Interview: Devon Portielje and Dylan Phillips of Half Moon Run at Reading 2013

By on Tuesday, 1st October 2013 at 11:00 am

On the most overcast afternoon of Reading 2013, as the sweaty mugginess drips off my nose mixing with the coagulated Gaymers ‘tache forming on my upper lip, I had the fortune of a brief chin-wag with Canadian alt-rockers Half Moon Run. At a rickety picnic table in the mysterious (it wasn’t, but I wish it was) guest area of Reading Festival I parked my bum opposite from two of the band, Devon Portielje and Dylan Phillips. Immediately they struck me as the uber-cool their music suggests they are, shades firmly wrapped around their heads, trendy vests donned – staring back at them they had me: a distended mess suffering from a lack of sleep, the effects of the night before and a serious lack of vitamin C.

Their reaction was to be polite and amicable as anything, a sign of true gents from across the pond if I’ve ever seen it. But I expected a kind of humility from this band, because of where they hail from – Canada, kind of like the USA’s less shouty and brash brother. [I’m trying not to take offence at this. – Ed.] Half Moon Run were typically the British’s view of Canadians, easy going and cool as finely diced cucumbers.

Did they seem out of their depth for a band making their bow at Reading, in their show on the Festival Republic Stage? The crowd was *almost* as packed out as it was for Radio 1 darlings the 1975, which is testament to just how well thought of Half Moon Run are in the UK. Whether that was because one of their songs has been used in the trailer for Assassin’s Creed Black Flag, which looks wicked cool, or for the fact that their inimitable brand of warbling harmonies has struck a chord with UK audiences already, it doesn’t matter. How do they feel about the reception they’ve received in the UK? Devon thinks it’s just great: “I think the audience in the UK have really warmed to us, which is nice as we were a bit nervous coming over here.”

What nerves, as they cruised through their eight song set and a triumphant version of ‘Call Me in the Afternoon’ which had every lyric shouted back from the crowd, to their immense finale of ‘She Wants To Know’. “We’ve been excited about Reading since we knew we were booked for it, as we know how special it is in the UK, and worldwide, it has a great reputation. I mean, doing Glastonbury was obviously very special too, because well IT’S GLASTONBURY! But to play Reading Festival so early on in our career is really, really special.”

After a recent tour with bonafide stars and now (somehow) Glastonbury headliners Mumford and Sons, this Canadian four-piece look set upon perhaps not the same path as the British country rockers, but one which could lead them on the same trajectory, perhaps at a more manageable rate? The boys certainly have their feet on the ground: “Touring with Mumford and Sons was one hell of an experience, coming out for the encore almost every night with them and playing in front of huge crowds like they do. Can we see ourselves doing something like that, one step at a time, please?”

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3 Responses

11:02 am
1st October 2013

New post: Interview: Devon Portielje and Dylan Phillips of Half Moon Run @halfmoonrun at Reading 2013 @OfficialRandL

11:22 am
1st October 2013

RT @tgtf: New post: Interview: Devon Portielje and Dylan Phillips of Half Moon Run @halfmoonrun at Reading 2013 @OfficialRandL…

12:47 pm
1st October 2013

RT @tgtf: New post: Interview: Devon Portielje and Dylan Phillips of Half Moon Run @halfmoonrun at Reading 2013 @OfficialRandL…

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