Being in the same quarters as The Veronicas, namely Lisa and Jessica Origliasso, is transformative.
Unsurprisingly as twins they’re dichotomous on- and offstage. Petite, feisty, easy-going and warm – immediately recognisable in their own right. After listening to their chart topping latest single “In My Blood” (official music video in header) released in June this year, I couldn’t see this album as the “comeback” I’d presumed, simply because it feels as though they never quite left. They are still the same two Italian grrls who traversed through all the noise of a youth that so strongly echoed ours, turned that noise into timeless pop punk, all the while setting the road map on fire and wearing their scars like funky patches on a jacket.
How we know this much of them has not changed is because during the opening night of Music Matters, swanky new music venue Millian Singapore was packed with the young and younger practically screaming along to The Veronicas’ songs of old like Untouched and When It All Falls Apart. Don’t even get us started on 4ever. Losing myself in that crowd whilst reunited with an ex-secondary schoolmate was the pinnacle of teenhood relived. Amplified.
In our abridged chat with Lisa and Jess below you’ll get a sense of their evolvement in more ways than one, their resilience in the face of utter heartbreak, and ability to turn the most bizarre stories into relevant art – that Popwire was truly humbled to experience. For now, read on to delve past their stage selves and into two identically real, seasoned free spirits and souls.
On being in Singapore since their first and last time eight years ago:
L: We met a bunch of fans who had been following us, you know, from the very beginning – some ten, eleven years now so that was such a rush for us. And we’ve had a little time to explore as well! So we went to a Hindu and Buddhist temple to pray. We’ve gone to antique stores – Jess found some amazing treasures…
J: Found a teapot that was like, handpainted in golden dragons from the nineteen fifties!
I bet it cost a bomb.
Both: Oh yeah it did.
L: We spent some money – she dropped some money.
J: I did. I was in Singapore for 3 hours and spent… a lot of money. But look I usually spend on anything except food.
L: I think when it’s antiques as well, we love to explore the city and find those really special pieces. I always think when I’m an old lady and I’m sitting around at home, and I’m not traveling as much any more, I’ll look at all these things from all my favourite place and I’ll always remember like, “That teapot was from that trip to Singapore!”
And we’ve met some beautiful people like, that antique store we went to was owned by three generations of family and they invited us to the back room to have tea. And they ended up telling us their whole family history, and how…
J: I’ll show you a photo! -whips out phone- It’s amazing. We sat with them for an hour and a half just chatting and they kept pouring us tea, I had eight cups of (Chinese) tea that day.
L: So we’ve had an incredible trip so far. We feel like we really connected on a soul level with Singapore.
Q: What’s the new album like?
L: It’s got that sort of lyrical sophistication to it as to where we are as women. Obviously we’ve had a lot of experiences, but it’s the progression from teen angst, throwing our feelings out there sort of recklessly, to being able to express ourselves a lot better. As in not better, but in a…
J: More complex fashion.
L: Yeah. And having the confidence to be vulnerable now. To show that side of ourselves instead of having to put up that wall or that front – so punk rock and cool. I mean we have that; that is always gonna be who we are. But as you become more comfortable with yourself as a woman, you find power and strength in vulnerability. And being able to say, “I don’t feel the strongest today. Actually I’m heartbroken – let’s write about that.”
It’s not just angry types of heartbreaks and love, it’s reflective, or it’s introspective. It’s beautiful and sometimes it’s sad and it’s letting things go. So all those different facets sort of just come with just living life. It’s been a learning experience to write about it.
So that album it’s honest, real but it’s also very hypnotic atmospheric electro.
On the Sony Music studio in Sydney they write songs in:
J: When you step into that studio, especially with those guys (co-writers DNA) we feel comfortable. So we’ve really experienced all different types of emotions in that studio. There’s nothing that we hide or keep secret. We’ve screamed at each other – you know, fist fights, we’ve cried, we’ve laughed. We’ve talked about every single thing you can possibly imagine in that studio with those guys so it is a real safe haven for us to just let it all out. And that’s why we’ve got a song like You Ruin Me, and on the flip end of that, you know a song like In My Blood – they’re very different stylistically, but they come from that same place.
You Ruin Me, The Veronicas’ self-titled album (2014)
Q: So is that where you’re writing from now, in Sydney?
L: Umm, no actually, we’ve been all over the place. We’ve been doing a lot of writing in London, actually. And in Los Angeles, and in Sydney Australia.
Q: Where is your favourite most conducive place to write, then?
L: Oh no.
J: That’s tricky! I think the cool thing is because it’s always with each other, we can change the scenery because that inspires different things, I think we like to travel and write in different places. We’ve never really written in one place for a whole record. And I think because we like to draw so much inspiration from our surroundings we like to change it up depending on our mood.
L: It’d be nice to come here (Singapore) and do some writing, actually.
J: We’d be holidaying too hard. We could write; it could be like, really happy, cruisy songs. Or! Maybe like, during a tropical rainforest storm like they have here – it’d be an acoustic. Some sad tropical…
On making time for charity work and giving back:
J: I always feel the happiest when I am able to make someone else feel happy. Truly I’ve had some heavy, dark times, and the way out of it is always to make it about someone else. To give to them; that’s when I feel the most love.
L: It’s really cool to use our music to promote those efforts.
J: And I think that’s what it’s about – what the world needs is getting out of ourselves and it being all about us, and our comfort zones. Often our comfort zones can become a prison of ignorance. And I think the more we go out and meet other people, share and listen to their experiences; we see that we are all one. We are together, and in this together. So go experience other cultures.
Too often when we’re on our phones or obsessing over really trivial things – at the end of the day it doesn’t matter. When I’m on my deathbed I’m not going to be thinking about how many likes I got on a photo, or if someone thought I looked good that day.
Q: How would you like The Veronicas to be remembered?
L: As passionate, empowered… people.
I like that you didn’t say “women”, because we’re all people fundamentally.
Both: Yes… as passionate, empowered souls. People that share love.
J: And to be completely honest, I’d rather people not remember us for our lives but rather for the way we made them feel. I mean I don’t really care what people think of us as much as how they experienced what I can give them.
L: I hope they always experience feeling loved and valued, or even if our music makes them able to switch off from anything else that day just to feel good. Just have fun. That would mean a lot to us.
And switch off we will, to this stripped down version of In My Blood – an adequate snapshot in time of their making ageless easy-come-easy-go music that hits hard despite. In our minds The Veronicas are 4ever.
Follow The Veronicas on their collectively larger-than-life journeys on Instagram and Facebook. Their album is in the works and slated for release early next year. Click on the banner below to get their latest single from the upcoming album.
Photos in this post are by Alexandra for Popwire unless otherwise stated.