Rudimental know that Kiwis like to party. The UK electronica band played Rhythm and Vines in 2013 and a gig at Spark Arena in 2016, and are "excited" to head back to New Zealand next year to headline Splore.
"You guys party harder than Australians," says member Piers Agget, "and probably as hard as us."
Rudimental's four members, Agget, Amir Amor, Kesi Dryden and DJ Locksmith, started out DJing and playing on pirate radio stations in London before they rose to prominence with their 2012 hit Feel the Love, featuring John Newman. Since then, they've released two albums and collaborated with some of the strongest talents in pop music, including Emeli Sande, MNEK and Rita Ora.
The band are preparing to release their third album, Toast to our Differences, on January 25, next year. The album's title is Rudimental's answer to our political climate, with diversity celebrated in the songs and the list of collaborators.
"Being able to acknowledge and appreciate and celebrate people's differences definitely inspired the making of the album," says Agget. "Toast to our Differences came from a song we wrote with Shungudzo, Protoje, and Hak Baker – one person from Zimbabwe, one person from Jamaica, one person from East London. So the mixture of cultures really inspired us to make this record.
"The feel of the album is that we've got to be together in this, and there's definitely a positive, unity vibe and a family vibe in Rudimental anyway, but it came out more so in this album I think."
While it responds to the current climate, Rudimental's main objective is still to get people moving. "Some tracks on the album are just about feeling good because music's also got to uplift you and make you dance," says Agget.
Toast to our Differences boasts a stacked line-up of collaborators – from pop singers Anne-Marie and Jess Glynne to R 'n' B stars Raye and Elli Ingram. Agget says most of their collaborations come about organically through industry connections or friendships.
"We'll write a song with a songwriter or ourselves, and we'll then go on the hunt and try different vocalists – that's one way of working," he says. "Some of them come into the studio and write with us or are friends we've made over the years.
"For us, it's always been about developing new talent as much as it is about collaborating with Ed Sheeran."
Rudimental's latest single Summer Love, a new collaboration with Rita Ora, is timed fittingly with their upcoming New Zealand visit. The breezy, upbeat jam was released in November – an unusual time for a summer hit in the UK but perfect for our approaching sunny season.
"We were writing it with Rita Ora, and it was just a big track – we knew from when we first started it, you just know that there's something special about it," says Agget.
"We tailored it just for you guys," he says. "It's a special present for our Southern Hemisphere gang."
What: Playing Splore 2019
When: February 21-24
Where: Tapapakanga Regional Park