|Boys BEWARE! They're actually quite sweet...|
Well right now we are smoking a joint on the top bunk of our bunk bed in our pink apartment. Our “world” these days consists of smoking weed, fucking with boys, practicing and writing more songs for our full length. We just got back from France and we’re headed to Japan in two weeks.
You’re originally from San Diego, what prompted the move out East?
Originally we both came here to go to school. But we got bored and started a band instead.
Is it tough trying to make The Shining Twins stand out when there are so many bands on such a small island, and that’s not even taking Brooklyn into account?
It’s hard to say. We’ve gotten really lucky. There are so many good bands in New York and Brooklyn right now, like Dirty Fences, Guards and The Babies. But who can resist twins, right?
What were some early influences? What made you want to start a band?
We started a band because we were bored and sick of dating boys in bands. At the time we were listening to a lot of Guided By Voices, The Damned and girl garage groups like Thee Headcoatees and early riot grrrl bands like Bratmobile. We figured that if the boys we were dating could be in bands, we could start our own band, play our own music and meet even cuter dudes.
I think my first exposure to you was listening to Mark Ronson’s show on East Village Radio. I was blown away by the confidence and attitude you had in both the music and as personalities. Where does that come from?
We felt really comfortable with Mark, because he’s an amazing guy and our good friend, so having him introduce us to the scene through his show made it a little easier to be confident in what we were doing. Also, we’re pretty annoying and persistent to begin with, so we think that sort of thing just comes through naturally?
I see you have since collaborated with Mark Ronson, can you talk a little about that?
Haha yeah. We met Mark through mutual friends, and he called us at 5 in the morning one night and asked if we would come to his studio and rap for him. We ended up doing two songs, one with Spank Rock and one with Pill and MNDR, who are all fucking awesome. We haven’t actually heard the songs, but we hear we sound like a pretty fucked up version of the Tom Tom Club.
I have to ask about the name and the image you play around with…are you big Kubrick fans?
Of course we love The Shining. The book too. But we’ve really always thought of ourselves as twins, and Alex’s dad said we looked like “those twins from The Shining” when we were really hungover one morning. We thought it was pretty accurate and kept the name.
What are some artists (of any genre or medium) that get you excited?
The Ramones, The Damned and The Stooges. We think Road To Ruin, Damned Damned Damned, and Raw Power are the three most perfect albums of all time. You can listen to all three in a row, front to back. We LOVE Jim Goad. He’s a writer who created “Answer ME!” that 90s magazine that got banned. He writes about sluts and serial killers and shit all the time. And Tank Girl is our idol.
Your first EP Come Play With Us has a wonderfully “primitive” quality to it and the songs sound like perverse nursery rhymes, filtered through a glorious drug binge. What inspires a song?
You pretty much nailed it. Perverted nursery rhymes filtered through some sort of glorious never ending binge. And the other usual stuff – boys we like, boys we hate, girls we hate, and how crazy our families are.
So you’re working on a new EP This Is Dumb, how is that going and what can we expect from this release? When is it scheduled to come out? What label, etc.?
We’re pretty much done with it. We’ve recorded everything, we just need to mix and master it. It’s a lot punker, louder and faster than our first record, where we learned to play our instruments during the recording. As for what comes next, just prepare to be attacked by The Shining Twins very soon.
You’re working with Albert Hammond Jr. from the Strokes on your new EP? How did that come about?
He is helping us finish This Is Dumb. We met Albert at a bar, forced him to listen to our record, and he offered to help. We’re really excited because we’ve been obsessed with The Strokes forever.
Is there a sound in mind or record that guided the recording process?
After we wrote our first EP, we started studying records like it was our homework. We decided that we wanted to create our own sound, that combined that “perverse nursery rhyme” shit and more punk rock, dirty records like The Germs’ What We Do Is Secret. We also wanted to show that we actually learned how to play our instruments, and knew what we were doing. We wanted people to be able to listen to our music and not be able to tell if we were boys or girls. Just musicians.
You recently went to play some shows in Europe, how were you received over seas?
Let’s just say, God Bless The French.
Are there any differences in playing there vs. here in the Good Ole US of A?
Yeah, it’s more about being a spectacle and putting on a show in France, which we love doing. Also, they don’t really understand all of our lyrics, which is cool with us. They tend to like us more because of it.
Any plans on touring the West Coast?
Hopefully. We want to tour everywhere. Forever and ever and ever and ever.
What is the one thing nobody told you about “life on the road”?
We haven’t really been “on the road” yet, and we can’t wait to, but everyone says we’re either going to get AIDS and/or end up in jail. From what we have experienced, however, nobody could have predicted how crazy Xanax (our guitar player) is. We are making a movie about him and his “Xanic” episodes. He’s insane. REALLY insane.
Where would you like to see The Shining Twins 5 years from now?
Still touring, racking up boys and maybe rapping a lil bit.
Duvet puts The Shining Twins through "The Wringer" for these Ridiculous but Necessary Questions”
What is your favorite cheese? Marisa: Brie. Cuz it’s the most fattening. Alex: Cheddar? I don’t know? What comes on a cheeseburger?
The Olsen Twins or Nelson? Olsen Twins. Obviously. But only until they were 13. Now they suck.
Beverley Hills 90210 or Gossip Girl? Gossip Girl. NO QUESTION. We are in LOVE with Chuck Bass.
Xanax or Valium? Both. Come on.
A month in the van with anyone (your pick)? Evan Dando