Brisbane Progressive Metal sensations Caligula’s Horse will be embarking on an East Coast Australian tour in August, on which they will play their critically-acclaimed latest album ‘In Contact’ in full. They’ve also recently announced a headlining European tour, so all eyes will be on the Brisbanites in the coming months. Frontman and lyricist Jim Grey gives his thoughts on what’s to come.

“I think our kind of main goal for the whole thing was to make sure that we made it as special as we can for the people coming,” he opens, with a very soft-spoken manner that belies his energetic stage persona, “so it’s like, this is something we’re probably not going to do again, you know? Playing ‘In Contact’ in full, start to finish, plus a few bonus tracks at the end. But we wanted that to be special for us and for the audience, in playing these intimate venues. It’s like a real face-to-face kind of vibe. It’s going to be really super energetic and sweaty, and that’s the kind of shit I like.

“It’s actually something I’ve wanted to do since the moment it was finished,” he continues, “since we kind of realised that we’d manifested this whole story, or these stories within the album, it was just like, it would feel so good to play it live. So for starters, just the entire spectacle is something I’m looking forward to. I think for the most part it’s going to be awesome playing the songs that we’re probably never going to play again, or that will only very rarely be in the setlist, like some of the shorter songs and the ones that ask a bit more of the audience, stuff like Fill my Heart, Capulet and Love Conquers All, so those are going to be a treat to play, and especially with people knowing the album so well now, there’s going to be a real interaction that I’m looking forward to.”

As for the European tour, Grey reflects, “Yes, I’m really looking forward to it. I mean, we’ve been to Europe a couple of times now, but it’s always been for festival shows or supporting bigger bands to try and get that exposure and stuff like that. We’ve been over playing with Opeth and Pain of Salvation, Shining from Norway and all this stuff, it’s been awesome, but it’s now at the point where we’re able to go over there and sort of host our own show. We’re going to headline across Europe, and that’s sort of a dream come true for us. So we’ll see how it goes! It’ll be awesome. In terms of the supports, you know, we’ve known the dudes in Circles for years now and we’ve always wanted to put something together, just nothing’s sort of fallen together at the right time, and it just so happens that they were looking to go to Europe around that time anyway, which is like let’s lock this in, let’s do it. And of course the I Built the Sky guys, after the Australian tour we did with them recently, we just love them so much musically and personally, so it’s just going to be a really friendly tour experience for us. Total comfort on the tour bus!”

When it comes to how the European tour will differ from Australian shows, it’s something Grey has already given some thought. “It’s funny, this is a real curiosity for Australian people, I think. It depends on the country. We like to lump Europe in together, for example ‘We’re doing a European tour,’ but really it’s like a whole stack of different countries all with close proximity to one another but with completely different language and culture and stuff like that. We can’t really relate in Australia, because you cross vast distances and everyone’s roughly the same with some slight cultural and accent differences. But we’re going to be travelling three or four-hour drives, it’s not even like a third of the way to Sydney from Brissy, and it’ll be a completely different currency, language, culture. So between those countries, people’s responses to a live musical show can be fundamentally different as well. I knew for a fact that Hungary, from our experience in Budapest last time, is very close to Australia in that it was really physical and excited and people really wanted to get up amongst it and that sort of thing. The UK is obviously very similar as well. Then if you look at Scandinavian audiences, from my experience they’ve been a lot more stoic in their stuff. So yes, it’s very different over there because it’s just so varied, I suppose. That’s the biggest difference.”

As for what lies beyond the upcoming tours, Grey is cautious about getting fans prematurely excited, but there are certainly rumblings of things to come.

“We’re totally open to tour plans and things,” he affirms. “There’s nothing set in stone though outside of Europe and the East Coast tour, but Sam and I have just tentatively begun writing some new material. It’s not like we’re digging in to go, ‘Yep, new album, bang on,’ it’s just ‘Let’s discuss what direction we want to take it, let’s throw some ideas around,’ and that’s really fun; sort of thinking about what steps we want to take, how we might move away from ‘In Contact’ and how we move forward as a band and as a writing couple. Couple?” he laughs, catching his slip of the tongue. “I’m going to use that word, ‘writing couple!’ I’m not going to say ‘writing team,’ we’re a couple,” he goes on, embracing it. “But also it’s really cool, because now both Josh and Adrian as the newest members of the band are very eager to involve themselves in the writing process as well, so we’ve got a couple of new voices in the room, and so I’m really curious to see what kind of sounds come out, actually!”