German psychedelic prog rockers Samsara Blues Experiment are about to embark on their first Australian tour to promote the band’s fourth album One With the Universe, playing Adelaide’s Crown and Anchor on 16th September.
Guitarist / vocalist Christian Peters recently chatted with The Upside News about the record, the upcoming tour and the unique blend of influences that have fed into the Samsara Blues Experiment.
“Back in the day, in 2007 when we started, it was mostly the ‘great bands’ of the seventies, Black Sabbath and such, plus a bunch of stoner ones like Mammatus, Nebula, Colour Haze,” he said. “Over the years there’s been several other influences from sixties acid folk, eighties metal, Indian music (not just Raga, even old Bollywood tunes, seriously), and even wilder stuff like Persian seventies psych pop, music from South America, even Jazz. We all just really love music and are very much open to many different genres. Hans doesn’t like Hip Hop too much though, and I don’t like Reggae music much, but apart from that, it’s pretty much everything. You gotta open your ears and you’ll find a lot of good stuff everywhere.
“Main influences I’d say are Nebula, Mammatus, Black Sabbath, Hendrix, Camel and maybe Ananda Shankar. But like I said everything can be influential. It’s different when you are 16, and when you are 36. In the end we can’t try to sound like anybody else, obviously.”
So with that eclectic mix of sounds, how does the outfit go about putting together a song?
“Mostly someone has a riff or a melody and we start from there. At times we try to come up with something all together, sort of jamming, but also a lot I do myself and offer this to the band. A few times I may have a whole song already in my head, which is actually the easiest way to do something new.”
With more than a decade as a working band, touring is very much about the love of the music.
“We just play music. We don’t put on a silly freakshow with masks and fireworks. It is just music from three nerdy guys. Some people actually really like us just for this… the kind of simplicity, I mean.
“We all like these moments when we manage to really connect with the audience, through our music. What we don’t like is when people stand there helplessly hoping somebodies head may explode, or whatever some people may expect from a rock show these days.”
With One With the Universe released more than a year ago, how have the songs fared over the course of their extensive touring?
“The songs haven’t really changed. I mean there’s often a part for improvisation in our songs, so there is always some sort of little ‘change’ all the time, but apart from that, the songs are the same always. We are German. We like structure,” Christian laughs.
You can catch Christian and the rest of the trio on the evening of Sunday 16th September at the Crown and Anchor with tickets available here, or at any of the Australian/NZ shows listed below.
Written by Matthew Trainor