The Balconies; A Short Survey

By Annie Webber

Sitting down for a chat with Stephen and Jacquie of pop-rock darlings The Balconies in the blackened pits of The Legendary Horseshoe is like something along the lines of stopping by for a cuppa-tea-in-the-kitchen chat after school with the boppinest family on the block. Made up of brother and sister duo Jacquie and Stephen, and Jacquie’s love, Liam, if you haven’t seen their live show yet, you’re seriously depriving yourself, and for no good reason. Look forward to a mashup of sheer rock-n-roll prowess, Hairspray-esque twist and dip dance steps, and real-deal on-stage love. Brimming with charm and poise, J &S quite politely oblige to the onslaught of off-topic questions. Enough rambling. The survey.

She Does The City: How do you take your eggs?
Jacquie: If I’m in a rush, over-easy. Otherwise, poached.
Stephen: Easy-over. It’s not the same thing.
(laughter ensues)

Ideal rainy [Saturday] activities?
S: Coffee and reading a book.
J: Cleaning my room. I’m really productive on my days off. Then I’d have a hot chocolate, eat an entire bag of ketchup chips, and watch Star Trek.
S: And puddle jumping.
J: But it’s inside!
S: Inside puddle jumping?

Favourite childhood television series?
S: Dragon Ball Z
J: Blossom. You’re too young, Stephen. Also Degrassi. And Power Rangers. I always wanted to be the yellow one. Oh, and Reboot. We’d always run to the TV to push the button at commercial breaks. (Demonstration follows)

Best concert experience?
S: Leonard Cohen in Kingston this summer. No opener, he just played for three hours.
J: The Yeah Yeah Yeah’s. And I know it’s cliché for a chick to adore Karen O… I was front row, it was hot and sweaty, the middle of the summer, and they played every song I liked. Every. Song.

Soup or salad?
S: Soup.
J: In the summer, a salad. In the winter, a soup. Mmm.

Where is your favourite place to sing?
J: I’ll sometimes wake up and have a song in my head, but it’ll be non-sensical, a song that doesn’t exist. (Humming). Oh, and I had to stop listening to headphones in public because I’d get weird looks.
S: Well you deserve them! You’re messed up!
[brief, courteous argument]
S: The last five minutes of my bike ride home. With the wind brushing in my hair.

Favourite time of day?
S: Early afternoon – sun so strong, day still young.
J: 10:30 Friday or Saturday night – Everyone’s getting ready, getting pumped, but nobody’s sloppy yet.
S: No one likes sloppy people.

You have $1000 and ten seconds to decide how to spend it. Go.
J: Save it, brand new van, new clothes, really nice house, think about helping to fund the tour.
S: Clothes?!?
J: I have to fund my sequins.
(Stephen starts to list his wishes, but the ten seconds are up)
S: (Glare at Jacquie) You win this round.

What’s the best part about siblings in a band?
J: You can fight and people understand why you’re fighting. If Liam and I fought, people would think ‘Oh, maybe they shouldn’t be together.”
S: I guess the most literal thing is that our voices blend well together. Like Oasis. Or the Moffats. Or Hansen.
J: We compliment each others’ voices.
S: You’re pretty.
J: So are you.

Where do you go to stroll?
J: I like walking down the Ottawa canal. It’s beautiful, there’s the cityscape, skaters in the winter, boaters in the summer. With a cuppa joe.
S: Wait, can you have coffee?
J: Well, maybe I left with it.
S: Or stole it.
J: Or beat down a skater with a beavertail and took it.
S: In my hometown, Metcalfe, with my dog, strolling in the backyard.

What would the perfect reaction to a show be?
J: If audience members are as sweaty as we are. Or are trying to sing our songs, mouthing the words. Dancing.
S: Professing love. Declaring us as gods.
J: Someone asking me to marry them.
S: Buying us a meal.
J: Or a hotel room. Or if Mick Jagger came up and said “Really good set”.

(Laughter/hilarity ensues, as Horseshoe staffer walks by – “Everything’s a joke to you punkers”)

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