Sinplus—the Swiss rock band made up of brothers Ivan and Gabriel Broggini—will represent Switzerland at Eurovision 2012 with their song “Unbreakable.” Wiwi caught up with Ivan, the guitarist, three days after Sinplus’s victory. Here are some highlights of our interview:
Wiwi: Congratulations on winning Die Grosse Entscheidungs Show! How did you celebrate?
Ivan: We just partied all night with our friends and our team. A lot of our friends came to the Swiss final, so we had a big, big party afterwards. We want to organize an event to party with otherpeople who stayed home and supported us by voting.
Gabriel, 29, is five years older than you. Does that make him the boss?
No we are both the boss. We write all the stuff together, and we work on the music together. It’s a team effort. I play guitar, and my brother is the voice.
How long have you guys been making music together?
We have been playing since we were young. My parents love music. My father played the guitar too and he taught us how toplay. We had our first band together at the age of 15 with another name. It was called Infinity, and was a band with two of our friends. After they went touniversity they didn’t have time to play any more, so we decided to start a new band—something that was me and my brother—three years ago.
And that’s when you formed Sinplus. What does the name mean?
It’s a kind of provocation. It’s a question of, “What is a sin today?” First of all we like how it sounds. Then we like the graphic. We also like how you can see the meaning how you want. What is a sin? Sin and plus? It’s something ironic.
Why did you decide to enter Eurovision this year?
When we wrote “Unbreakable” in July. We thought this could be the right one for Eurovision. We went to record it and we believed it right away. The message is really positive and the sound isn’t too rock. Out sound will always be different from the classic Eurovision Song Contest song. But “Unbreakable” isn’t as rock as we are normally doing.
What is your song “Unbreakable” about?
The message is, “Don’t let life events get you down.” You have to try to fight them and come out stronger. For me and my brother there’s also a personal meaning with the song. We played so much and made so much music, but the chances to share our music weren’t really there because we are in a small, small country where music is not so followed. Wefeel a little unbreakable.
Is that lack of opportunity one reason you entered the Swiss national selection?
In Switzerland Eurovision is one of the few chances you have to show your music. That’s why we decided to do this contest. We entered last year but we missed the submission date.
Did you submit “Unbreakable” last year?
No, it was with another song. Now I’m happy about it because I believe in “Unbreakable” and people now know Sinplus because of “Unbreakable.” I’m really happy. Maybe it was better than the other song anyway.
On many of the blogs and online sites Eurovision fans are calling you sexy. Are you guys comfortable being sex symbols?
I don’t know if this is true. I can’t answer. [Laughs].
Do you think the public are more aware of you since Die Grosse Entscheidungs Show?
It’s a big, big change. Really. The views on YouTube, the friends on Facebook, the people on the street—everything has changed. It’s totally different one day to another. Before it was always so difficult to get in touch with the radio stations. Now they really welcome us and they want to talk with us. We’ve done twenty interviews in three days. It’s amazing.
You already have a promotional video of “Unbreakable.” Will you film a new one ahead of Eurovision?
Of course. We are now in the planning stages. It’s one of the first steps we want to do.
Did you expect to win the Swiss national selection?
Of course it was a big surprise. But inside I knew that “Unbreakable” had big potential. For us it was already great when we finished the performance and we did a good job. Also the bloggers and Internet people enjoyed “Unbreakable” and this for us was already a big thing. But we went there to win and then it happened! We were surprised. There were a lot of good musicians and artists and we got it. It’s so great.
Some people have compared your sound to the Killers. What do you make of this?
Of course we like the Killers, but I can’t really see so many similarities. When one is writing a song, what you like is in your background, and if I say it is good it’s because of my background. We’ve heard the Killers, of course. But we’ve also heard a lot of rock music including U2, Queen, Block Party, Franz Ferdinand, Muse and Coldplay.
Who is your favorite Swiss Eurovision contestant of all time?
Maybe ABBA with Waterloo. But I really don’t have one that I can say for sure this is my favorite.
Have you started thinking about how you will stage your song in Baku?
We have not had time to think that much. After the video, one of the first things we want to do is set up the show.
Any big plans outside of Eurovision?
Well we just released an album three days ago [on December 9] and Unbreakable is the first single. The album is Disinformation and it’s a 12-song album.
What record label are you with?
We are independent. No management, no nothing. But now we have so many offers. In the next few weeks we are going to arrange something because we need help to manage our situation.
Have you spoken with Anna Rossinelli about her experiences at Eurovision 2011?
No, sadly. We just said a really fast hello. We didn’t have that much time, but I think next week we are going to see her and talk with her for sure.
Do you have a message for your fans or for Eurovision fans?
We want to rock Baku. That’s our message.