– Here’s a statement that you don’t get to hear very often from a band that basically consists of only two members: „We feel like we’re a stadium...Read Biography
Here’s a statement that you don’t get to hear very often from a band that basically consists of only two members: „We feel like we’re a stadium rock band!“
Normally, to utter such a phrase you’d have to have an ego big enough to stage a production of „Aida“ on it. Or the sort of confidence that hasn’t been touching ground in quite a while. Probably you could pull it off if you happen to be one of the brothers in Oasis – who when it comes to boasting truly seem to have mastered the class. Then again, there is also a brand of musician brothers who exist that don’t go for each other’s throats, don’t heave abuse on the other publically or threaten to punch their sibling in the face. Such a type of brothers that even after an exhausting day in the rehearsal room or the recording studio still think about music rather than murder. The sort that draw so much energy from their collaboration, all they need is the big stage to let it all (hang) out.
That famous statement about the stadium rock band was made when Sinplus recently supported Roxette live in concert and played in front of enthusiastic crowds numbering some 10,000 people. The success of the Swedish duo symbolises the sort of career Sinplus have in mind for themselves, and it’s easy to see how much sense that makes for a band that counts U2, Muse, Coldplay, 30 Seconds To Mars and Imagine Dragons among their biggest influences (and whose live line-up is accordingly bumped up to four people on stage). Perhaps the way to the top is a bit longer when you’re starting out from Locarno in the southeastern corner of Switzerland, but the Broggini brothers have already put in some mileage. Furthermore, they have a new album out soon that’s written entirely in capital letters.
„Really we’ve been in a band since we were kids“, says Ivan. For these brothers music has always been a family affair. Their mother is a big Bob Marley fan and was lucky enough to have even seen him at a live performance back in the day. Their father used to play in a band of his own and built himself a rehearsal space that Sinplus have usurped by now. And their sister acts as manager of the band. „With a lot of rock musicians it’s Me against the world“, says Gabriel. „With us, it’s at least two the world has coming at it.“
And it is all carried out in a very professional way, too. Study trips to Vancouver and San Diego made sure that the brothers from the Italian-speaking part of Switzerland are very proficient in English (German is also no problem). If they’re temporarily lost for a particular word, they might come up with adjectives like „fantabulous“ to bridge the gap – which coincidentally describes very aptly the sound Sinplus are going for. It’s a sound the brothers honed in recording studios from Los Angeles to London and that is exactly why they are self-assured enough by now to answer a question like: „Who or what are Sinplus?“ as proclaimed in the confident title of this album: „This Is What We Are“.
In case your electricity is down at the moment and the accompanying CD can’t be played, here’s the gist of it:
Sinplus make pop music with very big and very enthusiastic melodies that stylistically soars over everything the modern musical landscape has to offer. Soaring is a particularily fitting expression because listening to these songs feels like watching clouds from above with the wind under your wings. Into the mix the duo absorb various influences ranging from alternative rock to discopop, even incorporating the odd hip-hop element. Their learning-by-doing approach has made them come up with an entirely new beast – one that’s got a keen lust for life. Practically all the songs on the new record sound like they should be played in a getaway car. You don’t even have to commit a crime first (As long as enjoying yourself isn’t illegal).
Lyrically, the quest for freedom is a central topic – on various levels. „If there’s a message to our songs it might be: There’s a power within you – go ahead and use it!“, Ivan says. „Listen to your dreams“ or „Be yourself and do what you love“ would also work as a motto, because for Sinplus a positive attitude is key to their music. That weird, unfamiliar feeling indie-rock fans and guitar balladeers get on the first listen? That’s optimism. Or, as the title track has it: „We believe that everything is now.“
The professional arsenal the brothers command includes most instruments known to man, but still positively favours the electric guitar. Opener „Capisci“ for example boasts a solo you wouldn’t mind listening to for, say, 15 minutes. That’s out of the question though, because momentarily the instrument changes into The Edge („Feel Love“), the Red Hot Chili Peppers („WTF“) and Bob Marley’s ghost („Kiss The Sky“). And because classic rock to Ivan and Gabriel is already played out as a formula, songs like „Crazy Life“ or „Capisci“ have been transformed into disco hybrids that make it impossible not to get up and dance. What genre these original (and self-produced) songs should fall into is anybody’s guess – but just to be on the safe side, better add a „power-“ to whatever you want to call it.
According to Gabriel, „we want to inspire people to follow their dreams“, and what better way to do that than by playing a style of music that supplies enough dreamy melodies to one day really fill a stadium. Sinplus are well on their way: Having performed to international audiences in 15 different countries, in 2014 the duo received the prestigious MTV award for Best Swiss Act. And then there was „Unbreakable“, their good-natured entry into the Eurovision Song Contest, an event that still secures the band fanmail from Russia and photographic evidence of skin tattood with their lyrics.
As for the future, Sinplus are geared-up to take their show on the road, because making the audience part of the live experience is their ultimate goal. If they have their way, you’ll leave the concert slightly dizzy but with new-found confidence and a spring in your step, because the songs on „That Is What We Are“ are to the human soul what a charger is to a battery. Or rather petrol to a pyromaniac. That stadium rock band Ivan and Gabriel are dreaming of might still need a bit of backdrop – but with the new album that’s coming to stores in January they have produced a record to substantiate their ambition.
2017 could turn out to be their year.