Sunday, March 13, 2011

K-Rok Rocks!!! Exclusive Interview: Apollo 18

 The guys of band Apollo 18 are setting out on what we all hope to be the first of many US tours. I was lucky enough to be able to interview them as they set out on their new journey. They just left the Incheon airport earlier today:
A18 Fighting! :) 

Without further ado, here is Kim Dae-Inn with some answers about the band: 

First, could you introduce yourselves? Very few people are familiar with you and the band.
We're Apollo 18 from South Korea.  We play a loud mix of psychedelic, hard rock, post-grunge, and post-rock music.  We began our band in the summer of 2008.  We have three members.  I play bass, Hyunseok plays guitar, and Sangyun is the drummer.  We're starting our first American tour this week.  We have 16 concerts scheduled in Texas, Louisiana, Arkansas, Tennessee, and Oklahoma from March 15 - 27.  We'll perform at SXSW and The Valley of the Vapors Independent Music Festival.  We are very excited!  

(Photo by: Andre)

I love your unique sound, what do you think is the biggest influence on your music?

We're influenced by many things.  Everything we do and see in our everyday lives has an influence on the music we make.  Things like drinking, smoking, watching movies, enjoying nature, and meeting with our friends all inspire us in so many ways. 

Is there anyone in Korea or abroad that you want to collaborate with? 

We enjoy doing live collaborations with our friends for special concerts.  Last year we filmed a live DVD in Seoul's Hongdae district.  Members from great Seoul underground acts like Auhm, 13 Steps, No. 1 Korean, and Bomb&Tree made guest appearances on our songs.  We're hoping to release the DVD at some point this year.  Our original plan was to release it before now, but our USA tour this month is very expensive so the DVD release has been pushed back.   

We played on New Year's Eve at Live Club Ssam in Hongdae and Auhm, Slow Fuzz, and National Pigeon Unity joined us onstage.  We held an acoustic "USA Tour Send Off" concert last weekend at Guitar Men and Hippies Girls (also in Hongdae) and National Pigeon Unity's Donghoon played guitar with us and sang vocals on "High Stepper" it was really fun!

In a country that is very pop-heavy is it frustrating trying to get a hold in the music market? What's the biggest challenge? 

It's not something we really worry about.  We just make music we enjoy and try to have fun.  It's great if some other people like it, too.  Korea's music market is really small, so we are now trying to play more internationally.  We'll tour the U.S. in March.  We hope to play in other Asian countries this spring and summer.  We want to return to the U.S. in the fall and perform in Canada also.  We've talked a bit about trying to do a European tour in 2012.  We hope to share our music with people all around the planet.

Other than rocking out, and eating American food - anything else you're really looking forward to experiencing in the US?

We want to meet lots of new people and discover many new bands.  We are excited to experience American culture and to learn about other countries' cultures from the acts and music fans that will come to SXSW from all over the world.  We are really interested in checking out the different live clubs in all the places we visit and seeing how they are run.  

Do you have anything you want to say to your overseas fans? Or any questions even?

Please come and see us play.  We hope you have fun at our concerts.  Please say "hello" to us if you come to our gigs.  We like to make new friends.  If anyone has suggestions on things we should try to do (or places we should eat!) in any of the cities we are playing, please tell us.  

Apollo 18 also have a live DVD coming out soon - unfortunately it got a little delayed due to their extensive tour abroad, but here is the official trailer for it: (I'll be sure to update you when a release date is announced)

Here are the dates for the tour - they've added a few since I last posted this. If you're in the area go catch their show and make some new friends! 

March 15 Dallas, TX – Double Wide
March 16 Austin, TX (6 pm) – DMI House @ 219 West (Day Party at the Dart Music International House)
March 16 Austin, TX (10:40 pm) – Headhunters (Official SXSW Showcase)
March 17 Austin, TX (6 pm) – Zhi Tea Gallery (Zhi Tea presents: SXZT!)
March 18 Austin, TX (4 pm) – Hoeks Death Metal Pizza
March 18 San Marcos, TX – Triple Crown
March 19 Austin, TX (1 pm) – Aussie’s ( Party)
March 20 Austin, TX (1 pm) – Cheer Up Charlie’s
March 20, San Antonio, TX – Night Rocker Live
March 21 New Orleans, LA – Dragon’s Den
March 22 Houston, TX – Super Happy Fun Land
March 23 Denton, TX – Andy’s Bar
March 24 Hot Springs, AR – Low Key Arts (The Valley of the Vapors Independent Music Festival)
March 25 Memphis, TN – Stash House
March 26 Tulsa, OK – The Eclipse
March 27 Fort Worth, TX – 1919 Hemphill

Photo by: Kim Yeon-Jin

Please, always support the artists by buying the albums.
They're also available over at MrKwang
Follow the guys on twitter: @Apollo18Band 
Official Myspace (yes, actually, if you use MySpace you can find K-Rock bands)
Official Facebook
Official Website  (which does, by the way, have an English option)

And for fun, since I have them: Apollo 18 photo spam!

Photo By: Eui-Beom Lee
Photo By: Eui-Beom Lee
Photo By: Eui-Beom Lee
Photo By: Andre
Photo By: Andre
Photo By: Simon Bond
Photo By: Simon Bond (heehee - Who's this look like?)
Photo By: Simon Bond
Photo By: Kim Yeon-Jin


  1. good stuff, specially the photos. Looking forward to the Live DVD.

    Sadly no mention of Latin America =(

  2. @Amy :( I'm sure if they felt there was a strong interest they would try to make it there. They just want to play all over the world. It's also very expensive for the band to tour since they pretty much have to manage the cost themselves so they do a lot of fundraising. Spread the word down there, get them some fans and let them know - I bet they'd try to get there!

  3. So, u going to the concert?
    Good interview bb!

  4. @julili No, I'm not - it's too far away and too expensive to fly down there. :(


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