Five rounds with The Raveonettes -- EW chats with the band about Vikings, Christmas, and Kmart

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The Bartender at Austin’s Broken Spoke dance hall is named Debbie. And if she’s had a rough morning, you’re in for an even rougher night: ”The more my hangover sinks in,” she growls, shuttling some margaritas to the table, ”the stronger these things get.” Luckily, the honkies in the back of the honky-tonk are the Raveonettes (who just released their second full-length, Pretty in Black), two hard-drinking Danes — co-vocalists and guitarists Sharin Foo and Sune Rose Wagner — capable of putting away booze and barbecue and still holding court on sleazy sex, skinny legs, and the magic of Kmart. Can they go five rounds? ”Remember,” says Foo, ”we’re from the Viking legacy.”

ROUND 1

EIGHT SMELLY GUYS

Margaritas all around.

Wagner I’ve got the Encyclopaedia Britannica on my computer. . .well, not anymore.

Foo It was stolen. It had 20 to 30 songs that’d just been recorded. . .

Wagner All our tour photos were on there too.

LTT Didn’t you have backup?

Wagner [Sheepishly] Eh. . .no, because I never lost anything in my whole life. Somebody will put out a great record in a few months, and I’ll go, ”Wait a minute. . .”

LTT The Britannica was on it?

Wagner When we’d go to a city we’d look it up. Get the full story.

Foo But you have days when you don’t want to do anything but stay in bed and watch Twin Peaks in the bus with eight smelly guys.

Wagner The only problem is that we usually watch it when we go to sleep late at night. . .

Foo . . .and you get scary dreams.

ROUND 2

MEXICAN STANDOFF

Another round of margaritas, and some fajitas.

LTT [To Foo] So you’re on the bus with a bunch of guys?

Foo Seven [roadies and the backup band], plus the driver. I’ve never experienced any female drivers. I need some girlie company.

Wagner We had a female driver in England, remember? F—ing crazy. She crashed the bus 15 minutes after we left. We were in the back, and all of a sudden — boom.

Foo I’m not sure she was a girl.

Wagner Yeah, a unisex driver. [Eats food] This is f—ing good!

Foo Now we’re in Texas.

Wagner We just played in Mexico City. It was so hot, I had to wear shorts, and my legs look terrible. The Mexicans do not like my legs!

Foo Sune has the longest legs in Scandinavia.

Wagner They’re good for Scandinavia. Not for the tropics.

ROUND 3

A CONDOM ENDORSEMENT

Yep — ‘ritas from Debbie.

Foo We were just asked to do this tour in the States, sponsored by Trojan condoms. Why do you think we were asked to do that?. . . I don’t know if I’m supposed to be offended or not.

Wagner We write a lot about sex, but it’s the sleazy kind, not the condom kind. We did the Marlboro tour. And we’re doing the Jim Beam tour. Cigarettes, booze, and condoms. It all makes sense.

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