no kidding, this california band is the real thing.

by liza darwin

Los Angeles band Fool's Gold may have borrowed its name from the mineral pyrite, which was known for tricking miners into thinking it was actual gold, but there's no fooling around here. With their African beats and rhythms, their get-up-and-dance melodies, and their sundrenched California vibe, listening to the band's latest album Leave No Trace, is a musical journey in more than one way. A few of the guys stopped by NYLON last week and filled us in.

You guys are in the middle of a tour. What's your secret to getting huge crowds pumped up night after night?

Lewis Pescov- A little bit of light humor is always good.

Luke Top- I had a great joke at ACL, where I went on stage and said, "Hey everyone! We're Coldplay!" Coldplay was playing later that night. The crowd got into that.

What are your key items for the road?

Lewis- Comfortable shoes.

Luke- I've been getting into loafers.

Lewis- I've been thinking I should get some comfort shoes, you know, like those orthopedic ones? [laughing]. They'd be good for the road, or standing in line at the airport.

Who did you guys look to musically for this record?

Lewis- Our goal as a band was in many ways departing. When we sat down, we were like, "We could easily make a song like what's on our old record," but we were more interesting in growing and developing as a band. I think that we didn't set up to change our sound, but we opened our eyes and ears up a bit. The thing is, we hear our old songs in our new songs, but they weren't part of the foundation necessarily.

Luke- We had more of a filter on the record this time around. So it was like, "Oh yeah, this music sounds like music from Zimbabwe or Bali, but it also kind of just sounds like Fool's Gold."

How do you feel when people compare you to other bands?

Lewis- It's kind of infuriating when people are like, "Afro Pop is back!" What is that, exactly?

Luke- It's more confusing to me. Everyone has their reference points, but I think that it should be left up to interpretation.

Lewis- We're offering something that people can choose. They can listen to a song and decide to delve deeper if they want.

How so?

Lewis- There's a lot of depth, actually. It's almost like opening up a trap door and before you know it, you'll find yourself on Youtube  looking up Somalian punk music or whatever. We give you the option to discover what you want.

Fool's Gold - "Wild Window" from Paul Tao on Vimeo.