Annie came to FADER right after she came from Out. It's a fitting pair, as we realized that she has all of the makings of a gay icon: Kylie blonde, Mariah pop, Madonna pipes. But after the release of her debut Anniemal, in 2004, she's been embraced by a more mainstream indie audience. She recently released her followup Don't Stop on independent Norwegian label Smalltown Supersound, a very different home than the major labels who courted her and who she was once contractually bound. Freer, Don't Stop is a more powerfully pop record than the potentially compromised pandering she might have delivered. Not just a gay icon, Annie is Big In Japan, which she discussed with us, along with her sensible calm and DJ skills, and how both help make a smart record.