Dominant sister duo Krewella have been making their mark on the EDM scene for years now, pumping out hit after hit while stil maintaining a distinctive enough style to keep them in high demand for festivals and headline shows across the globe. Coming off one of their busiest years yet, and a completely sold out tour North American tour, Jahan and Yasmine Yousaf plan to cap their 2016 by taking over Marquee Sydney‘s main room on New Year’s Eve, promising one of their characteristically sweaty, go-hard-or-go-home sets.
The one-off Australian show will give the girls a chance to road test some of their new material while taking Sydney’s club-loving crowd into 2017, while of course weaving in some of their hard-hitting, genre-twisting bangers to keep the energy at a steady high.
Ahead of the show, the AU review caught up with both members of Krewella to talk about reflect on the year that was, the direction their style is heading in, and just how they manage to keep grounded despite their tireless schedule.
You’re both as energetic as the fans at live shows. How do you pace yourself for longer sets so you don’t burn out?
Some of that energy is just infectious and happens when adrenaline kicks in on stage, some of it is nurtured throughout the day as we have created a system for taking care of our bodies and health on the road. Even though it’s hard to find healthy food away from home, we try to clean eat and maintain paleo (no grains, sugar, corn, gluten, etc). We don’t eat big meals or drink alcohol before live shows, we workout or go for jogs, we stretch and do vocal warm ups. Since being around a lot of people on tour can be very stimulating, it’s also really important to make time to decompress in our hotel rooms alone before we put our energy out into the world, even if it’s just reading a book.
There’s been a lot of touring for you two lately with the Sweatbox Tour, what have been some of highlights for you as performers?
The Sweatbox Tour was such a unique experience. It was such a pleasure to within arms reach of our die hard fans, all packed in tiny legendary punk rock venues. There is nothing more rewarding than seeing fans screaming lyrics to new songs. It never gets old. Every night on the tour I was like, “Wait you guys actually know that song??” It reminds of when we first started coming up in Chicago, makes me feel nostalgic, and I’ll never take that feeling for granted!
I guess NYE in Sydney will be not just another show for you guys but a celebration of a hugely successful, and busy, year. What can the fans expect from you guys at Marquee Sydney and what do you expect from the fans?
We haven’t played in Australia in so damn long! The more time that goes by, the more the excitement builds up. When we were first coming up, I still remember a club show we played where there were only a few dozen fans in the crowd since we were the openers, and they were all sitting in the corners. I feel like this NYE in Sydney will be a good indicator of how things have changed since then, how we’ve grown as artists, and how fans spread the word about us in Australia over the past few years. We can’t wait to throw down an energetic set with originals, remixes, and some of our favourite throwbacks and fresh tunes.
You’ve been to Sydney a few times. What are your favourite things to do in this city when not at a show?
We actually only had a couple hours off on the day of a show a few years back. I went for a run around the Opera House, which is where the hotel was. I do remember it just being gorgeous but really populated. I definitely plan on exploring more and stepping outside the usual this time around, it’s in my blood. Every time I’m in a foreign city, I have to see everything I possibly can even if it’s only for a few hours. I just want memories of every place.
And you’ve just released the music video for “Team”, does that mean a new EP is on its way soon? And what do you feel “Team” specifically adds to your collection of singles?
We plan on dropping single after single in the New Year! Currently there are several songs on deck that are just being wrapped. We’re so excited about what we’re creating, it was a long time coming to develop the current sound but we always had a feeling that patience would pay off. “Team” brings some light, positivity, and confidence to our current catalogue. It feels really fresh. It’s also a taste of what’s to come, with the blend of electronic elements with organic, tribal percussion.
As a duo who manage to balance so many textures and sounds, and do it well, what genres/sounds do you feel are the most difficult to incorporate into a track and which ones are you leaning towards at the moment? On the flip side, which genres/sounds are you leaning away from if any?
Since we grew up with such a versatile plethora of genres, probably because the post-modern era we live in, both us are so excited and influenced by all kinds of colors and textures and palettes. In the past couple years, we got a chance to experiment and try out sounds in the studio ranging from a hybrid rock and rave vibe, to a more cultural pop-dance sound.
It took a while to purge all our visions to nail the right one, but I think we found a happy medium between incorporating electric guitar, hip hop and tribal percussion, and dance synths. Now that we have a palette to work with, we have a clearer idea of what elements to blend together. So I think it’s less about ‘avoiding’ certain sounds or genres, and it’s actually about being more open to experimenting in the studio. I’d rather try everything and anything and then scale back later. I feel like we’ve grown more as artists by creating less rules and just saying ‘yes’ to more in the studio.
Can we expect any more new material on NYE?
We’ll definitely give some new tunes a test drive at Marquee Sydney!
And since we’re on the subject of NYE, what are Krewella’s resolutions for 2017 and what goals/resolutions did you tick off throughout 2016?
We haven’t even thought about resolutions yet! I think really staying on top of our health was a mutual goal of ours between lifting, running, hiking, eating healthy, with a little bit of celebrating here and there as a reward.
General entry tickets to NYE at Marquee Sydney are going for $100pp (+bf). For the cashed-up partygoers there are also “VIP Krew” tickets available, featuring express escorted entry, premium canapés, a superior beverage package, and VIP backstage access. All tickets purchased to NYE with Krewella will go in the draw to win a getaway to LA for two and party at the various Tao Group hotspots, plus accommodation at the brand new opulent Dream Hollywood hotel. For more information and bookings head to the Marquee Sydney website HERE.
This event is included in our New Year’s Eve in Sydney guide, which you can view HERE.