An interview with Tegan Quin

On picking the song “Alligator” to remix:

TQ: “Hell” was the first single from the record and the record company decided they wanted to go with “Alligator” for the second single. Sara and I are oftentimes highly involved with picking singles but we always seem to pick the wrong ones so we sort of left it up to the label on this record and they felt really comfortable going to more poppy stations who have a little more of a — this stuff seems so boring to talk about, but so many alternative stations are aimed at men. The other stations like AC and top 40 stations are aimed at women, so we’re trying to find a single that can work for those formats and so “Hell” and “Northshore” and some of the rock songs just don’t work in that format so “Alligator” was the song we thought maybe would cross over better.

On having less stage banter between the two of them on the current tour:

TQ:As we put out more records, to be perfectly honest, we’re just trying to figure out how to play more songs. At the beginning of this record, we were playing over two hours every night because we were talking so much. That is really awesome for some fans. For a lot of fans, they were like “Wow, two hours is a really long show. We’d rather hear more music.”

We have a really good dialogue with our audience. We’re always trying to find a balance between what they want and what we want artistically, as artists. Sara and I have always really enjoyed talking on stage. As the years wore on, playing two hours every night is impossible. It’s exhausting but also, a lot of these theaters have formats and curfews so we kind of decided to cut some of the talking out but keep the music. People who are paying to see us, the majority of them are paying to see the whole Tegan and Sara experience, and that’s talking and music, but if all of a sudden we got up and talked for an hour and a half and played four songs, they might be disappointed.

Sara’s really in a space right now where she just feels like playing music and she’s not feeling like standing and talking. As we play bigger venues, it creates a tug-of-war with the audience because they’re rocking out and having fun and we want them to be silent and listen to us and that’s hard to do. Some nights it really works. Every single night it’s different. It’s sort of tough to get up on stage … every night, Sara and I have to get up and figure out quickly is this a talking audience? Is this a talkative audience? Is this a drunk audience? Is this a low-energy audience? I know for some of our fans, they’d love to have a three hour show and have us talk, but a lot of people want to rock out. We’re filling the time with what we think is appropriate.

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