Lead singer Elizabeth Stokes talks new music and covering Death Cab for Cutie.
New Zealand indie group The Beths have spent much of the past eight months on the road after releasing their terrific debut album, Future Me Hates Me, last August. Today (March 25), the group has announced another tour of North America kicking off at the end of June, which will include stops at multiple U.S. festivals.
Future Me Hates Me is a tightly produced guitar-pop collection stuffed with immediate melodies and dripping with wit; the album received praise upon its release last year, and lead singer-songwriter Elizabeth Stokes tells Billboard that the album has picked up a glut of new listeners as the band has toured the world over the past year, including east coast dates this winter.
“It’s all been really exciting, and the adrenaline keeps you going,” she says. “We flew from Auckland, where it was summer, and we arrived in Toronto [in February] where it was snowing. And then driving from Toronto to Montreal we got caught in what I would describe as a terrifying snow storm, although someone who lives there would probably just be like, ‘Oh, it snowed.’ And then we go [south] and play South By Southwest, where it’s like, ‘Okay, now we’ll be playing four times in one day!’”
The band — Stokes, guitarist Jonathon Pearce, bassist Ben Sinclair and drummer Ivan Luketina — currently has a brief period of downtime following their stint at SXSW earlier this month, and before they head to the U.K. in May for another string of shows, Stokes is hoping to start working on the group’s next collection of songs. “It’s the first chance we’ve had to work on new material,” she explains. “I’m not home yet, but the others are, and when I get home we’ll be getting in a room and working out the arrangements for these new songs.
"Hopefully we’ll be playing a few of those on the next run.”
In the meantime, Stokes describes the band’s recent cover of Death Cab for Cutie’s “Soul Meets Body” for a SiriusXMU studio session as a total pleasure, after the Beths opened for Death Cab during their European tour earlier this year.
“I’m a huge fan,” Stokes admits. “You never know how it’s gonna go when you meet people and you’re huge fans of their music, but it ended being this lovely experience where they’re all really good people. We made a lot of good friends with them and the crew on that tour.”
Along with the new tour dates, the Beths have also announced that their debut EP, 2016’s Warm Blood, will be coming to vinyl for the first time on Apr. 26.
The Beths -- North American Tour Dates
June 27: Spring Green, Wisc. (The Shitty Barn) June 30: Chicago, Ill. (Logan Square Arts Festival) July 2: Grand Rapids, Mich. (The Pyramid Scheme) July 3: Detroit, Mich. (El Club) July 5: Toronto, Ont. (The Horseshoe Tavern) July 6: Ottawa, Ont. (RBC Ottawa Bluesfest) July 7: Buffalo, N.Y. (The 9th Ward of Babeville) July 8: Akron, Ohio (Music) July 9: Columbus, Ohio (Rumba Cafe) July 11: Indianapolis, Ind. (The Hi-Fi) July 12: St. Louis, Missouri (The Record Bar) July 14: Kansas City, Missouri (The Record Bar) Julu 17: Denver, Colo. (Globe Hall) July 20-21: Australia (Splendour In The Grass) July 23: San Diego, Calif. (Soda Bar) July 24: Los Angeles, Calif. (Bootleg Bar) July 25: Santa Barbara, Calif. (SOhO Music Club) July 26: San Fransisco, Calif. (The Independent) July 28: Sacramento, Calif. (Harlow’s) July 30: Bend, Oreg. (Volcanic Theatre Pub) July 31: Vancouver, B.C. (The Bitmore Cabaret) Aug. 1: Seattle, Wash. (Chop Suey) Aug. 2-3: Happy Valley, Oreg. (Pickathon)