Interview: Teengirl Fantasy
They're playing at Goodgod this Saturday night!
You may remember some of your fantasies as a teenage girl. Mine included starring alongside Tammin Sursok in Home & Away and having my first pash with Taylor from Hanson on a beach at sunset. Obviously neither of these scenarios eventuated, but a girl can dream. Possibly inspired by this sort of adolescent nostalgia, Logan Takahashi and Nick Weiss decided to call their band Teengirl Fantasy. The Brooklyn-based duo met while they were studying at Oberlin College, bonding over their love of classic house. Their single 'Cheaters', appearing on their debut album 7AM, was named best song of 2010 by Fact Magazine. Since then they've toured with Crystal Castles and played the 2011 All Tomorrow's Parties festival curated by Animal Collective, as well as collaborating with Panda Bear and Daft Punk vocalist Romanthony. They're currently in town having just played at Melbourne Music Week. We caught up with them before their show at Goodgod tomorrow night (see details below).
Leesa Gallaher: What have you boys been up to of late?
Nick Weiss: Touring! We just got back from a month in Europe, now we're in Australia and then we're off NZ, and then Miami for Art Basel!
Do you get to do the touristy thing aside from playing shows?
Nick: Rarely... We like to see the main touristy stuff if we can but honestly the funnest part about traveling and touring is meeting people and checking out what the parties are like in every city... And also eating.
Logan Takahashi: It's always the best when we have some downtime in a city and can take our time to see some things. We have some downtime in Australia and New Zealand on this upcoming tour. I really want to try to go snorkeling.
You should — Clovelly is perfect for that in Sydney! Tell us about the latest LP, Tracer?
Nick: Tracer is our first big release since graduating from school. We put a lot of time and effort into it which hopefully shows.
Logan: We really wanted to release something that worked as a cohesive piece that flows together as one, and I think we succeeded.
Did you ever think you'd be working with Romanthony? How did that come about?
Nick: Working with Romanthony was a total pipe dream. Making it happen just took a lot of contact back and forth between us and him. What helped the situation I think is that he seemed to be really into our music which feels really cool.
So who is your dream vocalist to work with?
Nick: We've talked about this before, but we'd love to work with someone really current and big like Drake. Our absolute dream vocalist is Sade though!
Logan: Yeah, both of these, and we're also always down to make some beats for rappers.
I read that you went on tour with Animal Collective in lieu of your final semester of college. What was that like? Were your friends mad jealous?
Nick: We missed our finals, yeah. It was totally worth it obviously. They were super nice guys and it was definitely eye opening to see how they manage to balance their lives and stay super grounded and normal even though their project has gained a life of its own.
Logan: For me it was kind of like a high school dream come to true to tour with them. I had always been a big fan of them growing up, and their approach to music has been pretty influential on me. They're probably my favorite band of the past decade.
It's very 90s. So is the music video for 'Cheaters'. Is this 90s nostalgia intentional?
Nick: The music video for 'Cheaters' was made by the legendary new age composer and artist Iasos, so the aesthetic is 100% genuine. I don't think he thinks of his work in terms of '90s,' the look is just kind of what comes out of the software he uses.
Logan: When I was a kid I was really into this video series called Beyond the Mind's Eye that I got from the local science museum. The aesthetic of this video is super early CGI and reminds me a lot of recent trends in internet/tumblr aesthetics. I don't think that this resurgence is like a harkening back to the way things used to be, but more of a result of the way that aesthetic trends work in cycles.
What's with your Angelfire website? It's like a creepy GIF shrine by a 13-year-old girl...
Nick: Yes, our friend Cordelia Alquist made that with us. We were originally gunning to be a boyband so that's where it came from ...
Logan: Ha, not as much musically, but kind of jokingly conceptually or something.
In one of the posts on your site a 13-year-old dreams about Teengirl serenading her. She says it sounds like "rainbow ice cream with cherries on it and mint chocolate chip." Is this an accurate portrayal?
Nick: At times...
There is also a chatroom. Let's pretend we're in a chatroom. My username is UnicornLyf91, what are yours?
Nick: shakeithard and takahottie.
Teengirl Fantasy are playing at Goodgod in Sydney tomorrow night, Saturday 1 December. They'll be supported by Movement, Gardland, Discopunx, Astral DJs. The night begins at 11pm and tickets are $20 on the door.
Introduction: Ingrid Kesa
Interview: Leesa Gallaher