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Robyn interview

We caught up with the Swedish singer who's been touring with Coldplay

Swedish singer Robyn has been the main support for Coldplay across the UK and America over the last few weeks. We gave her a shout to find out how she’s been getting on.

Hello Robyn. You’ve been touring with Coldplay since the end of May. Has it been fun?

Have the US arena shows felt different to the English stadium dates?
The atmosphere in the stadiums was incredible and I bet is was special for Coldplay to play to their home audience, but I think the arenas were great too because it’s inside so the lights are more intense and you feel the crowd more in a smaller space. I like that.

For Coldplay fans who haven’t yet heard your music, please could you give us a little idea of what it’s like?
I’m fascinated by beautiful melodies and I think it would be safe to say that I make pop music in that sense. I would describe it as electronic pop music with its feet on the dance floor.

As an established artist with a big fanbase of your own, how do you approach support shows compared to headline shows?
I just go on my gut feeling. If it feels like an audience that I could communicate with in some way then I do it. But I don´t mind the challenge playing to a crowd that doesn’t know me, I get off on that.

Have the Coldplay fans been good listeners?
Yes, they have. Especially in the States, maybe because I’ve toured more there on my own as well. I think Coldplay’s audience in the States seems very curious of new music. And it’s nice to open up for a band that is so supportive of their opening acts, because then the audience knows that I’m there because Coldplay wanted me to be.

Is America somewhere that you’ve played a lot? Do you think the audiences there are different to the European ones?
The British crowd gets the kind of music I do, we had an amazing reception in Manchester especially. But American audiences are great to play to, they are very vocal!

Do you enjoy travelling around America? It always seems like quite a big and fascinating place.
I think we as Europeans feel like we should be quite similar to Americans since we are all part of the western world, but it’s like you said, a huge country and very different from Europe. There are many originals here, can you say that? Originals? I mean you can find anything here if you go looking for it. Americans invented youth culture.

How have you spent your days off?
In bed. Haha. Coldplay were nice enough to let me do some club shows some nights after the Coldplay shows so I’ve used my days off to rest up.

You’re from Stockholm, where the band play in August. What’s the one thing they – or the fans – should do in the city before the show?
Challenge my band for a ping pong game at the royal tennis court which is next to the Olympic stadium!

If you had to pick a show as a highlight of these dates with Coldplay, does one spring to mind?
Manchester. Selfish, but because they just reacted so well to my music. Also, Coldplay put on a great show too and the crowd went off! I watched the show with Jay-Z and Beyoncé who were kind enough to invite me to watch it with them.

Were you a fan of Coldplay before the tour?
I love Every Teardrop Is A Waterfall and made a cover of it for the BBC Live Lounge last year. My sister Effie is a major Coldplay fan and turned me on to their music a couple of years ago. We saw their last show in Stockholm together.

Have you watched the show much? What do you think?
I saw the whole shebang in Manchester and then I’ve watched parts of it on maybe 5 other occasions. My favorite part is of course the wristbands, but also seeing people letting go to the music. There is a combination of happy and sad in Coldplay’s songs that I think speaks to a lot of people.

Have you been able to hang out with the band?
We’ve seen each other in the hallways and had a chat here and there. They are very nice lads. It’s been a great tour to be on and me and the band have felt very welcome by everyone on the tour.
What’s coming up next for you? Is there a new album in the pipeline?
Yes, new album. When I don’t know. First vacation! And some more shows later this year in Australia and Europe.

Finally, the question we ask all interviewees, what’s your favourite Coldplay song?
Viva La Vida and Every Teardrop Is A Waterfall. They both have a melancholy that I like. And the melodies are beautiful.

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