Sisters Bianca (Coco) and Sierra (Rosie) Casady, collectively known as the freak-folk duo CocoRosie, recently stopped by The Clubhouse in Buenos Aires for an intimate performance in promotion of their new album Heartache City. The record is the sixth from the sister-songwriter duo, and like so much of their other work began with experimentation and play. Broken instruments and afro wigs play an important role in CocoRosie’s new album, which is exactly what the audience got during their eclectic performance along with the girl’s usual prescription of intimate lyrics, odd visuals and sung poetry.
We caught up with the sisters before their performance and talked about finding inspiration, traveling South America, and getting to the other side of Heartbreak City.
| Interview with Bianca & Sierra of CocoRosie |
Q: Which things or experiences had a strong influence in the creation of your musical project?
A: I think childhood for Bianca and I is a very strong factor because we’re sisters. So recovering memories from early childhood has a big influence in our process and musical projects. It’s a very interesting place to look for inspiration.
Q: How have the past couple years of exploring solo work, running a label, and side projects re-energized your interest in CocoRosie?
A: Nice question! So we worked a lot on theatre for the last several years. We worked with this special theatre director Robert Wilson, he’s from the seventies so he’s done hundreds of pieces and is also a really special person. This was our introduction to theatre and we discovered it wasn’t a bad difference from our performance language, and then Sierra actually played one of the actresses in the performance while I also started directing theatre pieces too. It’s something new we discovered in this collaboration with theatre.
A: What’s interesting in relation with CocoRosie is that theatre is just a different platform for developing characters in our music, poetry and different types of voices that we use since our process is also about character development. We are actually “playing other people.”
A: We are playing but it’s also very autobiographical at the same time.
Q: You guys move around a lot. What do you love most about playing your music in a new country?
A: Well, it’s always a surprise playing in a new place and having our audience singing with us, knowing the lyrics, knowing our songs. It’s very touching.
A: We’ve been on tour in South America, Peru, Colombia – places we’ve never been before. Our audience in Colombia was crazy, very expressive.
A: It’s very surprising how people can interact with you and your music in a place you’ve never been before. You can’t even imagine what it’s like. It’s surreal for me. I can’t understand the world and how our music travels through it to be honest.
In terms of location, I understand you recorded your latest album in Buenos Aires. How do you think location influences how the record turned out?
A: Sometimes it’s very contradictory because we work from our imagination, so we could be in the best place in Rio singing about nature or we could be in a very natural landscape and working with techno music, so in that sense physical location can either be irrelevant or even contradictory. I think we are often looking for contrast.
A: About Buenos Aires, inspiration might not be obvious. For example, our first record was made in Paris but in a way it’s really like the music from the southern United States, very nostalgic, very specific and not french in any way.
A: Actually we’ve performed a lot here, several records have been recorded here and it’s clearly inspiring but it also inspires our imagination to travel to other places.
Q: What do you like most about Buenos Aires in terms of places, experiences, the city, the cultural scene?
A: We love the food (laughs). We’ve had a lot to experiences in this place, but we’ve started to gain a feel for the city. For example, rollerskating at the park eating ice cream; simple little things we really enjoy. Also, drinking mate and being with friends is what we love most in Buenos Aires.Buenos Aires, The Clubhouse Network