RPM #7: Lisbona
Our latest installment in the Robotic Peacock Mix series comes from West Coast-based sisterly duo, Lisbona. From LA to San Fran and beyond, Ava and Laura Lisbona are leaving their mark on the California scene with their high-energy DJ sets, charming personalities, and their very own spandex-themed party, Stretch Sunday. Their musical style varies from dance floor to dance floor, where mainstays of house and disco to techno and sweet ass funk comprise a blend of sounds that are speckled with 80s pop/electro and 90s R&B, which make an appearance when you least expect it. In only a couple of years of DJing, they’ve played alongside some of the industry’s finest, including Soul Clap, Mr. C, Crazy P, Climbers, and Lee Foss. With a fierce energy on the decks that makes them the life of the party, Lisbona is a name that will not only be well-known in Cali for much longer!
We caught up with Laura and Ava to ask them what it’s like to DJ with their sibling, their favorite party spots in Cali, upcoming tour dates, and the concept behind RPM#7. Press play and enjoy! ♥
RP: If you had one word to describe your DJ style, what would it be?
What’s it like to tour/play with your sibling?
Laura: It’s a little like when a Pegasus and a unicorn make sweet love…a union of two magical creatures that can be a little messy, but overall qualifies as the most amazing thing ever. Ava and I were always close growing up, but we’ve become even more inseparable with age. Music-wise it’s fantastic as our DJ styles and music selections are really reflective of our personalities. Ava’s the younger, edgier sister and she likes her choons techy and nasty as HAIL. I gravitate toward the funkier, booty shaking stuff. The combination of the two is where I think the magic lies.
Ava: I really couldn’t have said it better myself. There is a lot of high-fiving, silliness, hip thrusting and goofing off; all things we have been practicing for a really long time together.
Favorite party spots in San Francisco and LA?
Ava: I am a big fan of Monarch in San Francisco. Laura and I do our party, Stretch, there. The sound system is killer & it’s gold (which is amazing), the upstairs is a chill bar in case you need to escape the rave and have a fancy cocktail before you go boogie some more. Harlot is a great one as well and they are a pleasure to work with. I just recently moved back down to LA, and I like Sound in Hollywood quite a bit. They bring great acts to the Framework parties and for Monday Night Social. Now that I live here again, I’m realizing I definitely missed the day parties that LA has with its beautiful weather and I am anticipating a Grand Park party downtown. I have heard they have the same feel as the Sunset parties I love in SF.
Laura: For San Francisco, it’s Monarch. All day. Especially for Stretch Sunday (duh). I’ll go anywhere Sunset Sound System goes; they do a series of park parties, boat parties, and a retardedly fun campout that I cry if I miss. And, of course, a proper underground floats my boat. For LA, Sound always brings in great talent. But LA to me is all about the outdoor parties with killer weather, then a fabulous poolside after party in the Hollywood Hills. I just went to Gypset (an event brand) in LA a few weeks ago, which I would say is definitely worth checking out if you can get in the loop on when they’re happening.
What inspires your DJ sets?
Ava: The crowd. If the people are engaged and dancing, then we are doing what we are supposed to do. I can never resist a nasty beat…no one can.
Laura: A genuine connection with the crowd and not being too cool to play anything. I’m so over music snobbery, I can’t even say. In the end, rhythm is rhythm, so I say give the crowd what they want while keeping it “you.” I’ve been pulling out a lot of my old booty breaks tunes—some Stanton Warriors and Freestylers and such—and dropping them in with the house crowd. People go bananas. The day you start closing your mind off to new sounds is the day you get old. Preach.
Favorite producer(s) at the moment?
Laura: Click Click! He’s really developed his own sound; it’s infectiously bassy and a lot of his tracks are worthy of being placed in the “secret weapons” category. Also, Kevin Knapp. I saw him hanging out at an after party recently and was so star struck, I couldn’t even introduce myself, which is hilarious because I’m always the first person to march right up to anyone and make friends. And finally, Richy Ahmed, Soul Clap and DJ Tennis for life!
Ava: You could pretty much copy Laura’s answer here… But, I’ll go ahead and give props to some more people: Nick Monaco, who is pretty much crushing everything he touches, Francesca Lombardo, Thodoris Triantafillou, Fur Coat, Dirt Crew, Nice7… I wish I could keep naming…
Describe the concept/mood of the mix…
Laura: This was really Ava’s hay day because we both agreed that it would be fun to bust out some of our darker, techier tracks as Robotic Peacock is Detroit-based. We wanted it to be intelligent and fun, but still have that dirty sound that reminds you of losing your shit at a grimy warehouse at 6AM. I wanted the “secret track” at the end- remember those? I used to love buying a cassette or CD and figuring out that there was a secret, unlisted track after I thought it was over. I chose the slow, funky Breakbot track for this purpose because I also felt it was like a sort of decompression from what is a bit of an intense journey… Especially after Gui Boratto’s “Beautiful Life,” which is, in my opinion, one of the most artfully-built and consuming electronic productions, as well as quite possibly my favorite track of all time.
Any upcoming tour dates we should know about?
Laura: We just wrapped up a string of fantastic gigs including a killer show with Bob Moses at Monarch (SF), and a freakishly high-energy Stretch party with DJ Tennis and Lovelife in San Diego. Our next gigs are the Eye Heart SF San Fran Cinco Block Party on May 3rd, which is a super fun day-time event at Public Works in SF, Stretch at Monarch, then a secret Monobrow underground in LA which is TBA…so stay tuned.
Ava: I’m just excited to hang out.