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Wednesday, May 25, 2016

UK Rockers the Wombats Get Serious on Their New Album

Posted By on Wed, May 25, 2016 at 11:11 AM

click to enlarge MATILDA FINN
  • Matilda Finn
It’s been a busy few months for the Wombats. After the band ended its last tour in January, members have been swamped, but not with writing new music. They’ve all left their hometown of Liverpool and moved to new cities.

The bandmates have relocated to Los Angeles, London and Oslo, Norway.

“We’ve moved out of Liverpool,” says drummer Dan Haggis in a phone interview. “Moving to a new city has taken up most of our time.”

But the distance between them hasn’t weakened the U.K. rock band. On June 2, Wombats arrive at Beachland Ballroom on the first stop of a summer tour across the U.S., just a day before a performance at Cincinnati’s Bunbury music festival.

Haggis says that he sees playing different types of shows as similar to attending them as an audience member; sometimes he prefers to be standing in a small venue, and sometimes he likes to be amongst thousands of attendees.

“I’m really glad we get to play festivals, but I’m also excited we get to play small venues like dive bars. It keeps life interesting,” he says.

For the Wombats’ upcoming tour, the band will hit many cities it’s never visited before, which includes Cleveland. Haggis says he likes traveling to new cities.

“There’s something more exciting about being places I’ve never been,” he says. “I have no idea what to expect.”

Haggis says that the Wombats’ live shows are not a typical rock ‘n’ roll experience (except for one memory of a show in Stockholm, Sweden, which included women throwing their panties and bras onstage during the performance). Instead, the energy usually runs high, but it never gets too absurd.

The band has dates booked all the way through until mid-October, at which point it might start looking at recording new material, according to Haggis. For now, the Wombats will rely on the strength of their 2015 album Glitterbug.

Glitterbug takes a noticeably different approach compared to earlier Wombats albums. Instead of strumming out goofball punk rock rhythms like 2007’s A Guide To Love, Loss, and Desperation and 2011’s This Modern Glitch, the band has toned down the silliness. The new stuff still offers danceable pop rock, just without the humor, off-kilter song covers or kitschy album artwork.

Glitterbug is how we should sound,” says Haggis. “We’ve got a good starting point moving forward. We haven’t really thought about the next album or how it’s going to sound but we’re happy with Glitterbug so if it continues in that vein, we’ll be happy.”

Wombats haven’t figured out their next move after the current tour.

“We want to avoid jumping in to new songs and new music, so it’s been nice to have a break,” says Haggis.

The Wombats, Ottawa, 8 p.m. Thursday, June 2, Beachland Ballroom, 15711 Waterloo Rd., 216-383-1124. Tickets: $18 ADV, $20 DOS,

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