Shelter were the third support act to join Erasure on the UK and European leg of The Violet Flame Tour and we caught up with them to find out how the Erasure tour experience treated them…
Can you remember where you were and what you were doing when you heard that you were going to be touring with Erasure, and how did you react?
Rob: I was on the train coming back from London in the quiet carriage when Mark rang me to tell me the news. I thought it was a wind up and told him to call me back later!
How did you feel before you stepped onto the stage for the first show in the tour?
Very proud of what we had accomplished, very apprehensive and so excited to be getting out on stage.
How did you feel when you came off the stage?
Fierce! The crowd were buzzing and gave us a great reception. You go through lots of emotions but all positive…
How have the Erasure audiences been for you?
Incredible. We’ve had standing ovations, cheers and rapturous applause at every gig and met loads of amazing people after the shows for photos and to sign CDs. The audiences have been so open minded and we felt really welcomed.
For anyone who hasn’t been able to see you, what’s your show like?
We are trying to take people of a retro electro journey from the early 80s to the current chart sounds. We interact with the audience and have fun.
For anyone who doesn’t know you, which one song would you make them listen to ‘get’ what you’re about?
Our new single ‘Neva Luv U More’ but if you fancy something more 80s-retro then our previous single ‘Fierce’. Both tracks are taken from our new album ‘Emerge’ which we completed and released just before we joined Erasure on The Violet Flame tour.
Have you been watching Erasure’s performances?
Yes. We watched them in Cardiff before we joined the tour and then we’ve been sneaking out to watch the show from the back of the concert halls. We are huge fans!
What’s your favourite Erasure song from the tour?
Vince has done some amazing new remixes, such as the reworking of ‘Ship of Fools’. We love them all, especially ‘Sacred’ and ‘Dead of Night’ from The Violet Flame album but they’re all awesome.
Have you abused your Access All Areas privileges to go into places you shouldn’t have gone?
No. We’ve got lost a few times in the basements trying to get from the back of the stage to the back of the theatre though!
What’s on your rider?
Popcorn Catering have been amazing providing fantastic meals each night so we don’t need anything. They’ve been putting plenty of water, fruit, chocolate and beer in the dressing room for us. What more could we really want?
What was it like when you first met Vince and Andy, and what did you talk about?
We’d met Andy before when he came to Wales to record the ‘iPop’ album with us. Vince invited us up to meet him after the show in the Manchester Apollo and Andy was there too. Vince talked us through all his favourite German hotspots so we knew where to make a b-line for in each city. It’s been great to meet them both. They both work so hard.
What’s the worst thing about being the support act?
Choosing which 30 minutes of songs to play. We only have 30 minutes to make an impression so only the up-tempo tracks made the set. Also how fast the tour goes by, the eight dates flew by!
And the best thing?
Being welcomed into the Erasure ‘family’ and feeling part of a team. The standing ovations and hearing and seeing the crowd clap and sing along, laugh with us, and enjoy the show. We love doing this so much!
How are you travelling from show to show?
We’re driving. Just under 2000 miles so far. It was the only real option for us because of the distance between venues throughout Germany and Denmark and the amount of gear we need to bring.
On a scale of one to ten, how much fun did you have?
10 billion-zillion. It’s awesome to be living the dream!
What’s happening for you next, when you finish your dates with Erasure?
We already have a few festival dates lined up for 2015. We have plans to release our Andy Bell collaboration album ‘iPop’ on CD in February and a Frankmusik collaboration single ‘With U’ in the summer, but there are lots of other things taking shape.
We also want to say a huge thanks to Erasure and their management for believing in us, and to the crowds for making us feel so welcome in each city.