Indietracks interview #22: Alaska


Alaksa are Torben, Christoph, Patrick, Björn and Carsten, and are based in Hamburg, Germany. They released their debut album ‘Nouveau Liberty’ on the influential Marsh-Marigold record label in 2005, and also released an EP ‘Kings of the Class’ on the same label in 1999. The band have dedicated themselves to the fine popsong as a sensitive carrier of beauty and memories. Having said that, Torben’s singing is perhaps reminiscent more of the young Billy Corgan than of Stuart Murdoch or even Nick Drake. Torben has joined us today for a quick interview.

Hi, tell us a little bit about yourselves
We are the band Alaska from Hamburg (as there are several bands with the same name all over the world). We started in 1994 (under the name Mrs. Wallace). In 1999 we signed to Marsh-Marigold Records (Hamburg´s eldest indie-pop label). On stage we present a classical line-up (including drums, bass, two guitars, organs). We were influenced by bands such as The Beatles, all bands from Sarah records, The Cure, Belle & Sebastian, The BMX Bandits, Cinerama, The Delgados etc…

What music are you enjoying at the moment?
At the moment we love to listen to: The Draytones, MGMT, The Morning Benders, Friska Viljor, Guillemots, The Divine Comedy, Cinerama, Get Well Soon, Camera Obscura, Pelle Carlberg, Belle & Sebastian, Eugene McGuiness, The Bishops, Benjamin Gibbard, The Deadly Syndrome, The Delgados, Catatonia etc.

Tell us about an unusual place you’ve played a gig in the past
We once played in the engine’s area of an old fire brigade ship at the Hamburg harbour!

Who are you most looking forward to seeing at the Indietracks festival, and why?
We are really looking forward to seeing The BMX Bandits and Camera Obscura, because we love their music and we are big fans. And of course “Nick Garrie” – no explanation needed 😉

Thanks Torben. And here’s a free MP3 from the band’s 1999 Marsh-Marigold EP: Kings of the Class