For cellist Sam Anderson and his Hey Marseilles bandmates, gigging on The Porch stage at the Firefly Musical Festival on June 22 will be the group's first major festival outside of the northwest.
"We've never been to Dover," Anderson, 22, said during a phone interview with the Dover Post last week. "We're excited for this to be our first time there."
Considering Hey Marseilles just released its sophomore album in March with "Lines We Trace," playing at Firefly will be even sweeter for the crew, which drew national attention with its splendid debut record, "To Travels and Trunks," released in 2010.
Hailing from Seattle, Wash., Hey Marseilles is a six-piece orchestral-pop ensemble that's been making quite a bit of noise in Washington the last few years, rocking major events like Bumbershoot and gracing the main stage at the Sasquatch! Music Festival, both in 2012. This time around the guys are on an intense national tour with "Lines We Trace."
"It's only the second record that we have out," explained Anderson, whose big brother, Jacob, plays viola in the band. "I mean, we took that first record so far. It's just incredible to me that … we've been a band for almost seven years and only just a few months ago we put out our second record. So that first record took us all around the country and led us to a lot of big things in Seattle. We're definitely excited to have the second one out that we feel [shows] a growth of the band. We're excited to see where this one will take us."
On its debut album, Hey Marseilles drew inspiration from traditional folk instrumentation and arrangements as the guys attempted to make strong pop songs. "Lines We Trace" pushes the envelope further with a fresher sound that includes less accordion and an influence that doesn't even show up on the band's first record, which is an electronic one, inspired by producers like Kid Cudi and The Weekend.
What's more, Anderson says one of Cudi's drumbeats off his album "Man on the Moon: The End of Day" influenced Hey Marseilles' new single, "Heart Beats."
"It was like a drum beat that we were all kind of jamming on one day and Colin [Richey], the drummer, wasn't familiar with the track," said Anderson, who doesn't recall the name of the Cudi song. "But Nick [Ward] had kind of brought in this idea and he was kind of referencing that song and we had this drum hook going and that ended up in the last part of the song 'Heart Beats.'"
Page 2 of 2 - Looking back, Anderson is pleased his band mates were sold on the idea of incorporating electronic elements into the new project, especially Richey, a guy who "didn't listen to The Weekend and Kid Cudi," Anderson said. "I'm really proud of our band for the decisions that we made regarding the material we would include on the record."
Hey Marseilles will play on The Porch at the Firefly Music Festival in the Dover International Speedway's Woodlands at 2:15 p.m. on Saturday, June 22.