RS: Speaking about one-dimensional, there's definitely almost two
different characters to your music – there's the bravado of "Jack You
Off" or "Konichiwa Bitches," and then there's the very sensitive "Be
Mine" or "With Every Heartbeat." Are you talking from two voices?
Robyn: I think all human beings are complicated. I don't think that we're just one thing. I think music is one of those places where you can actually talk about how complicated we are, and especially in pop music. You can deal with these everyday, very emotional situations without being pretentious. Pop music has a worthy way of dealing with the human condition. This is a personal album, and I'm bringing out different sides of myself. I can definitely agree with you that there are two sides of the album – there's the "Be Mine" and "With Every Heartbeat" and "Bum Like You" and "Anytime You Like," all very vulnerable songs and then "Cobrastyle," "Konichiwa Bitches," and even the intro of the album is a different kind of thing. But it's that contrast that I'm interested in, and that contrast is in the music as well if you look at how melodic the songs are, but still the production is very sparse. Or even the contrast between how I started out as an artist and where I ended up. The thing that happens when you put hard against soft is something that I think fits pop music really well.
RS: How involved are you in the making of the videos?
Robyn: I'm very involved in the videos. I choose directors carefully. I think that the key to making a good video is that you have to work with the people, and be very involved in that process. I usually have an idea of what I want to do and sometimes I communicate that to the directors. Sometimes we go into a process where we discuss the idea a lot before it's done. Sometimes I'm involved with writing the script, but sometimes I also work with directors, who are very independent and want to do their own thing. I'm not a video director and I think it's important that I let whoever it is, this woman or man directing the video, do their thing. It's different every time.
RS: . There are two versions of several of the videos. "Be
Mine," for example: there's the version of you as a performer with a
shaved head, and then there's the version with you walking around with
the guy on the baseball field. Why was the second version done?
Robyn: Well, the first video was made for the Swedish release about three years ago. I think the first video is good and I'm very happy about that video, but I look different and didn't have the haircut I have now. It's a video that was made in Sweden for this market, where people know me very well, and they know what I look like even though I change outfits like every fifth second in that video. People recognize me because here, I'm a known artist. Outside of Sweden a lot of people don't know what I look like and I had this idea of going back to the teenage perspective of what it's like to be dumped for the first time. That's kind of where the inspiration for the lyrics came from on this song. So I just wanted to take the opportunity and see if we could make a video that would fit the international, or at least the European market, better. And also I enjoyed making the new video for it and I wanted to try something else, as well.
RS: With "Handle Me," there's two versions, also – there's the
one, a Kyle Minogue kind of video, with the boxes, and there's the one
where there's a street gang. Was that the same kind of thing?
Robyn: Exactly, that was the same thing. It's an older video and it was done at a point where all the videos that I made for the album were made here in Sweden. They were made here when the album was first released, and were very low budget videos. Which I think is great – I don't mind working with low budget kind of videos. All of those videos are old now, for me they're three years old. So there's probably going to be even more videos done for this album when it reaches the U.S., probably a third video for "Be Mine." <laughing>