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The Veronicas on Gothic Summer, Queer Kinship, and Twintuition

Jackson Rickun
Senior Copywriter
March 22, 2024
April 16, 2024
min. read
Table of Contents

The first time our Wi-Fi cut out, I started to panic. The third time, I contemplated a career change. Jessica and Lisa Origliasso, known better as The Veronicas, had only 20 minutes to chat with Grindr about their new album, Gothic Summer, and their upcoming whirlwind of a tour kicking off April 3rd—and we had enough questions to last hours. But in a way, the shitty Wi-Fi was like a cosmic homage to the mid-aughts—a nostalgic echo to simpler times, right around when 'Untouched' laid bare a particular pop-punk blueprint in 2007. Go figure.

Eventually, their faces flickered on-screen. "Hi Angels," they chimed, like ordering coffee, not conquering charts. The Origliasso sisters are pure Aussie sunshine. They didn't even skip a beat. Maybe fame at its core is just figuring out how to Zoom without wanting to hurl yourself out a window.

Throughout our chat, they said that Gothic Summer was less an album and more an explosion of creative chaos. Their unplanned recording sessions with pop-punk mastermind John Feldmann (of 5 Seconds of Summer, Blink-182, and Avril Lavigne fame) produced a dizzying, genre-bending album.

But somehow, amidst the funk and trip-hop detours, The Veronicas never lose their voice. That's the thing about them—they have a commitment to raw honesty, even when the musical package keeps shifting. Perhaps that's why their fierce advocacy for the LGBTQ+ community resonates so strongly; they embrace being messy and contradictory, all the things pop music often tries to sand down.

They also sat with us for 40 minutes—hard outs be damned.

The following is an interview with The Veronicas, where they sat down with Grindr to discuss "Gothic Summer" and their upcoming tour, which kicks off on April 3rd. This interview has been edited for clarity.

I love the phrase 'Gothic Summer.’ Can you talk me through that?

Gothic summer, you know, a lot of the overarching theme, the umbrella theme for it, was really “go with love and be the master of your destiny,” and for us, that just felt like this subconscious message that kept wanting to come through.

It was a sort of purging on a subconscious level—not a laborious sort of pulling-stuff-out level or having to let go of something. It was more "This is where we're at now." It felt a little bit like a celebration and a closure of empowerment for ourselves, this perspective that we've come to.

Purging is a pretty strong word. Tell me more about that feeling. What did you purge?

The Veronicas is an outlet for a certain part of our personalities, which is a little bit more about our extroverted selves. And I would say it's a really healthy space to express that. So the purging… I think it's where we express the dramatics of music, the dirt, the feelings, the emotions, the "whatever we need to feel and work through." We've thrown it all at The Veronicas. And it seems to be this larger-than-life character that we can step into and experience, and that's really fun. And for us personally, it saved our lives countless times to have that place to be able to put it all.

So that’s The Veronicas. What happens when you step out of their shoes?

Well then it’s just Lisa and Jess. On the beach and in the jungle on our acoustic guitars, singing harmonies, Nana’s baking scones… it’s very much a different creative cave. But when we get to imagine the world and step into the universe, we tend to be a little more shocking. It would be the worst for someone to say, “That’s a really nice record.” You know, we want to move people and inspire something out of them. So The Veronicas has always been our baby to do that and create that world.

Talk to me about pop punk. Music outlets have cited you as the mid-aughts blueprint for pop punk. Does it feel trippy to see pop punk as one of the more dominant genre forms in the mid 2020s?

I think it's a huge honor if we're being cited in any capacity in a blueprint form. And I think, you know, it's funny because I think when you're talking about any genre, there are very obvious musical elements, but a lot of it also is attitude. And aesthetic. And personality. In the rock space, it was predominantly occupied by men—straight men. So we love seeing over the last 18 years, how music and culture have grown into more alternative perspectives, greater diversity, you know. It's incredible. It's so fantastic. Also, how it’s continued to expand and grow into so many different forms for people to stretch and express themselves—it’s very cool.

Right, and especially in the queer community. Speaking of, you’ve found a big following in the queer community. Why do you think that is?

We were raised by very strong-headed women, you know, and were deeply ingrained within the LGBT community because our family and best friends were predominantly LGBT. We've also sung a lot in our lyrics about Jess's own journey and personal experiences with her sexuality. So, you know, for us, I think we came in with this quite alternative perspective. Our shows immediately were like-minded individuals who were rolling with us and getting to know themselves, and it was about creating a safe space for people to be able to explore who they were through our music. It's funny, it wasn't even overly conscious at the time. We were just given a platform to be able to be there with our community. And so we feel really, really blessed. We feel really, really lucky.

You’re gearing up for a tour kicking off on April 3rd. What’s your favorite part of performing? What do you want people to know?

A lot of people have fallen in love at our shows. So our live shows are definitely a good space for any of the queer community to come along and meet like minded people. I always say if anybody's worried about coming alone, don't be worried. Our fans and the community and the people that come out to see our shows are always the kindest, most open hearted open arms. In terms of this album, we want people to feel the message of self empowerment and self love. That’s the underlying subconscious message of this entire album, but it's also the very obvious message of this album.

Alright, one more for fun. You’ve mentioned how, since you are twins, you can communicate really well. From an early age, did you guys pick up on this communication?

That’s such a cool question. I think it’s a testament to your soul coming into this life with a twin, with essentially your soulmate. We have some footage documented from when we must have been barely one year old, and our parents have a setup and a little bassinet. And we're using our feet to bounce each other in time, perfect time. And I think that bouncing and that noise, that communication… I don't know if we were subconsciously or consciously doing that, but it was like the beginning of our special language that we have with each other. When you’re a twin, you feel each other even when you’re not together. It’s an incredibly special connection to have with someone.

Watch the video for "Here to Dance" below.

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