Tegan and Sara Make Short List for Polaris Music Prize

Canadian indie band Tegan and Sara are on the shortlist of nominees for the Polaris Music Prize, given each year to the Canadian album with the highest artistic merit.

The identical twin sisters earned their first nomination for the prestigious award with 2009’s Sainthood, their sixth studio album, but the first they wrote together.

“Our mom made us,” Tegan told Spinner.com of the decision to write together. “Writing together has always been something that Sara and I have sort of been almost horrified when people asked us why we didn’t do it. Even when we were kids and writing songs in our bedrooms, it was always a separate process. This record was our sixth, and we thought we’d try a bunch of different things.”

Tegan and Sara recently returned from a European tour that included a show at the 2010 Glastonbury Festival. The New Waver rockers chronicled their tour for PAPERMAG, making mention of an interesting discovery while visiting Tower Records in downtown Dublin.

“Tower closed its doors in America in 2006 (sad) but still lives on in a few franchise locations on this side of the world,” wrote Tegan in the online journal. “While we were there Sara found an amazing book about learning to play guitar. Bikini clad women teach the young “lads” how to play basic chords and work on their up and down strokes (seriously). As record stores go the way of the dinosaur Sara and I cling to the hope that playing in the ones that remain will encourage people to buy our record, or any record for that matter. In this case we also encouraged them to buy the guitar book with the bikini-clad instructors.”

Speaking of playing guitars, Tegan discussed what was used on Sainthood with EQ Magazine.

“Chris (Walla, bassist on Sainthood) has a crazy collection of Rickenbackers, and Sara is a huge Gretsch fan, so there was a smorgasbord of Rickenbackers and Gretsches,” said Tegan. “Sara has a couple of Malcolm Youngs, and Chris and I have Duo Jets.”

The new wave rockers will next join Paramore on the summer-long Honda Civic Tour, as well as a sole performance at Lilith Fair on July 30 in Boston.

Get tour information here.