Breaking Music: Astro

Can the Chilean band make it in the States? Their first step is in the Red Bull Studio LA.

Astro in the Red Bull Studio
© Erik Voake/Red Bull Content Pool

Foreign bands are all the rage in the US these days, but what you don’t hear much about are emerging artists from Chile. That might be about to change.

Meet Astro, Chilean rockers that have fully taken over South America and Central America. Now they have set their sights on the United States. The four piece -- often referred to as “the Chilean MGMT” -- made their Stateside debut in Austin last year and went on to play a few showcases. This summer, Astro returned to the US and recently wrapped a month-long tour at Lollapalooza.

“We’re figuring out just right now that the spread of our music doesn’t stop because of the language," says Nusser. Astro songs are all in Spanish. "I always thought that we had this breaking point, where we couldn’t go further because of the language, but going to New York was a very nice example of how universal our music can be -- regardless of the language that we sing."

While the band finds their frequent comparison to MGMT flattering, they would generally describe themselves a bit differently.

“I think it’s the easiest way to try to explain to someone else -- what this music is about -- but the moment you hear it, I think it’s far from that,” says Nusser. Daniel Varas, who plays keyboard and percussion, adds that he’d best explain Astro’s sound as “experimental pop, rock, and psychedelia.”

Astro in the Red Bull Studio
Astro in the Red Bull Studio LA© Erik Voake/Red Bull Content Pool
Astro in the Red Bull Studio
Astro in the Red Bull Studio LA© Erik Voake/Red Bull Content Pool

After touring for the past couple of years, the band is now shifting their focus towards writing and recording. A new album is due sometime next spring.

“I’m making about 50 ideas so later we’ll grab the best ideas and start at that point,” says Nusser, who has been feverishly writing new material on the road. Before the recent US tour wrapped, Astro made their way to Red Bull Studios LA, where they laid down drums for a new single.

“We haven’t made a song for about two years or so. This is very refreshing for us," says Nusser. "We have been learning a lot of stuff the past three or four years and I think this is the first time we’ve been applying what we’ve learned since then."

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