Oh Wonder explains why they chose to kick off 6-week tour in the Philippines

IMAGE Nikko Tuazon

Oh Wonder, composed of Anthony West and Josephine Vander Gucht, met with members of the Philippine media on February 16 at the Johnny B. Good restaurant in Glorietta 3, Makati City. The duo  will be performing at U.P. Town Center on February 17 at 6 p.m. and Alabang Town Center on February 18 at 4 p.m. 



Oh Wonder visits Manila for the third time.

Oh Wonder, composed of Anthony West and Josephine Vander Gucht, returns for a series of mall shows to promote its new album Ultralife.

This is the band's third time to visit the Philippines. The first time the duo visited the country was in 2016 for the Goodvybes Music Festival held in Pasay City. In July 2017, hundreds of their Filipino fans flocked to Samsung Hall in Taguig City to watch them perform at their first-ever solo show in the country.

PEP.ph (Philippine Entertainment Portal) caught up with the duo in an exclusive interview held last February 16 at the Johnny B. Good restaurant in Glorietta 3, Makati City.

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Both Anthony and Josepine agreed that the Philippines should be the first stop of their 6-week long tour after the warm reception they received during their last visit. 

Josephine recalled, "We played on our our favorite Oh Wonder of all time last time at Samsung Hall, so we had to come back and start our tour here."

Anthony added, "We try to relive that moment again."

When asked what prompted them to come back, Josephine answered, "You guys have great weather, which we don't have in London.

"You have great food and Anthony loves the mangoes here. So he's having like a mango shake every day."

For his part, Anthony quipped, "I probably had too many mangoes."

To this, Josephine replied laughingly, "You'd be yellow by the time we leave!"

What can their Filipino fans expect from their performances this 2018?

Josephine answered, "We're gonna play different songs for every show which is cool.

"It's the first city on our six-week tour so hopefully we start with lots of energy."

She continued, "We're just so excited, we're literally so excited."


ULTRALIFE. 
PEP asked the duo about their latest album Ultralife which was first released on July 14, 2017.

In a previous interview, the couple said it took them a month in New York City and at least two weeks at their hometown in London to finish all twelve tracks of their sophomore album.

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Josephine recounted, "We worked at it all in one go at home. We wrote half of it in New York, actually, and half of it in London.

"It was just pretty chill to like... take some time of and write a lot of the songs together.

"And recorded it in the same way, kinda two week period in London."

Andrew added, "We didn't think about the process too much.

"We just got on with it because it should feel like a very natural process when we wrote them.

For this album, Oh Wonder drew inspiration from their experiences during their two-year long tour.

Anthony explained, "We've been touring for about two years before making this album so our experiences were very vivid compared to kind of pre-touring.

"We've seen so much of the world, we've met some amazing people, played in front of incredible crowds so it's very inspiring.

Josephine agreed and said, "I think touring—and the highs and lows of touring—you're kinda living the extremes all the time time when you're on tour.

"You're either like singing in front of thousands of people or on your own in your hotel room, or on a different time zone to your family so you can't call them.

"You kind of have these two weird extremes so the album is about those two extremes and how to kind of find your way within them, I suppose."

The first track titled "Solo" was Anthony's favorite.

He said, "Had so much fun making that song. It was an incredible night time experience to just losing our minds in the studio with that one."

For her part, Josephine said the last track titled "Waste" was her favorite among the 12 tracks.

The singer explained, "It sounds indulgent but I listen to it when I'm feeling sad. I listen to that song.

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"It's one of the songs that I don't remember writing it and it just kind of happened.

"And I find a lot of comfort in it."

Meanwhile, their song "Lifetimes" was probably the hardest one to finish.

Josephine explained, "A song called 'Lifetimes' took us ages.

"We had like a verse and a chorus in different songs and we were trying to make them work and they wouldn't work."

Josephine continued, "And then we added a rap in it and then it kind of worked."

Anthony added, "We ended up doing a song together and that is 'Lifetimes.'

"It's a really fun song to make but it took a while."

Meanwhile, the alt-pop duo picked the song "Overgrown" to dedicate for their Filipino fans.

Josephine explained, "It's about being there for people when they're not feeling their best, and trying to light them up.

"I guess, that's why we're back in the Philippines because our fans light us up and I hope we're doing the same for them."

Anthony and Josephine will be performing at U.P. Town Center on February 17 at 6 p.m. and Alabang Town Center on February 18 at 4 p.m. 


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