story + interview / LOGAN BRENDT photos / SIGURD GRUNBERGER
With the release of their second album, Out of Frequency, The Asteroids Galaxy Tour is busy touring North America and giving fans an exciting live listen to the new material. As a pop band complete with a horn section, their sound is as trippy as the band name itself. Being discovered after the recording of their demo and immediately being placed to open for Amy Winehouse years ago, some say they were brought quickly into success. In 2008, their song “Around The Bend” became synonymous at one point with the iPod Touch, as part of the commercial. Singer Mette Lindberg is the ultra glamorous female singer, looking like a modern day Barbarella. As she answers questions during the interview, she sort of sounds like a bird softly whistling in the spring time– unintentionally melodic, but it’s just who she is.
How has the touring been going?
We just released a new album, so this is the first touring with the new songs, the new set up. We’ve been very excited to work with this and to make it work. I think it’s going really well. As long as we put everything in the right place on stage, and all the things are working correctly, I think, “You know, it’s going good”.
Is it difficult to be the only girl in the band, while on tour?
No I don’t think so. We’ve known each other for many years. We’re really good friends. We laugh a lot together. But actually this tour, we’ve brought along a girl [I know], and she’s helping with my hair and makeup. It’s really cool to have one more girl, and then we can be girls together and do girl stuff. [Laughs.]
You had opened up for Amy Winehouse at the beginning of the band’s career. What was that like? Were you really anxious before that show?
Yes. The thing was, it was our first show ever. We had some songs, like five or six songs that we had sent out to a booking agency and they kind of came back saying, “Amy Winehouse is playing, what about you opening?” We’re like, “Yeah sure!” but we need to come together as a band first. We called our friends and rehearsed a few times and then we played 20 minutes. It went really fast. Sometimes you have to jump right into it I guess.
Do you get nervous before shows now?
No. I don’t. Sometimes you get adrenaline and stuff. That’s just exciting I think. Sometimes you can get nervous if it’s live TV or something like that.
Do you have any pre show rituals?
I do some things like shout, “Hey!, Oh!” [shouts]. I shout like that. Sometimes we dance to “Start Me Up” by the Stones. We dance really crazy like in the music video.
What is your favorite song off the new album, Out of Frequency?
All the songs while we work on them. You’ll be in the middle of creating this one, and you go back home and listen and say, “Fuck this is good!”, and you start a new track and go, “Fuck this is good!”, and then you go back like after a month and listen to the other tracks and go, “Oh yeah!”, and you continue like that. I’ve always been thrilled by all of them. It’s kind of difficult to have a favorite.
But if you had to pick one. What is a song you really can’t wait to perform?
You know, I don’t feel like that with anything. I really like the first single, “Heart Attack”. It’s really cool to play that because people know the single and they kind of react to it. I like “Out of Frequency”, the title track of the new album. It’s very beautiful. I like to perform that because the chorus is so massive.
I grew with it. To begin with, when we started, I felt weird when you have to keep taking photos and music videos, because I like to make music and I like to perform. It’s not the same as having to have your picture taken. Now I think it’s quite fun.
You’re a fashion icon to many. How would you describe your style?
I’m not afraid of playing around with things. Laughs. I like it when it’s colorful, playful. I like it to be rock and roll at the same time and street, and feminine. I like to combine that.
Your song “The Golden Age” off the last album, really took off. Who would you have been during the golden age of Hollywood?
I don’t know. Maybe I would have loved to be Frank Sinatra. I don’t know. I think there are many golden ages. In “The Golden Age”, we sing about The Rat Pack and Broadway, and would just imagine to be a part of that— hanging with the cool people, and the style. The whole thing there, not something specific, you know?
Your band name brings up thoughts of space travel and astrology. Are you interested in those topics?
When I was a child, I was very much into outer space, and star signs and the pyramids, and how it was built with the stars and stuff. I think that’s really interesting. For us, the name sounds like a journey, but it’s not all about space and stuff for us. It can mean a lot of things. [We just thought it was a great name.]
What is your sun sign?
What do you think is the best thing about being a female in the music industry?
There are not that many bands with girls as singers. It’s mostly solo artists that are girls. Most bands have male singers. So the category is not huge. The worst and the [best] thing is that there are a lot of men. Laughs.
How many guys hit on you after a show? What has been the worst pick up line that you can remember?
Actually it’s not that massive. I think our fans are really cool. Not hysteric, but there’s a lot of guys— sometimes they shake a little bit when we sign autographs afterwards and they’re like, “Oh my god, oh my god!” But you know, they’re very sweet.
What bands have you been currently listening to?
I got the new Kanye West, Jay-Z album, Watch the Throne. I really like Jay-Z. I think it has some really great stuff on it. It’s very playful and alternative. I also like the Black Keys. I like PJ Harvey’s album, Let England Shake. I really like that album. It’s very dark. The melodies and the chords are genius. It’s a truly amazing album. It’s kind of depressing in a warm way.
What about home do you miss the most when you’re touring?
I really miss cooking in my own kitchen. I like to make stew, like a meat or a lot of vegetables and beans, and cook it for hours. And of course I miss my boyfriend and my family. I’m very close to them, and we kind of live in the same building, so we always hang out and eat together and stuff. I miss that.
Give us some advice that you’ve learned along the way as a pop star.
You need to enjoy your moment. If you’re too busy working it and getting through stuff, then you will forget all the good things. When you’re done, it’ll be like, “Okay, but I missed out on all the fun I did that I used to dream about.” Sometimes I forget I’m on stage. I have a good time with the band when we play together, and sometimes I realize I’m standing in front a lot of people. They sing along and you know, it brings a tear to my eye and makes me smile. It’s difficult to understand— “like what are they doing here?” Then I realize I’m on stage and people know the music. It’s like surreal. It’s such a strange, and beautiful, and scary moment. But, you need to remember to be aware of it. And that’s with life in general. You have to remember to enjoy it.
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