Icona Pop: Before Way Out West

Aino Jawo and Caroline Hjelt met at one of Hjelt’s parties in 2009 and clicked instantly like magnets. The day after they started writing songs together and today they play electro pop all over the world. It’s something special about them, you can’t get enough. They are laid back, sympathetic, friendly and filled with energy. And everybody knows their name.

When I call Icona Pop I hear two happy and radiant sounding voices that make my heart melt. The sun is shining outside as we speak and they are making themselves ready for a day in the studio where they will work with their upcoming new album. And they’re also quite busy preparing their gig that will be held on Way out West later this week. Radar got the honor to chat with the fantastic duo about their thoughts on gigs, stage clothing and the preparations before Way out west.

You have a lot to do now, right?
– Yes it’s a lot, but it’s really fun!

You have recently been a part of two world tours, The Bangerz tour with Miley Cyrus and the Prismatic tour with Katy Perry. How was that?
Aino Jawo: It was a really cool experience; we performed in arenas bigger than Stockholm globe arena each night in four months. It’s such a huge difference to perform in smaller clubs and performing in front of almost 30.000 people that you try to reach one by one in a personal way, you really learn to handle a bigger audience. It was truly magical and incredibly inspiring.

Caroline Hjelt: We also have the luxury in making a lot of many different things; we play in everything from dark clubs in Berlin, EDM festivals to Pop tours. But the most fun with the bigger tours is that we all kind of become a big family which is really cool.

An Icona pop festival gig is absolutely like a punch in the face. We give everything!

So you never feel alone?
Both: No, exactly! We’re a big rolling circus family.

What can we expect from your upcoming gig on Way out West?
AJ: It will be a lot of energy, dancing and a huge love party. We have actually prepared some surprises that we unfortunately can’t reveal here, but I’ll tell you this; don’t miss it!

CH: Wow, we are so excited about this gig, it will be magical! We have so many friends that will be there and to play in Sweden is a luxury for us. It’s cool to perform in this environment; the nature and the mentality; there is something special about that.

icona by etoall

Does Way out West mean a lot to you?
CH: Yes a lot! We have been dancing and partying there but never performed anything.

AJ: So it has been quite a goal for us, therefore it will be so cool to close a stage.

How would you describe a typical Icona Pop gig?
CH: A bit like a punch in the face, she laughs. Anyway an Icona pop festival gig is absolutely like a punch in the face. We give everything!

AJ: It’s like having a relationship with us. From being in love, have a relationship, brake up and then everything ends. So people that listen to us probably experience a lot of heartache but what we have hidden in happy melodies.

The audience is simply a part of the show

That’s exactly what I’ve felt from your music, you can both laugh and cry to it. You write heartbreaking lyrics but with melodies you can’t stand still too.
Both: Yes, EXACTLY!

CH: It’s important for us to make the audience feel that we do the show together with them, because it wouldn’t be so fun if we stood there on stage and played for ourselves. The audience is simply a part of the show. Will you be at Way out West?

Both at the same time: YEEEEY!

Who makes your styling on stage?
CH: It depends a bit on what we’ll do, we are working with a great guy [Christopher Insulander] when we need some help with the styling but usually we dress ourselves.

AJ: We have helped a bit to design some of our own stage clothes as well, It’s important that you can be able to express yourself through your style too.

CH: If we’re on stage in clothes we don’t feel comfortable in the concert will be bad too.

AJ: The clothes must also be suitable for jumping, dancing and sweating!

Your gig is scheduled at Friday 8/8 21:00 at Way out West, what are your plans after that?
Both: First stop will definitely be Outkast!

CH: Also we hope to go on some party, we don’t want to sleep. Otherwise we maybe will have an after party at our hotel room or something.

What are you doing after the summer?
CH: Well we’re working on our new album right now, so we’re sort of putting it all together. Then we’re going on tour in the USA and we’re having our first South America tour. So we really have an exciting autumn to look forward to after this summer!

So this year has been quite OK then?
Both: Oh yeah, they laughs. We don’t have anything to complain about!


Photography by Fredrik Etoall

Icona Pop will have their gig on Friday 8/8 at Way Out West. For more info about their tours visit www.iconapop.com