The southern tip of Africa is a world away from big music hubs like New York, London, and Los Angeles, but good music always shows through. So when a duo from Cape Town brought their infectious electronic sets to Ibiza and played them with live instrumentation for the crowd, people quickly took notice.
From then, it’s been seven successful albums for GoldFish and tours around the world. The pair, composed of Dominic Peters and David Poole, has brought a particularly appealing style of electronic to millions of fans around the globe.
We got a chance to speak with Dom and Dave before their show in San Diego on their tour supporting their most recent release, Late Night People.
Can you tell us a bit about your start in music? What sparked your initial interest?
Dom: Both Dave and I started playing music when we were six years old. I think we both just had a natural affinity for it, plus we had super supportive parents. We both went through a slew of different instruments including piano, violin, cello, guitar, sax, drums, and flute (with varying degrees of success) and played in a bunch of different bands.
Then, after school, did degrees in music at the University of Cape Town, which is where we met and formed GoldFish. The rest is history.
What’s the South African music scene like? How did you find transitioning to a more global audience?
The South African music scene is obviously a lot smaller, but the scene is very current and on the cutting edge. I guess in some ways being so far removed geographically means our scene was always hungry to pay attention to what was happening in the rest of the world, but at the same time always putting our own spin on things.
There are some really cool acts crushing it including Black Coffee, Die Antwoord, Kyle Watson, and Ryan Murgatroyd.
So, to be honest, we had an easy time transitioning to the global audience. We spent seven seasons living in Ibiza playing Pacha Ibiza, which was just the time of our lives, plus basically “dance floor university.”
Our first gig at Pacha was opening for Pete Tong and I guess people (and the club!) were pretty shocked to see two dudes on the main floor playing a completely live set. We used to sequence everything live along with playing all the instruments in our show. It was unheard of for that context at the time. From there, we were invited to have a residency at Pacha and things just exploded from there.
Your music is electronic, but it’s a very unique blend that draws from some unusual influences. How did you find your sound? How has it changed over the years?
Living on the tip of Africa definitely shaped our sound and they always say your environment shapes who you are. Cape Town is such a melting pot of cultures from all over the world and Africa that I think we had a pretty unique music upbringing.
I’d love to hear a bit about your new album Late Night People. I’ve heard that it is the longest you’ve spent on an album. What went into it that took so much time?
We were recording this album around the time we decided to move full-time to the U.S.
As anyone who has moved country will tell you, it’s a gnarly thing uprooting your life and moving everything to a new place. Combine that with making an album and things take a little longer. But it worked out great in the end with us doing some really cool collabs that we wouldn’t have been able to do without that extra time. Something about the changes we were going through personally definitely came through in the music, and being out of your comfort zone always brings out your best work.
What’s your favorite track on the album to listen to? What about to play?
We love “These Two Oceans” as it’s about moving from Cape Town to the states. It’s soulful and cinematic and definitely captures our mixed emotions about the excitement of a new frontier whilst missing your home.
Also “No One Has to Know” and ‘Absolute Power” were both fun to make too.. To play live “Talk to Me” really kicks ass and our rework of “Little Lies” by Fleetwood Mac is a great live track.
Can you each tell us something about the other that people should really know about them?
Dave on Dom: Dom can sleep anywhere anytime… and within seconds.
Dom on Dave: Dave can stay awake anytime anywhere and within seconds… ha!
Also he’s an amazing dad and a great inspiration for me one day, if I ever get so lucky.
Do you have any weird road habits or rituals around performances?
Love doing Wim Hof breathing exercises for jetlag and general tour antidote (check it out if you’re interested).
And also tequila… sometimes combined [laughs].
How do you typically discover new music? Any up-and-coming bands you can’t stop listening to?
SoundCloud, Spotify, friends, stuff we have heard at festivals and shows, it’s basically always having your eyes and ears open.
Francis and the Lights are very cool. Diamond Thug who we collaborated with on this album are also great.
Ashe who sings on ‘”No One Has to Know” has an amazing voice and a huge future too.
What’s coming up for Goldfish in 2018?
Touring all over the world, remixes, collabs, and lots of surfing. We’re psyched.
Date & Time:
February 10th, 2018 | 10 PM
526 Market Street
San Diego, CA 92101
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