Husky Rescue produced what was for me the album of the year with Country Falls. A beguiling mix of electronica and chilled dance that was sprinkled with magical moments throughout. Singles like Summertime Cowboy, City Lights and New Light Of Tomorrow added further to the ever growing reputation.
We caught up with Marko Nyberg recently to find out how life wasin camp husky at the moment, we found him in a friendly and typically eccentric mood as he talked about touring with Morcheeba, Country Falls and cars….lots and lots about cars in fact!
Iâ€™ve got to start by saying that Country Falls was probably my favourite album of last year, did you realise when you were recording it that you were onto something special?
Thanks a lot. The recording and production of Country Falls was a really special time for me and the album was a chance for me to put all my thoughts and feelings into one place. The fact that people like it is a brilliant bonus.
Have you listened to it yourselves recently, or is it a case of playing them live so many times that itâ€™s the last thing youâ€™d want to hear?
I just today listened to an acoustic version we did for BBC Radio 6 Music. I got excited because it opened a new perspective that allowed me to hear the songs really differently, and the whole live concept opens a possibility to perform in a totally new way to how they sound on the album.
You are one of many brilliant Scandinavian bands that have made a real impression on the British music world in the last few years, is that something that pleases you or do you have a competitive streak in you when it comes to bands a little closer to home?
No ,I feel just as good driving my own car.
Who do you currently rate / dislike from the Scandinavian bands?
I enjoy listening MagnetÂ´s music and one of the most touching experiences for me during this summer was Emiliana TorriniÂ´s concert in Brighton. Thereâ€™s something quiet magical about seeing her perform live and I highly recommend it if you have the chance.
Itâ€™s always mentioned in reviews when it comes to Scandinavian bands, but do you feel the climate and landscape has had a direct influence on your sound?
The contrast between the urban world and raw, natural places has built the right tension for me. But, more than that, producing music has created a real escape from the hectic flow of modern life. Iâ€™ve been trying to tell those compact emotional musical stories first for myself and then to others.
How was the support tour you did with Morcheeba earlier this year?
The band had a really good time touring the UK. Morcheeba crew were really friendly towards us and knew how to party for such old menâ€¦ Iâ€™m joking! There was excellent catering too! Being together as a live band for 9 days straight was a good chance for the band to spend a long time together. The time together made us stronger as a band, weâ€™re a well-oiled unit like the A-Team now!
Do you find you learn anything new about playing live when you support the more established acts that have been touring for years?
ItÂ´s like tuning and customizing a good old Volvo. Trying to get a more compact and solid look but a bit more effective at high speed while keeping a very smooth ride. Or something like that.
The headline tours youâ€™ve done so far seem to have been quite short and predominantly in the south, have you any plans to venture further north and take in more cities?
I hope we have possibilities to travel there. WeÂ´ve really enjoyed touring the UK, hopefully we can check out some more of it next time we tour. Hopefully next year.
Both the artwork on all your sleeves as well as the videos for the singles seem to be very striking and certainly different to the majority of bands is that something you are conscious of and have any involvement in?
We have a group of very talented people around to work with here in Helsinki. Thereâ€™s so much talent around, itâ€™s inspiring! Personally, itâ€™s great to give someone else a chance to come up with their own take on the Husky Rescue sound, either with artwork or with our videos. ItÂ´s also excellent to have such a flexible label like Catskills behind us. Catskills is the beating heart that makes it possible for us to really explore what we can do with our music in all media.
How has it been working on the Catskills label? They are starting to put together a very exciting roster and have released some great albums in the last 18 months, it must be an exciting time down there?
is one of the most exciting labels in the UK for a reason; they are always
changing and adapting their sound and direction to suit the artist they are
working with at that time. Theyâ€™re always experimenting and never repeating
themselves. No artist on Catskills sounds or looks like another, thereâ€™s a
real sense that each artist is allowed to push things as far as they want and
take it to the next level. A real pleasure.
Have you played many festivals this year? How have you been received at them?
We’ve been gathering good experiences from the festivals this summer. Our label has six pairs of Wellingtons and tents for six people ready to go in their office lobby. Rubber boots were something we really needed during the Glastonbury weekend. Most interesting unexpected moment for huskies was in Finland where people had learnt the lyrics completely and were singing along with us. This was up in northern Finland in July surrounded by thousands of mosquitos.
You had some great remixes on your recent single (City Lights) do you have input into who you want to remix your tracks?
Once again a car theme. IÂ´m the proud driver of my Volvo, but Iâ€™m lucky enough to have some great people working in the pit. So the Catskills mechanics pretty much pick the best tuning TYPEers for my car. I trust their choices for remixers, especially the Vector Lovers mix of City Lights which really hits the sweet spot.
Have you started any work on a follow up to Country Falls?
Yes, I have. Thatâ€™s all I can say for now. Itâ€™s gonna be the next logical progression for the Husky Rescue sound. Itâ€™s due for release next summerâ€¦ hopefully.
Do you feel under any pressure in following it up after the critical acclaim of the first album?
Itâ€™s impossible to create something under pressure. I will widen the musical world of Husky Rescue and try to build on the contrasts in mood Iâ€™ve been experimenting with and just produce some music I like. Thatâ€™s all I can do without going mad.
Finally, where do you see Husky Rescue going moving forward, what are your hopes for the band?
I hope the second album will be out during the summer 2006. It would be excellent to play more gigs next summer and get some sun tan other than the usual â€˜Studio Tanâ€™.