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TIBASKO Interview: "Why not give a headline show at a fraction of the cost?"
We caught up with flying up-and-comers TIBASKO to chat about their new track 'Freedom (In Ur Mind)', their crazy festival season, and the work they're doing tackling the cost of living crisis with their new tour.
Date published: 17th Nov 2023
One of the fastest rising UK duos, who have already been tipped for greatness by everyone from DJ Mag, Mixmag and Billboard; to industry heavyweights like Pete Tong, Bonobo, Jon Hopkins and more; TIBASKO are on a meteoric path through the industry, and don't look like stopping anytime soon.
Having already crafted a signature style with a genre-bending approach to production; one that touches on everything from the sweeping, cinematic melodies to bold, bouncing breakbeats; the Hertfordshire duo are tearing up every stage they set foot on.
With their aptly titled 'Lady Godiva' UK Headline tour almost here, we decided to catch up with Ken Petalcorin and Andy Bowden of TIBASKO to talk about their new track 'Freedom (In Ur Mind)', their crazy festival season, and the incredible work they're doing tackling the cost of living crisis with their new tour.
Scroll down and check out what they had to say!
(There are still tickets left for TIBASKO's Lady Godiva Tour, right here on Skiddle, in Manchester, Liverpool, and Exeter. Head to the bottom of this page for tickets!)
Hi guys, hope you are well, to start off for those who aren't in the know, could you give us a bit of context on TIBASKO, where you guys come from and the type of music you create?
"Hey, thanks for having us! So we are TIBASKO, an electronic music duo from the mighty Hertfordshire. We make a wide range of electronic music spanning from melodic breaks to upbeat party anthems."
Staying on your music, about a month ago, you released your latest track Freedom (In Ur Mind), despite an October release, it feels like a song built for summer, especially with that euphoric vocal sample, what can you tell us about the creation of track and the reception it’s had both during your sets and further afield?
"Freedom (In Ur Mind) was written whilst at an airport in America during our second tour of the States, we wanted to create something that reflected the places we were going and the sound people love out there.
"It was written to be a feel-good, summertime anthem. We get a lot of inspiration from the places we go to and the vibe of the crowds in different areas around the world, we definitely feel like Freedom reflects the music that the US crowd have admiration for.
"It went down so well in our US sets, we were excited to bring it home and gave it a proper introduction first to Reading and Leeds festival. The reaction it got there gave us the push to release the track and it’s been doing the damage ever since."
It’s such a lush and energetic track, and one thing I love about your releases, especially when they are set amongst each other, is the pure variety in your production. Does this come from a wide cast of inspiration? an innate sense of musical exploration? or is it a mixture of the two?
"100%, we find inspiration in such a wide range of artists and to be able to have the freedom - if you excuse the pun - to be able to release those ranges is amazing.
"We both have a love for classical, cinematic music with composers like Max Richter, Ludovico Einaudi and Hans Zimmer. This can be found in a lot of our early catalog where we explore large sweeping synths and pads that are creating real moments that translate onto a dancefloor.
"Much newer inspirations for us can be found in producers like Ross From Friends, Salute and Bonobo to name just a few."
Now, it’s no surprise that you guys are being touted for big things, but having names, both in people you've just mentioned are inspirations like Bonobo; but also huge acts like DJ Seinfeld, The Blessed Madonna, Jon Hopkins, and HAAi, all singing your praises, has got to give you so much confidence in what you’re doing, no?
"It’s the most amazing thing to get a nod of recognition from those who you look up to so much, giving us the validation that we are doing something right.
"Imposter syndrome is such a big part of any up-and-coming artist's journey. We’ve got so much time and admiration for those who have helped us sculpt our rise so far and it gives us a real drive to do the exact same thing for those who are sending us music to play live or give advice to.
Image: TIBASKO on Facebook
Whilst on being destined for big things, I think anyone who saw you at a festival over the summer would have to agree with such a sentiment. What was the festival/summer season like for you guys? You travelled all over the globe and also made your Glastonbury debut, it must’ve been awesome.
"This year has been our busiest for sure, we’ve played all over Europe supporting Elderbrook on his Little Love Tour, as well as Yotto on his Europe tour too.
"An amazing club run in America was one for the books too, particularly highlighting New York as a show that will stay with us for a while. A huge highlight for us however was, as you say, Glastonbury Festival. We saw a sea of faces who loved our performance and really let us travel down a range of genres and show what we can do behind the decks."
These huge festival sets are obviously incredible as you get exposure to new audiences, but you guys have got your Lady Godiva UK Headline tour coming up in the next couple of weeks, how much are you looking forward for that to get going?
"The Lady Godiva tour has been in the works for such a long time, we laugh about it now but it's one of those things that’s always been ‘months away’ but it has crept up so quickly on us.
"We kick things off on the 17th in Manchester with our good friends Sensu and Junior Simba supporting us and the response from the public has made it so special for us to do our first headline UK tour."
Now, for those who aren't aware, you are doing something truly special with this tour, where all tickets, for every show, are priced at just £5. Making it so that despite the Cost-of-living crisis, everyone can still get out for a quality rave. Could you tell us what drove you to do this, and how you’ve managed to pull it off?
"We need to give a special shout-out to our manager Connor here, he’s the brains behind our monkey brains.
We came together and wanted to do something quite different to shake up the industry. Clubs are struggling, punters are struggling and artists are in turn struggling during this Cost-of-Living crisis.
"In the end, it was a no-brainer, people love a bargain, clubs love people through the door and artists need an audience so why not give them a headline show at a fraction of the cost?"
The name of the tour show is Lady Govida, cockney rhyming slang for a fiver, could you give us a bit of background on that story, and where it came from, as it’s a quality idea to link into what it's all about?
"So I actually pitched the idea to my Dad, whilst we had a beer in the garden, of a tour based around five-pound tickets and we were wanting a name/theme for the tour.
"Without much hesitation, he mentioned Lady Godiva which made so much sense.
"For those who don’t know Lady Godiva is remembered from the 13th century for protesting the rising tax rates in Coventry by riding a horse around the town naked, and more well known for her mention in Queen’s hit ‘Don’t Stop Me Now’.
"This ties in so perfectly as this is what we are aiming to do by restricting ticket prices, it’s an active protest against the financial troubles that people are having at the moment."
Image: Gary Brown
I’ve seen in some past interviews you have done that you were working on how to best translate all your music into a vibrant live show, DJing is obviously your bread and butter, but I've always loved when acts like yourselves make that jump over. Is that something you guys are still working on?
For sure, we’ve always had a dream of performing live, I think a lot of the music we make can translate so nicely to live performance.
"We love the energy a live performance can give, whilst also showcasing a completely unique perspective of your own music. So it’s definitely next on our to-do list once the tour is said and done.
"One great live show I continue to go back to is Prospa’s live Boiler Room set from AVA festival in 2022."
Now just to finish off, you’ve obviously got the tour coming to close off the year, but what is 2024 looking like for you guys, any big plans, or are you keeping things under wraps for now?
"Music, music, music.
"We’ve had our heads down in the studio these last few months and are making the best music we’ve ever made. It's very exciting for us to have a chance to work with some amazing vocalists and producers that’ll feature on some 2024 releases, so have a look out for that.
"Other than that we have a jam-packed tour schedule across the world so hopefully everyone can get a chance to come and see us in the near future."
If you want to get on the TIBASKO Train, then do not fear, as there are still tickets left for a few dates on their Lady Godiva Tour, right here on Skiddle; and as mentioned, all tickets are just £5! Find them below:
To find out more on TIBASKO, visit their event page on Skiddle by clicking, or tapping - HERE
TIBASKO will also be joining Chaos In The CBD and Move D for a huge NYE bash in Bristol, find out more information, and grab your tickets, by visiting the event page on Skiddle, by clicking or tapping - HERE
Check out our What's On Guide to discover even more rowdy raves and sweaty gigs taking place over the coming weeks and months. For festivals, lifestyle events and more, head on over to our Things To Do page or be inspired by the event selections on our Inspire Me page.