Date: August 12, 2005
Author: Katrina Lobley
Publication: The Sydney Morning Herald
Headline: Don't Call Us Baby
Tegan and Sara would like their fans to know something. They are not sex objects, OK? The 24-year-old identical Quin twins from Canada might be cute, gay and charming onstage as they sing their punk-pop songs of tortured love, but they want to be the objects of your affection only up to a point.
"Sometimes it's funny because someone yells out, 'I want to have your babies!' and you'll be in the right mood, the right spirit," Tegan says. "You'll be like, 'How do you know you want my babies? Maybe I have some horrible genetic thing.' Then the crowd laughs and it puts them in their place a little bit.
"But for Sara and I, when someone yells, 'Take your shirt off' - and usually it's a girl - it's not that it offends me, it's that it confuses me. Sara and I are up there trying to progress the female movement and to prove that females can be up there with guys, but probably if someone yelled at a guy, 'I love you', 'I want to have your babies' or 'You're so hot, take your shirt off', the guy wouldn't care. But for us, we're still trying to undo centuries of objectification and oppression. And it's interesting because it's coming from the female side."
Tegan says she and her sister have found that "the sexism and the homophobia in this industry is rampant".
How does the homophobia display itself?
"Well, you know, [English music magazine] NME giving us a good review, saying we're quite lovely even though we don't love cock," she says. "So basically, replace 'They don't like cock' with 'They're quite lovely even though they're lesbians'.
"So there's that stigma [where people write]: 'Everybody would love this band but it's probably just going to be girls who like them.' It's like, 'Whoa, why don't you call us ugly, fat, crappy? You're cutting us right down.'"
Tegan says their fan base isn't confined to women.
"Now we're getting played on alternative rock radio in the US, I swear our audience is not only expanding exponentially but it's also becoming incredibly diverse," she says.
"There are more guys - it has become 50-50 overnight."
Then, of course, there's the twin thing.
"There's a societal stigma that twins are one human being and that transfers over to us writing," Tegan says. "People are like, 'I can't tell the difference between you, I can't tell the difference between your songs.'"
Tegan says some people go from show to show and "bootleg our stories, not our songs".
"Other people email and ask, 'What happened to the cat?' because we told a story about our cat but didn't finish it.
A week later we'll finish the story - we're like a TV show."
TEGAN AND SARA
Annandale Hotel, 17 Parramatta Road, Annandale
Bookings 9550 1078
They also support Little Birdy at the Metro Theatre on August 25