We get Róisín on the blower from Ibiza where she is about to rehearse something special for the Choice Music Awards. She tells us about her collaboration with graphic designer Bráulio Amado on the artwork for Róisín Machine and its accompanying 12″s.
“I’d went to see a Cosey Fani Tutti exhibition and became interested with the large format images of people tied up, this beautiful and subversive imagery. I was wondering where had this energy gone? At the same time, I was also researching ’70s wrestling and the connections between that and glam rock. You’d have people strutting from Crookes (Sheffield suburb) to the centre of town in ’60s blouses and make-up after seeing Roxy Music on Top of the Pops. People would emerge in spandex and stars out of coal mines and it wasn’t weird. I was curious about where this self-expression and individualism had gone and I guess I was reading this back into myself – to a time when I was a skin-head wearing black PVC jeans. I guess I was exploring this dissonance between where I came from and where I am.
“The album has club culture and house music in its DNA so when I started looking for a designer with my boyfriend, who has a background in graphic design, we started looking for someone with a history in creating these labels. However, it was really hard to find someone as most of these creations were anonymous. Then we came across Bráulio’s work for The Good Room club in Brooklyn and it jumped out at us. He had brilliant ideas and was able to keep the spirit of the ideas and time whilst using all the technology at his disposal to give it a sense of now. This evolved into a series of 12″s.
“When it came to shoot, I think the photographer (Adrian Samson) freaked out a bit. I’d ordered all this red rubber and black plastic and threw myself into it. It was like I was shooting an issue of Razzle in 1988. I wasn’t like Kylie. He was backing off more and more as the day went on and I had to wrangle the shots we ended up using. Everything is in the edit and what you get rid of.”
David Bowie – Aladdin Sane
In our house in London, we lived beside Brian, this miserable bastard, who had to put up with me climbing through his garden when I was locked out. And then he died. Turns out Brian also went by the name of Duffy and was the photographer who shot Aladdin Sane. He was one of the big names of his time and David Bailey’s favourite photographer.
Grace Jones – Island Life
I remember Stephen Burke had this on the mantelpiece over the fire in a house in Arklow. We weren’t sure if it was a man or a woman or a statue or made of wax.
Blondie – Parallel Lines
My brother was really into Blondie and had this amazing poster of her where she wore an Andy Warhol t-shirt. She was so beautiful and had the perfect face.
You can read more about Róisín and Bráulio’s work on Róisín Machine in this feature on It’s Nice That.
The winner of the Choice Music Awards 2020 will be announced on March 4.