Scraggly boy-girl punk duo get away with trading clothes and broken bottles.
"It's weird that I'm wearing pants today," says Isabel Almeida, 27, one half of the writhing Brooklyn punk duo Hunters. But don't get any ideas—it's just that the Brazil-born singer-guitarist with beauty-school-dropout pink hair normally wears shorts. "My style is the same if it's summer or winter," she says. "I was never super-feminine—I like to sit however I want—so I always wear jean shorts, and in the winter, I'll put on tights and socks and a T-shirt." Which makes packing for tour a breeze, since she and fellow singer-guitarist Derek Watson, 29, are the same size. "And we wear the same exact thing every day," he adds.
Unrestricted comfort is key for Hunters' live shows, which usually end with the pair rolling around onstage in a mess of wires and broken instruments, soundtracked by feedback. At a raucous New Year's Eve performance in a New York basement, a fan wanted in on the action, and Watson wound up with a champagne bottle smashed over his head. But the show caught the attention of ex-Smashing Pumpkins guitarist James Iha, who produced the duo's debut EP, Hands on Fire, out last fall, as well as their forthcoming, as-yet-untitled full-length. In the interim, they'll be touring with A Place to Bury Strangers.
Injuries aside, playing live is what it's all about, say both band members, who met while working at a Chinatown arcade. "It's like the first day of school," Almeida says. "You're super-tired, but when you get to the venue, you're like, 'I can't wait!'"