Not quite a band and not quite DJs, DC/Berlin-based duo Benoit & Sergio have a very interesting partnership that is producing even more interesting music. The two became star-crossed bandmates when Sergio fell for Benoit’s vintage synthesizer collection. Sergio left his cozy teaching job in Washington D.C. to pursue music with Benoit in Berlin. Since then, the duo has created a number of EPs whose glistening rhythms and melancholic lyrics have captured the praise of critics and fans alike. They’ve taken their live act around the world, including some notable performances during this year’s Winter Music Conference. This Friday, May 24, Electric Pickle is presenting a performance of the band at Eve nightclub. We spoke with them ahead of their upcoming performance.
For those unfamiliar with you, how would you describe your sound?
This question is always difficult to answer. It’s sort of like someone asking you what your breath smells like–it’s right under your nose, and yet it is infinitely separate in a way. For us, our sound is bouncy, summery, up, high energy. But then sometimes it’s a bit more Indian summer, still warm but it’s early October and the high-schoolers are playing football on Friday nights down at the field and you might need to wear a sweater there because it’s getting a bit chilly after sunset.
What influences your music currently?
We are working on one track right now that almost has a funk/rock feel to it. Perhaps that could be from listening to a lot of Iggy Pop’s “Lust for Life” and Prince’s “Head.”
What are you listening to now?
Kurt Vile’s “Wakin On A Pretty Day” on repeat.
You guys have an interesting backstory about how the two of you came together. Can you tell our readers about it?
We met via a girl Sergio was interested in, but who wasn’t interested in him. She introduced us – maybe she had the sense that we would be a better match.
What has been your favorite moment so far together since you’ve started creating music and playing live?
We’ve had a lot of good times and a lot of not so good ones, but the Electric Pickle in Miami in late January of 2012 is probably up there at the top for sure. It was just a normal club night that turned into this magical mystery tour. New Year’s Eve in Mexico with Nico Jaar and Steve Bug in 2012 was magic, too.
You played during Miami Music Week this year. How that experience was for you?
We played three shows and each one was a pleasure, especially the Hot Creations show outside at night in perfect weather for a couple thousand people. The vibe was perfect – electric and full of love.
What do you enjoy most about Miami?
Miami could be our favorite place to play. The crowd is always super enthusiastic, open-minded, crazy. But it’s hard to articulate what makes a place unique – that’s what makes it unique in a way. Miami’s uniqueness comes from some wild combination of its architecture, pastels, beaches, cultural diversity, and LeBron James.
What are you working on at the moment?
We are working on numerous things – perhaps too numerous. Two EPs and a full length album which is feeling ever closer to being done.
What can we expect from your show on Friday?
We’re excited to play some new stuff. By this point, we have the sort of comfort with Miami and the guys who run the parties we play for that we can be more free. Some people say familiarity breeds contempt or produces complacency. But it could be that the opposite is true – when you’re familiar with something, only then can you get more weird and interesting.