There may be a few band names out there that involve “Crystal” and plural nouns, but it’s hard to get confused when it comes to Crystal Fighters. Though formed in London, the band’s adopted home is in Spanish Basque country. They’re inspired by traditional folk music from that region, which gets fused with modern electronic influences to make a sound that’s undeniably their own. After impressing audiences around the world with their debut album Star Of Love, Crystal Fighters have done it again with this year’s triumphant Cave Rave, which they celebrated in August with a party in an actual cave. The quintet is currently on the road in North America, taking its high-octane live show to more conventional venues alongside Portugal. The Man. I called up frontman Sebastian Pringle while the band was on a pre-tour trip back to the Basque country.
How did you get involved with the remixers for the You & I EP that you just put out?
We always try to keep on top of who’s making good stuff and has time. We just reached out to all of them, and our whole crew liked all of the different mixes.
Who are some other new producers that you like?
I like Aquadrop…the names are a bit of a struggle. Thundercat.
How did the actual cave rave go?
It was amazing, yeah. We’re back in the Basque country now, it was absolutely incredible. We had a really amazing turnout, and the most unusual venue, so it was a great time, really good energy. It was an event we’d definitely want to do again.
That was sort of taking off from traditional celebrations in that area, right?
Yeah, but it was different. We invited local bands to play together, bands of our friends we’ve found, and just had a musical event, a musical party to celebrate being alive as a whole. And in the Basque [country], it’s like a really special vibe, which is cool.
You have an amazing live show. What do you want people to get out of the experience?
I think going to a live band performance is an experience where three people or five people or whatever are creating an illusion of the world that has the power to affect your life. That’s entirely possible, and somebody who really loves the band will go out of their way of their normal thing to take in the music.
Right now, you’re one of the top bands merging the rock and dance scenes. Do you see crowds that lean one way or another in different places?
There’s people that like both [types of] music and they don’t have a general approach to music. That’s just how people define the band. It’s the same thing, people can like different types of music and actively want them to mix in one band or one act. I’m hoping we can provide a kind of mix that people will want in their lives.
Between the Basque country and London, having a sense of place has been very important to you. Now you’ve added LA to the mix, after recording Cave Rave there.
Yeah, LA was cool. It was Justin Meldal-Johnsen working [on the album]. We went out there, and we all sort of appreciated the new kind of irony and input in recording an album out there than in Britain. The whole persuasion was eclectic recording locations, LA. That was part of the fun and part of the reason why we went out there. So it had its own impact on the record, and adding other genres to the mix as well.
You’re seeing much more of America this fall than you’ve visited previously. What are you looking forward to exploring the most?
We’re touring with Portugal. The Man. Should be great, they’re a great band and it’s fun for us to be in that position. We’re looking forward to bringing the new material and playing new songs that we hadn’t played last time around. It’s exciting, and we love being over there, so we’re looking forward to hanging out.
Anything else that you want to shout out right now?
Peace and love to everyone, and save the planet if you can.