In a time when musicians try their hand at anything to make their music matter, Dave Baxter has definitely sprung his determined spirit effectively. The idea to release debut album ‘Our New Life Above Ground’, for free, seems to be a great idea of tactical wit. Originally from the UK, Dave moved to New Zealand just six months after his birth.
Trying his hand at the violin at just five-years-old, he has grown up alongside music. By the age of ten, the decision to pick up a guitar is proving to be a wise one. Joining bands and playing gigs, he also took up a degree in composition and recording at Waikato’s Wintec. Developing his skills, Baxter was the full backbone behind his debut. Mixing, recording, writing and mastering it.
As he touches down in the UK for a gig at London’s Macbeth, he took the time to sum up his thoughts of increasing success and offer his opinions on what it’s like to be back on home territory. All be it, through an increasingly disruptive phone line.
After a slight delay in time, Dave’s tour manager informs me that things are running a little behind. A short hang-up and ten minute patter around with interview questions later, I ring again (feeling increasing anticipation at the venue).
“Just one second” comes a call from who guy who quickly adapts his voice to that of a woman. Oh no. It’s a woman. “Hi. Dave won’t be long. We’ve just got to the venue. Things are a little hectic.”……”Oh, Here he is now…..Dave…”
Amidst the screeching wheels of moving containers and the odd surge of echoing voice in the background, I’m quickly graced with a somewhat exhausted and presumably jet-lagged Dave Baxter.
Me: “Hi Dave. How’s things. You well?”
Dave: “Hi man. How’s it going? Yeah I’m really good thanks. Infact we just got to the UK. As you can tell, we’re running a little late.”
At this point I have a feeling that was a signal to rush the interview.
Dave continues: “Things are really good. Just got to Britain and I’m looking forward to tonight..”
Me: “So. “Love Love Love is a single that’s doing really well?”
Dave: “Yeah. I mean, it’s been out a year which is weird because its been a slow progression. Its taken a while to get together, but I think people really like it.”
Me: “How would you say your album has been perceived?”
Dave: “I’m not sure how I’d say the album has been perceived, (laughs) but I’m really happy with it. A lot of time and hard work went into it so I’m just glad for it to be out there I guess.”
Me: “How did Avalanche City come about?”
Dave: “Well, it’s basically just me. So it’s my own music. I do all the things involved from writing to producing the album, which is really great.”
Me: “What’s it like to be back in Britain, then?”
Dave: “It’s great to get the opportunity to do things like this. I was born in Britain so it’s good to come back and visit, whilst at the same time, having the same opportunity to play my music. I’m really looking forward to tonight.”
Me: “So then. You’ve got some great songs. What’s next in line for single plans?”
Dave: ”Errmmm, well, ‘Sunset’ is the latest one that’s, ermm, come out. It’s going cooly and we’re shooting a video for it. So, yeah, that’s the latest one.”
Me: “Obviously you’ve just got to the venuve now, how you feeling about tonight’s gig?”
Dave: “I’m really excited for tonight. I love playing in new places. England’s, a place that I’ve always wanted to play live. I’ve played here before but it didn’t feel like a real gig. This is my first kind of public showing so I hope it goes well. If you give me a call later, I can tell you how I got on.
“I don’t really know how I’d sum up the difference in British crowds compared to the crowds back in New Zealand, because I’ve not really played here yet. But yeah, after tonight, maybe I can tell you.”
Me: “Well, I know you’re itching to get on with things so I’ll let you go. All the best for tonight and I hope it goes well.”
Dave: ” Cool. Thanks man. I appreciate it. Speak soon man.” Buzzzzzzz………..
After a call that was very short and concise, it’s apparent that Dave could be the kind of man who likes to keep things undisrupted during his working day. Making the most of his time, it’s clear that he likes a hands on approach to everything he does.
I’m told that the gig went really well. Although there seems to be no initial plans for a return to British soil just yet, Baxter did sneak in a set whilst visiting in Brighton. Now there’s fire in the belly for Baxter, Avalanche City could soon be sliding gracefully into an open armed Britain, with Love, love love…
Interview by Ashley Spink