Interview: Quick chat with Howlin' Pelle Almqvist of the Hives
The band plays two local shows this week.
After more than eight years away, Sweden’s best-dressed rock ’n’ roll band, the Hives, is returning to Orange County, taking over the Observatory in Santa Ana on Sept. 11. True to form, Howlin’ Pelle Almqvist , the quintet’s notoriously cocksure frontman, expects pure excitement over this smaller stop on their West Coast swing, followed by a Sept. 14 gig at the Wiltern in L.A.
His enthusiasm, he says, stems from the often electrifying pair of sets the group played on the final day of each Coachella weekend earlier this year.
“It was really, really cool and you could tell people had been wanting us to come back for … probably four years, or the better part of it,” Almqvist mentioned in a phone chat last week. “It was almost overdue … and it was like an eruption, you could say – an eruption of love between the Hives and the fans.”
But when asked about any memories of playing O.C., he can’t quite recall the last time. Not surprising, considering it’s been so long: the ripping garage-rockers last popped up at KROQ’s 2004 Weenie Roast alongside Beastie Boys, the Killers, Yeah Yeah Yeahs and the Strokes. Nor has he any knowledge of the venue the group will play here.