04 Aug Axolotes Mexicanos
Interview and Photography: Zazi White
Olaya and Juan are twins. She and Stephen met in high school. This is how most interviews and reviews about Axolotes Mexicanos start. They formed four years ago, so there’s no point anymore in talking about their adolescence. They left their parent’s home a while ago and are already living adult lives. Olaya is about to get a Fine Arts degree and is looking for work; Stephen has a steady job in a trends magazine and Juan is a cook intern at a luxury hotel. He is also responsible for the new songs by Axolotes Mexicanos (he also does some trap with his friends), which he produce in his bedroom.
Two halves of the band answered to these questions (Juan is a man of few words) about the band, their lives and the things Axolotes Mexicanos truly like.
How would you define yourselves in a few words? And what about Axolotes Mexicanos?
Stephen: Super nice. And Axolotes a failed and hispanized attempt at j-pop.
Olaya: A guy said once I was like a cabbage. Axolote is a band made up of very nice people.
When you visit Villaxolote you may find Olaya playing old rap in the living room while Juan is locked in his room playing League of Legends and listening to j-pop. Stephen also plays in a beach garage band called No Fucks. You are quite eclectic people. Could you each tell me a band or an album that has made an impact in your lives, one on your personal top?
Stephen: t.A.T.u, Himeyuri, Shinsei Kamattechan, PC Music.
Olaya: You said something about old rap and I was going to say “La mami internacional” by 7 Notas 7 Colores, but I’ll say Airbag’s “Mondo Cretino” instead because this is problably the album I listened the most during adolescence. Juan is also a fan! He also likes “SF Sound Furniture” by Japanese band Capsule. Each song on this album is about an appliance. Juan has played is a lot, which is understandable because it’s very cool.
You’re turning 22 this year. You started the band when you were still underaged. What has changed since?
Stephen: More stress, less beautiful skin, stronger hangovers… I also cry more when watching cute animal videos.
Olaya: I’m still studying whereas Stephen and Juan are working. Meeting up is more difficult because Stephen now lives in Barcelona, so we can’t do as many things as we’d like to.
You’re more grown up now though you look much younger than you really are. Were you treated unjustly or condescendingly when playing live?
Stephen: Well, people treat you nicely because they like seeing young people playing in bands and doing things in general. It’s ok for the most part. Sometimes we’ve had to deal with condescending people, but I don’t really have memories of that.
Olaya: Hell yeah! A few days ago in a punk bar I was asked if I was 15 years old. But when we played they loved us and treated us great. Every time I’m told anything about this I reply. People are always judging, especially us because we love to have fun and don’t really care about virtuosity. Some people don’t understand this, they just want half-hour-long guitar solos and perfect melodies. And then there’s people who don’t like pop at all and who see us as bunch of disrespectful youngsters having a great time and enjoying being onstage. Well, to be honest, sometimes we play very badly.
Things are harder now because the band is splited between Madrid and Barcelona. How’s the band developing?
Stephen: Well, we didn’t rehearse a lot in the past, so it’s ok. I can’t play in many of the shows because I live faraway and because of my job, and it’s sad.
Your shows are sometimes a mess, there’s people moshing and singing your songs. What’s the people who go to your shows like?
Stephen: Older than us hahaha. There’s a little bit of everything—motivated people and the ones who look badly to the motivated people.
Olaya: There’re people of all kinds and ages, fans and newcomers. There’re two kinds of public—people who are singing along and having a great time and then people with weird faces. I like being onstage because you can see this perfectly and the contrast is great.
What band or project do you think is the coolest right now, a gem to be discovered or something you think it’s going to make it?
Olaya: Stephen is an expert on that! Right now I can’t come up with anything.
Stephen: Heterophobia? I don’t know, I want oshare kei back.
Everybody knows you love Japan and Japanese fashion (Stephen was into oshare kei), but when will you make a video starring a gyaru?
Stephen: All our videos are starring by gyarus because that’s what we are deep in our hearts.
Olaya: I’m letting my nails grow for that moment. I hope there’s a revival, with so many contourning fans and all that now…
I know you like ruckus but also that you’re nice and sincere people. Here’s a space to throw some beef…
Stephen: To Jorge Cremades and to all the trash in Spain lol.
Olaya: Borja Prieto you’re a snitch! You owe us 10000000000 euros.
How do you see yourselves in a few years?
Stephen: AT THETOP!!!!
Olaya: Why would you want to know that haha lol xd