The Twelves - The Dirty Dozen
The Twelves have been popping up on blogs everywhere over the past few months, remixing everyone from Radiohead to Black Kids and new indie band du jour, The Virgins. About to hit Sydney for their debut tour 3D hit up the Brazilians.
Musically, a lot of people associate Brazil with the Baile funk sound that seemingly blew up out of nowhere a couple of years ago. Does that kind of MPC-based production influence you guys at all, or is your production more of a reaction to it-
I can’t say we are directly influenced by it – Baile funk has been around here since we were kids and it never really grew on us, we could never get passed the vocals which were generally pretty annoying. But some of our favourite producers do a lot of that cut-n-paste sample stuff, like Mr Oizo – his production is genius.
When you play a show, it’s more than just a DJ set. What kind of gear do you have with you at a show-
Yeah, we like to make it as much of an improvisation as is possible with two people. We’re actually using just a laptop and two MIDI keyboards but we have it set up so that we’re always layering beats and synths on top of songs, so that they sound unique every night.
Does the improvisation come from a particularly musical background- Did you have a lot of music around you when you were growing up-
We were both playing instruments from a relatively early age: I took up drums when I was 11 and Joao has played guitar for like forever, so we are drawn by the band dynamic much more than the DJ vibe. We would like to make it more of a band eventually, but for now we have developed a fun hybrid DJ/band thing.
The label “blog house” is something that is attributed to a lot of artists who rise to fame through Hype Machine and Last.fm, etc. – is that kind of stigma something you’re conscious of in the studio-
I don’t know, I guess it’s just plain unavoidable these days, right- It does affect our producing, I think, because with Hype Machine there’s like hundreds of new tracks each day, it’s easy to sound repetitive, so yeah, we pressure ourselves in trying to make our tracks distinguishable from the everyday blog remix.
You’ve been doing a lot of remixes which have been huge – have many acts approached you for production duties on songs/albums- Is that something you’d be interested in-
We get occasional offers for song production; it’s definitely something we’re interested in. But it’s hard for us to find the right people; we come from an indie rock background but our offers are usually from dance music type acts – doesn’t always work, hehe.
You’re playing in Sydney with Theatre of Disco and Miami Horror – how would you describe the common element you guys all share-
I think the common element would have to be a liking for pop structures in songs, verses and choruses and such. Which is unfortunately pretty rare in club music.
What’s in store for you in the future, are there any plans for some official releases of original tracks-
We’ve got some tracks in the works, some collaborations, a few new remixes. No fixed dates though.
WHO: The Twelves
WHAT: Play Oxford Art Factory
WHEN: Saturday 9 May