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Courtesy of Cat Roif

Wavves roll in to Columbia

Bassist Stephen Pope talks tours and the newest album.

By Ria Knapp | July 31, 2013

Tags: Concerts Downtown Columbia Music

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Where: Mojo's

When: 8 p.m., Monday

Tickets: $16-$18

You may have just discovered them when they played at Bonnaroo in 2011, or you may have been following them since Nathan Williams started the alternative rock group back in 2008. But since the 2012 release of their latest album, Afraid of Heights, Wavves has been on tour all over the globe -- from Europe to Asia and, soon, Australia. Bassist Stephen Pope settled down for a few minutes to talk to MOVE about their upcoming show at the Mojo's on Monday.

[MOVE]: What has this past year looked like for you guys?

[Stephen Pope]: Well we just got back (to the U.S.). We did an Asian tour and a European tour, and the Asian tour was pretty crazy. We went to Taiwan, Tokyo, Singapore -- and we also spent a week in Thailand. I got really, really bad food poisoning in Thailand, but it was a lot of fun.

[M]: What’s the music scene like over there?

[SP]: Well supposedly it’s not very big, but all the shows we had were really good. We played pretty small clubs and had only about 150 people coming to each show, but people were telling us that was pretty big. When we were in Singapore, that was the only chance we had to play with a local band. I can’t remember the name of the band, but they were really cool. They were a surf band from Singapore. We also played with an Icelandic band that had a really futuristic sound.

[M]: You’re listed under a lot of genres, from alternative to surf rock. How would you describe Wavves’ sound?

[SP]: Whenever somebody asks me that, like if it’s someone my parents are introducing me to, I’ll usually say alternative rock, like the Foo Fighters or Nirvana. But we have a lot of punk influence as well.

[M]: Who do you draw inspiration from when writing new material?

[SP]: Well, especially for this album, I’m listening to a lot of the bands I grew up on, like the Pixies, and (listening to) Weezer helps (inspire) our voices.

[M]: What would you say to aspiring musicians at a college level?

[SP]: Stick to it. At a college level, if you’re a musician you’re probably out chasing your dream. So if that doesn’t work out, school will always be there for you to come back to.

[M]: How do you feel about playing smaller venues like in Columbia?

[SP]: I prefer smaller venues. It’s more intimate with the crowd. Plus you can turn up louder. When you get bigger venues, the sound guys put more restrictions on you because all the sound’s coming out of the PA, so we actually get to turn up loud and have more fun playing (in smaller venues).

[M]: I’m sure we can expect a great show.

[SP]: I hope so. I had a great time the last time I came to Mojo's like five years ago with my last band, so I hope people have a great time when they come to see us.

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