Music Interview: Jealousy makes world go round

By Jaime Burnet

Inevitably, people will change as time goes by, and one of the most noticeable indications of this change is music. A shift in style doesn’t necessarily mean a shift in musical values, but can be the product of the self-assurance gained with experience. Two years since their last release, sisters Tegan and Sara have come a long way with their new album, So Jealous.

“There’s obviously a natural growth that happens,” says Tegan. “Sara and I are 24 this year and it’s not that we feel old or anything, but we definitely feel more mature and a little more confident.”

Aside from confidence, the complexity and depth of the new CD, as compared to 2002’s If It Was You, is a result of circumstance. Obviously the title track, with its electronic and synth elements, couldn’t have been recorded on a Yak Bak.

“As we have a bigger budget, more time and more confidence, we were able to add to the record a lot more. So I think not so much our musical style or our taste in music is different, it’s mostly just our approach to recording music. It’s so much more in depth and intricate now.”

Although the recording process may have become more involved, Tegan and Sara’s lyrics have always been complex and personal, dealing with loneliness, rejection, and love. For most people, articulating and sharing their emotions is difficult enough, never mind recording those personal experiences, or singing them out to a live audience.

“I’m really glad that we write from personal experience and are more biographical, because it allows us to be excited, to re-experience those things. We try to be not too specific so people can picture themselves in those situations, but it doesn’t really make me feel bad that people might be thinking of us.”

Their ability is to not only evoke emotions, but to embody the feelings of those who listen to it. Songs written by other people can be personal, and for Tegan, that holds true even for the music written by her sister.

“I have no negative feelings about it,” Tegan says of singing backup lyrics to Sara’s songs. “We’ve seen each other go through so much that a lot of times when Sara’s writing about her personal experiences, I’ve sort of experienced it too. I kind of feel like I’m a fan of her music. I’m doing what most people do when they listen to music, pretending its me. I just try to disassociate from the fact that it’s Sara.”

People change and the world goes on. In this case, it spins more smoothly. The quality and originality of Tegan and Sara’s music makes it something that you want to listen to, whether you wish you hadn’t experienced, or wish you could experience the love the girls sing about, and all the shit that goes along with it.

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