Melbourne's finest genre-busting, multi-platinum collective The Cat Empire have announced their biggest world tour to date, which will see them play almost 70 shows across three continents, including nine U.S. dates, in celebration of the release of their fifth studio album Steal The Light.
Over the course of a decade, the band has gained an incredible international reputation, and has established themselves as one of Australia's most unique musical exports.
When they jumped on a plane to the USA for their first overseas engagement in 2002 it was the first time some band members had cause for a passport. They have subsequently toured all over the world, performing almost 950 shows including headlining some of the worlds most prestigious festivals, and playing on entertainment shows such as Letterman and Leno. With an outstanding new record and a live show to match, 2013 is set be another great year for The Cat Empire.
"When we started out," says The Cat Empire vocalist and trumpeter Harry Angus, "we were jazz musicians, but we wanted to play music that spoke to the whole world. I think with this record we've really come full circle, and we’re really embracing that concept again."
The Steal The Light World Tour will get underway in North America in July, with the band headlining Canadian festivals and hitting the hot spots of the USA. The band will be supported by Blackalicious, as well as Australia’s own Tinpan Orange on some North American dates.
South America is in the bands sights this year for the first time following a huge online drive from fans in Rio, Sao Paulo and Buenes Aires who took it upon themselves to lobby the band for shows via pledge site Queremos. With over 500 fans pledging their attendance in less then one week, The Cat Empire re-routed their tour to respond to the demand, adding more cities each week as South Americans catch on and join the lobby group.
The band will be back in Australia in September to do a run through their favourite theatres, with special guests Hiatus Kaiyote sharing the stage, as well as The Empire Horns and new addition to the entertainment troupe - Lenny and The Ela Dancers – 4 amazing dancers to get the rooms moving.
The Cat Empire will be stepping up in venue sizes across Europe in October 2013, with London’s Brixton Academy set to sell out, and the band moving on from multiple nights in Amsterdam’s Paradiso to the famed Heineken Music Hall. With Melbourne band FLAP! opening all European shows, the boys are excited to get back to Barcelona for the first time since 2004. No doubt this announcement to follow next week will please the legion of Spaniards who have taken to bussing across the border into France en-masse in recent years in order to get to see the band.
The band's first single from the new album, "Brighter Than Gold," is already a crowd favourite, with high rotation on Triple J in Australia, "Mega Hit" status on 3FM in the Netherlands, heat building on it at radio in Germany and Belgium, and dipping into the Dutch iTunes chart in the top #20, peaking at #17 just two weeks after release.
"Brighter Than Gold" hints at great things to come on the new album, Steal The Light, the band's first worldwide independent release. It arrives ten years after they crashed onto the recording scene with a self-titled debut album that was gold in Australia within weeks, platinum two months later, and double platinum a year on from that. Followed by a No. 1 chart entry for the sophomore album Two Shoes in 2005, and 2 more award winning albums after that, there is every indication that The Cat Empire have no intention of slowing down.
"In many ways this record is a return to our original aesthetic, a very simple thing; that the music is for dancing and feeling good. The record and the shows should make people smile, make people dance. That's all we want," muses Angus.
The Steal the Light World Tour goes on sale April 26. Dancing shoes essential.
The Cat Empire U.S. tour dates are:
June 27: Washington, DC - Fillmore
June 28: Philadelphia, PA - World Cafe Live
June 29: New York, NY - Best Buy Theatre
June 30: Boston, MA - House of Blues
July 9: Cleveland, OH - Beachland Ballroom
July 10: Chicago, IL - House of Blues
July 11: Minneapolis, MN – Cedar Culture Center
July 23: Seattle, WA – Neumos
July 24: Portland, OR - Doug Fir Lounge