Carlotta Cosials is nothing short of a superwoman; sitting in her Madrid apartment, the lead singer of Spanish garage rockers Hinds is surrounded by a half empty bottle of rum and a bouquet of slowly decaying flowers from some admirer, looking impossibly energized and surprisingly excited for our Skype interview. You would think that between touring around the world playing sets so raucous they could incite a riot and answering all the digital fanmail their band receives on a daily basis, the former medical student-turned-singer would maybe be sporting some bags under her eyes while begrudgingly answering questions, but no. Cosials (like her bandmates Ana Perrote, Ade Martin and Amber Grimbergen), is easily one of the most affable front-women you could meet; combine her enthusiasm and “take no bullshit” attitude with her florid Spanish lilt and you can’t help but be won over.
With the recent release of their gritty full-length debut ‘Leave Me Alone’, Hinds are in the unique position where they’re not too big to play a random house party but popular enough to sell out venues around Europe and the states, including The Echoplex, where they played to a sold-out, stoked crowd last Friday. We sat down with Cosials to talk about everything from dealing with music industry sexism to (one day?) playing in North Korea.
LA CANVAS: Of all the shows you guys have played, has there been one that you were particularly happy about or one that was extra crazy and exciting, or any wild stories from any shows you guys have played?
Carlotta Cosials: The wildest stories cannot be told, because all our families, they read every interview. But we always tell this story in Kansas City: we played a house party. We had this Facebook message. We try to check all the Facebook messages we have, and this guy told us, “I saw you played in Kansas,” because we were supporting Glass Animals, and it was sold out; “I’m doing a party at my house, you wanna play?” And I was like, “Dude, of course, we love house parties.” We show up and it was like an American teen movie, with red cups and everything. There were like 50 people there, some making out with each other, and a joint coming to our mouths while we were playing.
LAC: At this rate you guys aren’t gonna be able to take house party requests anymore. You’re slowly getting there.
CC: I know, this tour the Facebook messages have been out of hand. We can’t handle it anymore.
LAC: Well social media for bands is like the best advertising you could do yourself nowadays.
CC: Yeah, exactly. So we communicate to people exactly the way we want to communicate, which I think is pretty important, that you don’t lose personality in that way.
LAC: Being a band of four women automatically makes you stick out a bit compared to everyone else, especially in the garage rock scene. I mean, there’s lots of bands with women in them, but have you guys encountered any problems or any sexist bullshit people throw at you, or have you guys been pretty isolated from that?
CC: You can’t imagine the amount. Like, so much everyday. Seriously, so, so much. I think it’s also because we are from Spain…some countries have problems with alcohol, some countries have problems with not having jobs, and Spain is very bad with sexism. We don’t [experience] sexist comments abroad, people are open-minded and they don’t judge our music in that way [but] sometimes they do, which is a shame…They’ll compare us to Warpaint or HAIM just because we are girls.
LAC: It’s true, you guys don’t sound anything alike, but because it’s easy for writers to say, “oh well they’re like this, because it’s girls in a band.”
CC: Yeah but it’s stupid–like comparing Black Lips with Glass Animals because they are four boys. The worst comments we’ve had have been in Spain because the image of four girls on a stage with guitars, sweating and shouting to a crowd of boys and girls, has been super shocking for [the Spanish] press but it’s changing right now because of the album. [In Spain,] if you don’t have an album, it’s like you’re not respected or something. So it’s not like in the rest of the world where you guys listen to music, and if you like a song, you don’t mind how many plays that song has.
LAC: What goals do you really want to accomplish as a band in the future?
CC: We have this crazy goal, and we’d love to play in North Korea.
CC: Impossible, but still, we’d love to. And we also cannot wait to be on TV. I think it’s pretty cool. And I have this particular ambition: I love movies and cinema, and one of my dreams is to put on a big show and record it very well with a lot of cameras, film it in 16 mm and do a super premiere in at least one cinema in the capital cities of the world. And we’d all watch a Hinds show with everyone sitting and eating popcorn…I think it’s pretty awesome.