The Twelves, Brazil's Daft Punk, On Remixing Indie Rock for the Dancefloor

Categories: Hey, DJ!
The Twelves
Who doesn't love a Brazilian? The answer to that question might be "many people." But no matter your preference, you'll agree that even better than one Brazilian is a pair of Brazilians with immense musical talent. From Rio de Janiero, the acclaimed duo of João Miguel and Luciano Oliveria, known as the Twelves, seemed destined to unite -- their namesake is inspired by both of their birthdays being July 12, 1980. Making renowned remixes from indie favorites such as Yelle and Two Door Cinema Club, The Twelves help justify those who wear neon spandex to clubs. Watch them shred the dancefloor this Saturday at Mezzanine with DJ White Mike and Nisus opening.

The Twelves have been called "Brazil's answer to Daft Punk." Do you think that's a fair characterization of who you guys are as performers?

I think it's fair, as they were probably one of our biggest inspirations when we were getting our affairs in order. It's amazing if we are labeled as that because it would be a great honor to be in the same category as those guys.

You guys seem to be drawn to indie-rock acts when selecting tracks to remix. What new rock artists have been sparking your attention of late?

It's not necessarily about the genre, although having both been in a rock band we have a special love for the genre. Mostly it is about the quality and harmony of the vocal. If you have that as a starting point, then you have the basis for a good track. To be honest, we've been in the studio so much it's hard to remember what sunlight feels like, let alone what new acts are rocking the stadiums (laughs).

Also, do you ever get tired of hearing "known for their breakthrough mix for M.I.A's Boyz?"

Not at all. The fact of the matter is it was tracks like that that got us to this point. Without these and the blog support, we would be nothing, so we are happy to have that on our resume and will continue to be proud of the track and what we have achieved since.

Do you guys ever have the urge to just bust out and start dancing during your own sets?

We've been known to have a little sly groove when we think no one's looking! No, in all honesty, there are so many things to think about with the laptops and keyboards that often a gig is over in the blink of an eye because you have been concentrating so hard.

What's a misconception people have about your performances, especially those in huge venues where people can't really see what you're doing?

That we program our sets into the laptop. A lot of people seem to think that because they cannot see us physically switching tracks like a vinyl DJ that we just record a set into our laptops and then play it through the soundsystem. Maybe we should start doing shows with our backs to the crowd so they can see all the crazy stuff going on in the monitors trying to keep everything in time.

Many DJ duos wear masks. If you guys could choose a mask to don, what would it be?

Maybe I could wear a picture of Luciano's face and he could wear a picture of mine? So long as it's not made of nylon and makes your face sweat it's all good!

The pretty awesome coincidence of your birthdays must have you guys throwing epic birthday parties, no?

Oh yes! Although the last couple of years we have been touring so we end up having one massive party with the promoters and then another one when we get home to Rio. We hit 30 last year, so I guess we'll have to start thinking about slowing down soon enough.

What's the weirdest request you guys have gotten?

I don't know really. Sometimes people might not know exactly who we are and ask for something "a little bit harder," meaning hardcore or something like that, which we politely refuse.

What's one thing you guys can't live without when on tour?

My iPhone. I can't even tell you how many times this little device has saved my life.

Since you're playing the ginormous gala more commonly known as Coachella, are there any acts you guys are looking forward to personally seeing?

It'd be great to see the Two Door Cinema Club guys. The Strokes would be great as well, as we've heard they are great live. Some of our Brasilieiros are there, too, like DJ Marky. The lineup looks amazing, so we'll be there for the full three days soaking up as much as we can.

Are you guys going to be debuting anything new at the Mezzanine this Saturday?

Well that would be telling! Come along and check us out!

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444 Jessie, San Francisco, CA

Category: Music

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Chris H.
Chris H.

fcking LOVE The Twelves! Thanks for the interview I'm soooo stoked for the show!!!!

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