: Deanna Rilling
Sorry, guys, they’re both taken. But you can still be seduced by their music, whether they’re DJing, producing, or even singing. And ladies, their vintage-chic is always on beat. Prior to their recent gig at Marquee Nightclub, Rebecca & Fiona chatted about their forthcoming album, politics, their favorite beer, and the occasional fight.
What was the EDC experience like for you?
Rebecca: Amazing. The crowd was amazing and at festivals especially in America, they’re so open to new music. They really enjoy—like at clubs, people can be more like they want to hear what they already heard before, but at festivals, everybody’s in a state of mind to go on a journey, to learn new stuff.
Fiona: It was bigger and more exciting than we could have ever dreamed of.
What’s the competition like in a predominately boys’ club?
Rebecca: In America from the beginning people haven’t questioned us as much as in Europe and Sweden; people are more open here and happy it’s girls playing. Men don’t feel as big of a competition towards us as in Sweden, at least we felt like that. So we’re just enjoying it right now. We don’t really want to talk about us being girls, we in the same profession as the male DJs, we just do what we do.
Fiona: It’s so weird that we get compared to other girls that are not musicians or DJs.
Rebecca: Or they always say “the female DJs” Rebecca & Fiona—you don’t need to divide us into different [categories].
Tell me about how your families’ music backgrounds influence what you do today.
Rebecca: I think we were around music for so long when we grew up, the step of making that a reality for ourselves wasn’t hard; we never questioned if it was possible or if we were allowed to do it, we just did it. I mean so many people have big dreams or think it’s too far away to make it happen, even though you can just try it out and maybe you’re really good at it and find it fun. So that was a good way for us to just explore it and not question ourselves.
What was the overall vibe you were going for in the “Union” video, Abba?
Fiona: We’re working with a theme and it will become clear to our fans what we’re thinking.
So the '60s, the '70s…
Fiona: The next video will be the '80s and slowly moving into today.
Is there another full artist album in the works?
Fiona: It’s actually a whole album and we’re going to aim for a release in November because we want to release a couple of singles before and make the theme, like the '80s, '90s and current. So hopefully in November.
Maybe something techno influenced since I spotted you dancing atop the booth for Richie Hawtin at Nocturnal Wonderland last year?
Fiona: Some of the stuff, because we like so much more underground music. I think even when we are not thinking about it, we get influences from so many other different—we listen to old music as well, like rock and pop, '90s stuff, we listen to so much different kind of music so it’s hard to not get influences from other genres than the electronic scene.
In a dream world, if you could collaborate with anyone from any time, who would you want to work with?
Fiona: I would like to make a track with Suicide. It would be fun to work with a band, have more live instruments and that way of writing music because we’re attached to our computers. Even though it’s working out well, some kind of old [process].
What tracks are essentials in your sets right now?
Rebecca: We really like a track called “Zodiac” by Arston. But we play a lot of music made by Carli, a Swedish producer and Fiona’s boyfriend. And we play a lot of Loops of Fury, they’re super-good producers as well. And then we pretty much only play edits or remixes or mashups between tracks and our vocals, so even though it’s not just our music, we try to put our vocals on the tracks. … It’s fun for us to do special edits and stuff and also provide a new song to music they’ve already heard. They might want to hear a track really bad, but we think the vocals are super cheesy on the original one so we always make a special edit.
Do you still buy vintage clothes, or has your style changed?
Fiona: No, vintage. It’s still vintage.
Rebecca: We were at Goodwill yesterday!
Fiona: We really just like to buy old stuff. I mean when buying underwear or T-shirts or base clothing, we have some brands we really like, but when we’re buying funny clothes or outfits, it’s always second-hand or independent brands; small companies making their own stuff.
You’ve said if you weren’t making music, you’d be into politics. What causes are you into?
Fiona: There’s a lot.
Rebecca: She worked with politics a lot before.
Fiona: I worked for the student council government, so all the students have their organizations with school politics and stuff. So I’m very interested in school politics, but we’re socialists, so socialist politics.
Rebecca: It’s connected to the way we make music and the ability for us to make music has been very supported in Sweden.
In America, many people don’t follow global politics and the media has given the term
“socialist” or “Socialism” a negative connotation. Explain a bit more about the policies you believe in.
Fiona: We’ve had a socialist government for a long time in Sweden and it’s about sharing and taking care of each other and not leaving people behind. For us it’s important to not only focus on money, make decisions based on money, but you make your decisions from the heart.
If you two had to interview each other, what would you ask?
Rebecca: Oh, that would be so boring; we know everything about each other. Like, “What do you want to eat today?” “The same as you.” “What did you do last night?” “Same as you.” No, but we have developed very similar tastes to everything almost.
Fiona: It wouldn’t work otherwise. I think it’s natural we have a lot of the same interest, tastes and thoughts, but it’s also growing much stronger. We don’t really need to talk, we always want to eat the same thing, which is really good. I think if one wanted to eat beef and one sushi.
Rebecca: We’re also so primitive when we’re touring: What are we gonna eat? When are we gonna sleep? What are we gonna wear?
Do you ever fight?
Fiona: We fought at EDC actually.
Rebecca: But that was a misunderstanding. I felt super sick. I was so weak and you know when your eyes get blacked out? I just needed to chill out and didn’t want to destroy anybody’s night because we were out there in the desert. So I just tried to eat and get back on track and I didn’t really want to tell anybody but I struggled the whole night and when we got back I just wanted to run up to my room and they were like, “Why are you so rude?” and blah, blah, blah. And I was like, “Fuck you guys! I’ve been telling you the whole night I feel super bad! Stop bugging me! I just want to sleep!” She didn’t know, but I figured she knew because she asked me but figured since we’re always tired, hungry, kind of stuff. So that’s pretty much the reason we only get in a fight: Misunderstandings.
If you were to partner with any kind of brand, be it clothing, makeup, beer, etc, what would it be?
Rebecca: We could think about doing some kind of makeup thing with Mac or something, that would be fun.
Fiona: We would like to be sponsored by Rimowa the bag company, because they’re so expensive. We want the big ones in silver!
You ladies like to drink. What’s your favorite booze?
Rebecca: We always drink beer. We like Sapporo.
Fiona: We like tap beer a lot.
Rebecca: They don’t have it in America as much as Europe.
Fiona: We like Stella on tap.
What has the residency at Marquee been like for you?
Rebecca: We get to play our own stuff.
Fiona: Marquee has been super-supportive.
: You should always play what you like. They don’t want us to play commercial. They told us in the beginning, “If you have a hard time, just do whatever you like.”—Deanna Rilling