We’re moving our offices to Sweden. Over the past few months, we’ve highlighted a number of great bands from a country that had already produced The Hives and countless other gems. The beauty of this latest “Swedish Invasion” is that no two bands sounds the same. Imagine 4AD for the new millenium and out pops the brilliantly named, Twiggy Frostbite. Their debut album “Through Fire” evokes images of Cocteau Twins trapped on an iceberg; beautiful, isolated and floating in and out of your consciousness. The members of the band spent some time talking us out of applying for visas to move to Sweden and about their plans to capture your Valentine’s Day candy money.
TDOA: We’ve read that Anna-Karin and Elin first started playing together while touring to promote a compilation album that you weren’t even on! Can you tell us how that transpired and what led the two of you hook up musically?
TF: We both studied jazz music at the same school, but originally we didn’t really know each other until Elin was going to perform as a solo artist for the first time and needed a clarinet player for that occasion. Ever since then we have been unseparable.
TDOA: Can you talk about the differences betwen Twiggy Frostbite and your first group Loai? What led you to dissolve Loai and form TF?
TF: The biggest difference is maybe the kind of music and setting of instruments. Loai was more acoustic and jazz influenced, while TF is more based on electrified instruments and basic pop tunes. The reason we dissolved Loai was because all of the other band members wanted to move on with their lives in other cities. So we moved to London instead. We felt like we needed some new inspiration and we had a desire to make another kind of music.
TDOA: Generally we hate the “how’d you come up with the name of your band” questions, but yours is one of the best we’ve heard in a very long time. Who came up with the name and what was the inspiration?
TF: We actually started with the band name, before the music was even created. After long nights of endless discussions we agreed on that Twiggy Frostbite was significant for the feeling of the music we wanted to make; angular, cold and dreamlike.
TDOA: How has the formation of Twiggy Frostbite impacted your other group, The Deer Tracks?
TF: We have not noticed any negative consequences. We just feel so lucky that both The Deer Tracks and Twiggy Frostbite can be creative in their own separates unique way. For us it feels like it would be a great loss if one of the bands did not exist.
TDOA: Your absolutely gorgeous song “Heroes” has received quite a bit of attention. What inspired the song lyrically and musically?
TF: The song ends with a cliffhanger where the characters have to make a decision whether to be brave or to hide, to let go or to hold on. The music adds to the tension that never gets released in the song. The end is up to the listener to decide.
TDOA: What bands inspired you musically as you recorded your album? There’s an ethereal feel to your music that reminds us of early 4AD bands, but there’s clearly some more modern influences too.
TF: We didn’t really talk about any specific band influences during the recording of the album. We just tried to create something beautiful that described the feelings we had at that time.
TDOA: There are so many great bands that have come from Sweden, particularly in the last decade. Is there a great deal of support for live music there and is the music industry there pretty vibrant?
TF: The only thing can think of is that there is a definite feeling of DIY in Sweden. If you do something you like, you don’t sit around waiting for someone to like it too. You just try to make it possible in every way you can think of.
Although, we are very lucky to have great support from our record company. They always try to find new ways and opportunities for us to be creative in our own way.
TDOA: Whether you’re a man or a woman, sometimes being attractive can be seen as a detriment to being taken seriously. Without sounding obnoxious, you’re a good looking group. Is that something that you consider when marketing the band and did it influence the decision to do the animated video for Heroes?
TF: We haven’t had that in mind when either marketing or making the video, the reason for choosing the animated video was that the creator had really understood the vibe and story of the song and the she presented it well in the animation. We will probably appear ourselves in the next video, depending on what ideas will come up.
TDOA: The arrangements on all the songs on the album are so interesting, so we’d like to ask you about the songwriting process. What comes first; lyrics, vocal melodies, bass lines, keyboards? How do the songs generally come together for you?
TF: Mainly the melodies and the feeling of the song come first, after that we try to arrange it with instruments so that the feeling comes through right. The lyrics are written throughout the process.
TDOA: Have their been any discussions of coming to America to tour with the record? What are your plans for 2010?
TF: One of the biggest plans we have for 2010 is to write and record songs for the next album. Also we have plans to develop the live performance on just the three of us, since the rest of the band once again felt that they needed to go on with their lives in other cities. What first felt like another setback is now turning out o be a blessing. Lots of new ideas for making our live show interesting has come up and we are most excited to make it happen.
A release and tour for America is not decided yet, but we keep our fingers crossed!
For more information about the band, click here.