A little over a year ago, Swedish rock band Holograms were gathering momentum at rapid speed.
In a matter of months, the Stockholm four-piece were signed by Brooklyn independent label Captured Tracks, they recorded their self-titled debut and scheduled their first major tour, which would take place in Canada and the U.S.A. The tour was to be the band’s first opportunity to play their synth-driven post-punk songs to a North American audience, but they almost never arrived.
A string of financial problems, which included thieves breaking into their tour van and stealing their equipment during a smaller support tour in Europe, left the band members almost too broke to qualify for a visa to tour in the U.S.
Their North American sojourn seemed doomed to be cancelled, but the band scraped in at the last minute and toured on a shoe-string, sleeping on floors donated by fans to get by.
A little over a year later, Holograms have returned to the U.S. and Canada to promote their second album, Forever, with a tour which will include a show at Vancouver’s Electric Owl on December 15.
From a financial perspective, not a lot has changed for the band since that tense period before their last North American tour. They’re still day-dreaming about the new equipment they wish they could afford. For accommodation on their current tour, they’ll be relying on the kindness of weirdos, who the band joked were the only people willing to let four strange men crash on their floor on a Tuesday.
But singer and bassist Andreas Lagerström says they are more prepared for life on the road this time around.
“Touring the States was our first real big tour we ever did,” he says.
“It felt very new, everything.
“Now it’s easier, it’s a lot easier for us to tour because we know what to expect and how to deal with everything.”
Lagerström says band is also returning with a better live show and new equipment to play songs from their second album, which has a vaster, more dramatic sound than their debut.
Having added another synthesizer to their set-up, he says the band is always tweaking its live show, upgrading its equipment as its budget allows.
“We use two synthesizers now and we used to use one so it sounds a little different,” he says.
“It always evolves really naturally because you play the same songs over and over and over again so it changes gradually.”
Holograms play at Electric Owl on December 15 at 8pm.