With the release of seventh album Heartthrob indie rock twins Tegan And Sara have taken a decided shift in the "pop" direction.
It was no accident.
"I think that we have found a way to continue to do what we do and take more of the abstract, esoteric sort of left-leaning music that we listen to and that sort of comes out naturally when we write music, and then sort of take the influences of what's happening in pop culture right now and some of the artists that we love — like Alicia Keys and Robyn — and we can sort of say if we cross those two things where we're going to end up and will that sort of remove that black feeling we've had," says Sara Quin explaining how the pair built the songs on Heartthrob in a video interview. "We know that we could be reaching a broader audience if we changed a few little variables."
Sara isn't particularly worried about losing fans because of their poppier new sound, either.
"We have to keep pushing forward or we become a parody of ourselves," says Sara. "I don't want to lose people in our fan base, but I don't want them to direct our career. I want to direct our career. The right people are going to stay with us and the people who grow bored or are going to hate us, or maybe they're just into banjo music now… that's natural, that's a natural thing. To shed that a little bit is OK."
There was also another reason for making a poppier sounding album, according to Tegan Quin. Happiness.
"A few years ago one of our diehard long-time fans just came up to me and straight up was like 'How are you going to write a good record? You're happy, you're in a long-term relationship,'" says Tegan. "And I remember feeling really offended by that because I'm actually much more productive when I'm happy than when I'm sad, so I was like, 'Actually, you should be glad I'm happy.'"