(SXSW 2016 flavoured!) Quickfire Questions #104: Avec Sans

By on Wednesday, 9th March 2016 at 11:00 am

Ahead of SXSW in Austin next week, just as we have in the past 2 years of our preview coverage of the big dance, we’ll be bringing you showcasing artists’ answers to a special SXSW 2016 flavoured set of Quickfire Questions. Today, we’ve quizzed electronic duo Avec Sans to give us their answers, with singer Alice Fox answering the SXSW-specific questions first. Her partner in crime Jack St. James joins her for the rest. Our Rebecca introduced the London-based pair in this previous Bands to Watch back in January. Read on to find out what album the both of them remember hearing growing up, and what songs by previously featured on TGTF artists remind them of the first time they fell in love.

Describe your music / sound in three words. (We know, tricky…)
Dreamy happysad electropop.

What are you most looking forward to doing while you’re in Austin?
It’s been our dream to go to SXSW since we started playing in bands when we were in our early teens, so we’re going for the whole thing and just want to soak up as much as possible. We’re taking some friends along for the ride and we know it’s chaos, so we’re aiming to just be in it.

Of the bands who have already been announced, do you have any that are must-sees on your schedule? If yes, who are they and why?
We’ve never seen AlunaGeorge before so we’re keen to see them and Lapsley’s going and she’s a brilliant talent. I know we’re all keen to see what Bloc Party are like live these days and curious to see what Charli XCX and SOPHIE are up to. (I’ve attached a photo of SOPHIE taking the piss out of my hair.)

Avec Sans and SOPHIE

Name something you’re packing in your suitcase that we might find unusual. (You are welcome to elaborate.)
10 disposable cameras. We’re taking photos of the trip and leaving them undeveloped as part of our album pre-order. There could be anything on there.

If we happen to run into you in a bar, we’d like to buy you a drink. What is your tipple of choice?
Spiced rum and diet coke for me (Alice) and a cold beer for Jack, unless there’s a frozen margarita with a beer turned upside down in it, in that case, he’ll take one of those.

What have you heard about the festival? Are you excited / anxious / scared / etc. and why?
We’ve been out to play CMJ and also played in LA, so far our shows in America have been such an incredible experience and they’ve taken us to places we’d never thought we’d get the chance to go to. We’re so excited to play in Austin and in a dream world we’d play to some full rooms of people who are up for a good night out. We know it’s crowded at SXSW, so we’re going to have a great time no matter what. Hope to see you there.

Now, let’s get into our usual list of Quickfire Questions…

What song is your earliest musical memory?
We both remember Paul Simon’s ‘Graceland’ being played by our parents.

What was your favourite song as a child?
Alice: Jimmy Ruffin – ‘What Becomes of the Broken Hearted’. This is telling.
Jack: Green Day – ‘Dookie’.

What song makes you laugh?
Alice: Clarence Clarity‘s remix of Kate Boy’s ‘Midnight Sun’ made me laugh, he’s that brilliant and it’s that weird. I love it.
Jack: Hot Chip – ‘The Warning’. Geeks singing about taking people down.

What song makes you cry?
Alice: Bat for Lashes – ‘Sad Eyes’.
Jack: Death Cab for Cutie – ‘Transatlanticism’.

What song reminds you of the first time you fell in love? (It’s up to you if you want this to be sweet, naughty, etc.)
Alice: Bon Iver – ‘Skinny Love’.
Jack: Freelance Whales – ‘Generator First Floor’.

What song makes you think of being upset / angry? (Example: maybe you heard it when you were angry with someone and it’s still with you, and/or something that calms you down when you’re upset, etc.)
Alice: Taylor Swift – ‘Shake it Off’. I hate to dwell, and it makes it hard to stay mad.
Jack: MØ – ‘Kamikaze’.

Which song (any song written in the last century / 100 years or so) do you wish you’d written yourself?
Alice: The Beach Boys – ‘God Only Knows’.
Jack: ‘Happy Birthday’.

Who is your favourite writer? (This can be a songwriter or ANY kind of writer.)
Alice: Jon Ronson.
Jack: John Niven.

If you hadn’t become a singer/musician/songwriter/etc., what job do you think you’d be doing right now?
We fantasise about a world where we would have to rack our brains thinking what we’d be doing outside of music. We both work in creative industries as well as making music, we’re lucky that our jobs positively feed into each other. We’d love to run a label too.

If God said you were allowed to bring only one album with you to Heaven, which would it be and why? (Sorry, but double albums do not count.)
Alice: The Postal Service – ‘Give Up’, as it’s the most perfect and beautiful album ever made.
Jack: Green Day – ‘Dookie’. I’ve never got sick of it up until now, I can’t see myself getting sick of it.

Many thanks to the fantastic Avec Sans for answering our questions! You’ve got three chances to check them out at SXSW 2016: a DJ set on Wednesday, the 16th of March 16 at Speakeasy at 10 PM, followed by a live set around the corner at Lucky Lounge at 1 AM, then an appearance at the International Day Stage on Friday, the 18th of March at 2 PM.

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