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After years of butting up against the indie press poking fun at their sexuality and sisterhood, the Quins have found acceptance in the modern pop world, where strong, nontraditional personalities are in no short supply.As artists like Years and Years, Willow Smith, Halsey, Troye Sivan, and Frank Ocean have proven, gender and sexual fluidity is no longer seen as a limitation.Though some devotees, first drawn to the twins because they were outsiders, kicked back at their mainstream makeover: “Who even are you guys any more?” asked one fan when they announced they were opening for Katy Perry.It's a perk of sharing a face that only one twin had to do it.“Boyfriend” is one of Sara's songs, and it sounds like a right-to-reply from the silent partners of “I Kissed a Girl” or Demi Lovato's “Cool for the Summer.” “I let you take advantage 'cause it felt so good / I blame myself for thinking we both understood,” Sara sings seductively, before bursting into an anxious, sing-songy ultimatum: “You call me up like you would your best friend / You turn me on, like you would your boyfriend / But I don't wanna be your secret anymore.”She didn’t intend it as a kiss-off.
“I can't think of a gay woman that's on the pop charts. Pop feels a bit like an arms race at the moment (see: Taylor Swift’s “Bad Blood” video) with power concentrated among a small few.
The sisters’ infighting and comic onstage bickering are part of the band’s lore, but the fact that they can now collaborate and manage each other’s anxieties finally makes them a proper united front at this pivotal moment.
They have always joked that if they had been born as one person, they would be terrifyingly powerful, but Sara had always resisted that kind of association.“Before we were even in a band I was filled with self-doubt about what I actually had to offer people besides looking like Tegan,” says Sara.
They missed the point: Pop finally allowed Tegan and Sara to be themselves without apology.
The stars are aligned to get them where they want to go professionally, which is only possible because the Quins are closer than they’ve ever been.