Capital Cities will be spending much of the summer out on tour with Katy Perry. And while it seems like a natural fit — with the two sharing a label and radio airwaves on many of the same formats — Capital Cities’ Ryan Merchant does expect it to be a unique tour for the group.
“We’ve done a lot of festivals where we’ve played for big audiences, but this is different because it’s her specific audience and a very specific demographic, a lot of young females from what I understand. Which, we have young female fans too, but I think it’s going to be more of a challenge to win them over,” Merchant told Billboard.
According to Merchant the band does have some things up their sleeves for playing in arenas in front of Perry’s fan base. “We have a very short set that we’re going to be playing, so we have to jam it all into 35 minutes and it has to be as compelling as possible,” he said. “So we have some new staging that I think is going to help up our game quite a bit.”
Ultimately though he believes it comes down to delivering the most high-impact show you can. “But, at the end of the day, it’s all just about from the moment you get out there, informing the audience what the energy level is going to be,” he said.
One thing Capital Cities likes to do is covers, making them a frequent part of their set. We asked them which one would go over best with Perry’s audience. “I think ‘Staying Alive,’ by the Bee Gees, is always a good fallback because it seems to be one of those songs that crosses generations, everybody knows it,” Merchant said.
If they want to go outside the box he has another song in mind as well. “We do a cover of Pink Floyd ‘Breathe,’ and it has this Tupac sample on it. That’s always a fun one to play,” he said. “It’s a little bit darker so it might not gel with her audience, although she has darker tunes.”
One thing the band will not be doing on the Perry tour is new material, given the brief period they have on stage. But the group is actively writing, said Merchant, “trying to stay creative as much as possible."
While CC are focused on touring, they hope to get new music out in a few ways. “I definitely want to put out some new music, work on some other tunes, and throw it out on the Internet and see what happens just for the fun of it,” he said.
They also want to see how it goes over live. “That’s always been a thing with us, we work on a song, play it live and the live experience informs how we ultimately end up with new songs,” he said. “Maybe in our fall tour we’ll have some new stuff to throw out there.”
Right now the group is still concentrated on songs from the "In A Tidal Wave Of Mystery" album, including the new single “One Minute More.” Merchant gave us a little preview of the upcoming video: “The video involves a lot of people having fun on a lake contrasted with a woman that is going through a very depressing divorce, so there are a lot of opposites.”