While seemingly distracted by our own deep love affair with the band, The Cat Empire have steadily become one of Australia’s most successful musical exports. Garnering frenzied devotion across the globe the band regularly generate more international business than any of their local peers, all without anyone at home really noticing.
Hardly ones to boast (they are Aussies after all), the six bound together by a love of music since their teens have gone humbly, yet deliberately about their business. That business is crafting infectious, genre-embracing anthems, releasing them on chart-topping, multi- platinum selling albums (both on major labels and independently), and playing hundreds of world class, awe-inspiring shows a year, all the while sustaining and growing an army of ardent fans at home, and in even larger numbers, across the globe.
It’s not unusual to find the band mobbed by fans and media at airports in Spain, appearing live on iconic TV shows hosted by the likes of Letterman, Leno, Wogan and Ferguson, riding high at the business end of international album charts, dominating airwaves and main stage bills at all of the iconic international music festivals you wished you could go to, Glastonbury and Bonnaroo included. It seems The Cat Empire brand of feel good, high-energy, smile- inducing, euphoric roots pop that we all know and love, has had a global address when it comes to the winning of hearts.
When asked about the overseas reception offered the band, The Cat Empire co-lead vocalist and songwriter Felix Riebl explains, “at some level I think that The Cat Empire appealed to our Australian audience because the sound was influenced by so many different places. But when we went abroad our international audiences heard something distinctly Australian about us. It meant our music could travel in a really interesting way. What’s amazing for us, is for all of the love we get from our home crowds, and there’s been plenty, support for the band overseas has continued to grow. It’s exciting.”
From the very get go, and off the back of a hugely successful, double platinum debut album, The Cat Empire’s sights were set on international climes. An early invitation to play in the U.S. coming out of one of their very first Australian shows whetted the appetite for the sextet and put in motion a plan to devote as much energy to international touring as they did at home on the road. The results elevated The Cat Empire’s status, and demand as an international commodity as reflected in the achievements that the band were rapidly stacking up. Culminating in the opportunity to record their second album Two Shoes in Havana, Cuba.