play live as well.
“Free” was the album’s lead single, and it’s truly a powerful and independence-promoting song. What inspired it?
Georgia: Well, actually, we were supposed to write a different song.
Caleb: We went into the studio three times and tried three different things to finish this song that we had started and it just wasn’t working. But a lot of people really wanted us to finish it so we changed it up and started writing “Free” and that’s what it’s about!
Georgia: It was a big exaggerated, “I’ll do what I want, thank you!” [laughs]
A fan favourite on the album is “Freak of Nature,” which is a collaboration you did with Tove Lo. How did you meet and how did the song come to be?
Georgia: We were kind of doing the same festivals last summer and we did a side show with her and just got to know each other a little bit. Then, at Osheaga, a festival in Canada, we decided to do “Freak of Nature” together. I showed her the song, which Caleb and I wrote quite a long time ago, and she loved it and connected with it. She wrote that second verse and recorded it on the road and sent it back to me and I was like, “Whoa!”
In 2014, you had the amazing opportunity to tour with Sam Smith across the United States and Canada. What was it like touring with him?
Caleb: His whole band is so awesome and so nice and we got to actually hang out all the time as well, which was nice because with some of the other supports we’ve done we have kept quite separate. But this one was a lot of fun.
Georgia: I think it was a very memorable tour for us because it was quite a long one as well. It really sticks out and we’ll remember it forever.
Unfortunately you didn’t get to play the Toronto stop on that tour because it got cancelled due to Sam being sick!
Georgia: I remember that. I also remember actually using it to go and look around Toronto! It sucked because I was like yay, I get to go explore, but I still wanted to play.
After TIME Festival, you continue out on the road for your headlining Conscious Tour. What can fans expect from these shows?
Georgia: It’s been really cool. This new album has so much more energy and our show in turn has so much more energy. It’s a really fun set to play and the crowd’s responses have been awesome. It’s just really cool to bring our music over to the other side of the world from where we come from and have people really like what we do! You’ll be in this place where you’ll think, I didn’t even think I’d ever come here and now I’m playing my music here.
What are some of your tour must-haves?
Caleb: A PlayStation is essential. Also, I think just the people we have on our tour are essential to us. Sometimes it’s taken us quite a long time to find that right person for the job, so you don’t want to tour without them anymore.
Georgia: It’s like a family. Caleb and I are siblings and our cousin drums for us and we have a lot of Kiwis on the touring crew.
After this round of touring wraps up, what’s next for Broods?
Caleb: Touring, a bit more touring, some more touring, Christmas Day and then more touring.
Thank you, Broods! The Conscious Tour continues across the United States until September 3. Visit broodsmusic.com for the latest.