Skaburbian Collective
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Skaburbian Collective

Luleå, Norrbotten, Sweden | INDIE

Luleå, Norrbotten, Sweden | INDIE
Band Rock Reggae

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"Succé för Skaburbian Collective"

Från solindränkt reggae till ångestfylld electronica. När Kirunafestivalens första afton kom igång var det två konsertattraktioner från Luleå som slogs om publikens intresse, samtidigt som kvällssolen flödade över gruvstaden.

Skaburbian Collective lockade hundratals av unga festivalbesökare till Cityscenen. Luleås löst hållna reggaekollektiv har blivit en imponerande tajt rytmmaskin i livesammanhang. Deras gungande, partyglada baktakter fick en överväldigande respons av fansen närmast scenen.

Bandets ryktbarhet har stärkts via internet och de alltmer frekventa konsertbesöken runtom i Norrbotten. Många i publiken kunde utan problem följa med i Kristofer Börlins allsångsvänliga och livsbejakande refränger, medan brodern Johans briljerade med wahwah-förstärkta gitarrslingor.

Samtidigt, inför en entusiastisk men desto glesare publik på den mindre Klubbscenen, stod soloartisten Mother of the forest (Erik Hilding Lahti) och vajade fram och tillbaka bakom synthar, laptop och förprogrammerade rytmer.

Luleåsonen Lahti som introverta skogselectronica, komplett med förtvivlade, ibland gastkramande sånginsatser, är löftesrik men spelningen var på tok för kort för att få ett mer uttömmande omdöme än så.

Av Nils Johansson - NSD


"Skaburbian Collective: Sunny Sounds From A Place Where The Sun Never Sets"

There are quite a few music-styles that come to one's mind thinking of Scandinavia. But to be honest: Reggae would not be the first choice. But from up North in Lulea, close to the polar circle, where the winters are long and cold, that's where the band "Skaburban Collective" comes from. Five guys that keep the legacy of Bob Marley & Co. alive. Very alive to be honest.

As far as we can remember, we've never heard of a Swedish band playing ska and reggae. Did you have any media coming up so far to talk to you or write about you, so far?

We do have some plans of doing a couple of music videos and been in contact with a production company. At first we aimed to have a music video out last fall but due to different circumstances we didn’t. New plans are set and we’re hoping to have at least one out until the summer.

As I read you were founded 10 years ago. How did you find together?

Skaburbian consists of two pairs of brothers and a close friend from way back. We basically grew up together, but creating music and playing together was more of a coincidence. Back in 2003 we were sitting in my backyard with an idea, somewhat influenced by a couple of beers and the midnight sun, of making hardcore music. I couldn’t say that we were especially synchronized at that moment and the guy holding the guitar tended to get stuck in a back rhythm. After a couple of minutes the rest of us also fell into to the back rhythm and lyrics were improvised. As the midnight sun smiled back on us, shining even stronger that late night and early morning, we all looked at each other, realizing that we had stumbled on a missing piece of a puzzle that was going to lead us somewhere.

Must have been at a very early stage?

It was. Back then, it was all about Rock and Hardcore up here. When we first let people hear our early recordings we got a huge response and shows were almost booked immediately. The first gig we did was at a festival in our hometown a couple of weeks after we sat down together that first night. After that our music was spread from hand to hand in our greater region and show offerings started to come our way. Still today there aren’t any specific venues up north, in Sweden, for our kind of music but as we normally attract large crowds we get offers to play from all over.

Can you make a living from your music?

Until today's day and age, we can count the number of times, using a couple of fingers, when we´ve been trying to get gigs our self. We´ve always been contacted and asked to perform and if it has been an interesting show and offer we have accepted. We don´t do that that many shows per year but in periods we can (moneywise) make a living of our music. In another perspective one could say that we live within the constant creation process that becomes what u guys and others can listen to, and making music has for becoming a way of living. Music is what gives us energy to live and can that kind of living generate money for bills etc. It's welcome, but it has never been a goal for us. We love what we do and going to continue doing music, whether or not it's money in it.

By the way: who actually belongs to the band and where are you from?

Kristofer (Voc. &guit., 30 years), me, Jonas (Voc.&perc., 30 years), Fredrik (Drums & perc., 30 years), Johan T (Bass, 30 years), Johan B (Guitar, 29 years). Were all from a town called Luleå up north in Sweden, close to the polar circle. With almost complete darkness wintertime and midnight-sun during midsummer-times. Our music holds the great contrasts together and brings light all year round.

What was the reason for you to start as a reggae band?

See answer above...

I'm not too sure, but I reckon this to be quite exotic in northern Scandinavia, isn't it?

It is. It´s not that many bands up here playing this kind of music. When we started to play people showed a big interest, coming in big numbers to our shows and our music got spread around a lot.

Is there a market for your music, like festivals, venues?

There is a market for us as people tend to like what we do up hear as well as rest of Sweden. We have been playing both festival and venues since we started doing shows. We haven't been playing that many festivals down south, but hoping to do that in coming years.

How, in general can be described the reggae/ska-music scene in Sweden (Scandinavia)?

In the last couple of years the reggae and ska scene has developed pretty much especially down south in Sweden. There are now several acts that have become quite big in Sweden. This genre has started to become an often appearing element in greater festivals in the last couple of years. Our music is a little bit different than most of the Swedish acts in our genre. We tend to blend both Reggae and Ska, as well as many other pieces taken from several genres. As being as non-consistent as we are we also - World Music Magazine


"Get to know Skaburbian Collective"

Skaburbian Collective is an international reggae/rock band from Luleå, Sweden, performing original songs with strong melodies planted on a solid foundation. Skaburbian Collective uses influences from rock, metal, reggae and ska to produce a unique sound with an explicit roughness. We asked the band a few questions to get to know the up-and-coming Swedish sensations a little better. You can find Skaburbian Collective's music above in the videos.

What inspired you to choose the band name "Skaburbian Collective?"

"This is a question that we've gotten a lot of times. I guess it's that way when you choose an odd name. It's actually a combination of words. We played Ska music in the beginning and we are from the suburbs = Skaburbian. We added Collective mainly because in the beginning we were more of a collective than a band. When we started the band it wasn't a band, it was just friends playing music together. We started out by playing together at parties and ended up recording a demo without any further thoughts about it. The response how ever, was huge. Besides that we realized that having a unique band name is a huge opportunity."

Do you mainly draw influence from Swedish bands, or are you inspired by U.S. bands as well? What are some examples of bands you try to emulate?

"We,ve just recently realized that we share a sound with many U.S Reggae Rock bands such as SOJA, Rebelution and Tribal Seeds. That was never our intention. We did however listen to some Slightly Stoopid and Sublime in the beginning and that might have have affected our sound but I guess why we share the sound is because we have the same background as many U.S Reggae Rock bands, we are rock, punk and metal musicians playing reggae. Influences is a complex question since we all draw influences from totally different bands and styles. Kristofer(Vocals and Guitar) draws influences from rock and folk music, Fredrik(Drums) is in to metal and hardcore, Jonas(Vocals and Percussion) is influenced by world music. Johan T(bass) is a fan of 70's rock and punk and Johan B(lead guitar) is in to blues. I guess that's why we attract such a wide audience."

Have you ever toured in the United States? Do you ever plan to?

"We haven't toured the U.S but we are definitely planning on it. We're sure that our music would be appreciated there and we are noticing a growing fan base over there. It would be awesome to do a US tour and hopefully we can make it happen in 2014."

How popular is the Rock/Reggae genre in Sweden?

"The Reggae Rock genre in Sweden could be summarized in to one band: Skaburbian Collective. However the Roots Reggae scene is growing and that is drawing an increased attention to us."

What has been the greatest accomplishment of Skaburbian Collective so far?

"I guess our biggest accomplishment so far was a gig that we did this summer at the Öland Roots festival. It's the biggest Reggae festival in Sweden and we gathered a huge crowd, It was an amazing gig."

Do you have any big plans for the near future?

"We have a plan for releasing an album in the near future and we are starting to record it this fall. Our fans has been waiting for some time now and feels great to give them what they are waiting for. The approach will be a little different than our previous albums and we will work more with arrangements and production. Our previous recordings have all been live recordings in the studio but this time we will be focusing more on overdubs and vocal harmonies. We will finalize the songs in the studio, not during rehearsals. We have set up our own recording facilities and that makes us less time dependent and lets us take the time a song needs. There's no studio rate ticking and that will make us more relaxed in the studio."

Are you currently signed? Are you looking to be signed?

"We are not signed currently. All our albums has been released on our own label and that has been a great experiece but we are always open for any interesting record deals, especially in the U.S." - Bandoozi


Discography

Resurrection - Album (2007)
In Memory of Numerous Atrocities - Album (2009)
Skaburbian Collective - Album (2009)
Products in a Free World - Album (2010)
Tonight - Single (2013)
For You - Single (2013)
J.S#7 - Single (2013)

Top-3 songs on Spotify:
Flow - 1.975.821 plays
Whaea - 1.599.375 plays
Little girl - 1.071.390 plays

Photos

Bio

Established in 2003, on the basis of joy, independence, self-reliance and free spirit, Skaburbian Collective began as a large group of friends, with no clear nucleus, who would meet at any given chance to make music. Members resided all over Sweden, as well as in Holland and the UK, but the base of operations was set in the suburban village of Sunderbyn, a couple of miles from their hometown Lule책

Within a couple of years the Collective had developed into a steady group of members and their performances were attracting larger and larger crowds in Lule책. In 2007 they recorded their first album, maintaining the nerve of their live performances by performing together in the studio, and thus completed the entire album in a mere two days. Staying true to their core principle of independence, they released the album on their own label.

Between 2008 and 2012 they recorded and released two more albums in a similar fashion and began playing larger festivals in Scandinavia. Meanwhile, the breakthrough of net-based music platforms gave the band the possibility to reach out to a much larger audience and they soon found themselves expanding from a large Scandinavian fan base to a worldwide underground fan base. Show requests began pouring in from all over the world. On Spotify, the band still gets more than 100 000 plays per month. Their top-3-songs alone have been played more than 4 000 000 times.

The band attributes its popularity to their entertaining live performances and their focus on writing strong, joyous melodies. Their goal has always been to bring love and happiness into as many people's lives as possible, which has paid out by giving them a fans between the ages of 3 and 73.

At the moment, the Skaburbian Collective is getting ready for the rising demand around the world. In collaboration with Swedish music commission BD Pop and U.S. label Slimstyle, they're planning the release of a new album and their first tour outside of Scandinavia. The pieces are all falling into place and, finally, the band has the guts and the muscles to take their first steps on the international arena.