The LA electropop duo Jupiter Rising may not be re-inventing the wheel with their club-friendly pop, but as Evan Sawdey noted back in 2007 "who needs to be revolutionary when you’re having so much fun?" The duo's (Spencer Nezey and Jessica Payo) new record, The Quiet Hype came out March 17th and the recently sat down for PopMatters' 20 Questions.
1. The latest book or movie that made you cry?
Spencer: That's a tough one. I haven't read or seen anything that has made cry in a very long time. We need more sentimental material out there.
Jessie: The Apartment with Jack Lemmon and Shirley MacLaine during Christmas break after a break up. It’s a classic, but so sweet and heartfelt.
2. The fictional character most like you?
Spencer: Hands down I am like a young Black Tony Starks from Iron Man.
Jessie: Lydia from Beetlejuice. She’s a bit of a loner. She’s dark with a curiosity for the “other side” and ghosts. Plus all of her clothes are super rad,,,
3. The greatest album, ever?
Spencer: The greatest album off all time for me is A tribe Called Quest's Midnight Marauders. Changed my life at the age of 12.
Jessie: Tie with White Album by the Beatles and OK Computer by Radiohead. They both embody undeniably amazing songwriting, musicianship and the ability to go outside the box musically. They both have classic tunes that most people know of but they also have those wacked out obscure tracks for the super fans like me. Turn off the lights, sit down with these records and the experience is always amazing. They have been standby’s in my collection that I never tire of.
4. Star Trek or Star Wars?
Spencer: I grew up watching nothing but Star Wars movies. I used to take my mom's iron hair straightener and pretend it was a light saber. Star Wars all the way.
Jessie: Star Wars. No big reason why, really. I just watched The Empire Strikes Back probably 20 times one summer break. I prefer the older versions. You know, pre-Jar Jar Binks. I hated that thing...
5. Your ideal brain food?
Spencer: My ideal brain food is fish. Because its a proven fact that it is healthy protein for your mind. look it it up its true.
Jessie: Sushi...the whole package...sushi, sake, green tea...I always feel fresh and ready after a good sushi session.
6. You're proud of this accomplishment, but why?
Spencer: I am proud to be a signed artist for over five years and still rollin'. This something that is not easy to do these days. Tanner holla at your boy.
Jessie: Running the LA marathon. I don’t have a lot of discipline so training and running 26.2 miles taught me to push past pain and fatigue. I actually stuck with something that was truly difficult. That’s a big deal to me.
7. You want to be remembered for...?
Spencer: I want to be remembered as a real musician who went out and changed peoples lives. And a great entertainer.
Jessie: Being versatile. I wanna pull off doing every style of music throughout my whole musical career. I want to be known for that...it’s also my excuse for my incapability to settle for one genre, one label...
8. Of those who've come before, the most inspirational are?
Spencer: Those who have come before me. The most inspirational is Pharrell Williams. N.E.R.D. changed my life and made it OK to be a weird black kid.
Jessie: Shakespeare and Jesus. I’m gonna leave it at that...
9. The creative masterpiece you wish bore your signature?
Spencer: Hands down I wish I wrote and produced Thriller. It's the ultimate dance pop record.
Jessie: The Rocky Horror Picture Show. The music is rad. It’s awfully distasteful yet incredibly fun. It’s silly. The whole piece of work isn’t taken too seriously. Plus I just want to wear the costumes.
10. Your hidden talents...?
Jessie: My ability to imitate people. Not major celebrities or anything...just people in my everyday life. I pick up on people’s accents and idiosyncrasies.
11. The best piece of advice you actually followed?
Spencer: Best piece of advice was to always stay me. Which I agreed with because its gotten me pretty far so far. Thanks Dad.
Jessie: In piecing together the right outfit, pair anything with a neutral....thanks Stacey and Clinton from What Not to Wear. I kind of love them.
12. The best thing you ever bought, stole, or borrowed?
Spencer: Best thing I ever bought was my first car 2003 Audi A4 3.0 Quarto. Makes me feel like in James Bond.
Jessie: Best thing I ever bought: guitar lessons
Best thing I ever stole: ideas
Best thing I ever borrowed: my best friend’s BCBG dress for an interview.
13. You feel best in Armani or Levis or...?
Spencer: I actually own a lot of clothes in both brands. So I am super comfy in both. Levi's/Armani, holla at your boy.
Jessie: Lucky Jeans and American apparel jersey t-shirt with white converse. I feel sexiest when I’m not done up. I think I look better that way, too :-)
14. Your dinner guest at the Ritz would be?
Spencer: My dinner guest would be all my friends from La La land. We would get the Ritz Poppin.
Jessie: Christopher Walken no doubt. He’s a classy fellow but I know it wouldn’t be boring to say the least.
15. Time travel: where, when and why?
Spencer: I'm not really down for time travel. Too much crazy stuff happens, i.e. Back to the Future 2. I wouldn't want to wake up and Biff as a stepdad.
Jessie: 1969 Monterey Pop Festival to meet Jimi Hendrix, Otis Redding, and Janis Joplin...umm of course!
16. Stress management: hit man, spa vacation or Prozac?
Spencer: By far a spa vacation any time. Especially if its at the Bacara in Santa Barbara CA. A little piece of heaven there.
Jessie: Hit Man. Guns and karate chops. I kick pretty high, too. That helps my stress these days. Prozac wears off and spas are expensive.
17. Essential to life: coffee, vodka, cigarettes, chocolate, or...?
Spencer: All we need in life is a nice bottle of vodka and great conversation. That's what I have to say about that ;-)
Jessie: Red Velvet cupcakes...I made a batch the other day and almost ate alllll of them...
18. Environ of choice: city or country, and where on the map?
Spencer: I will always pick the city. And my final answer for 20 million rupees is Los Angeles forever. Love my hometown.
Jessie: Hard to say, just gimme a simple boat to sail in Hawaii and I’m straight.
19. What do you want to say to the leader of your country?
Spencer: Yo man good ass job. Don’t sweat the haters.
Jessie: Can I help?
20. Last but certainly not least, what are you working on, now?
Spencer: Currently I'm working in the studio with my production partner Greg Ogan as well as building our show for going back on the road.
Jessie: I’m working on getting the world to hear my music so that I can travel to sing my music and to make people dance and smile.