Catching Up With She-Devils
Montreal duo Kyle Jukka and Audrey Ann Boucher have been making music together as She-Devils for more than four years since they met in a music rehearsal space. Since their fateful meeting, the pair released their debut self-titled album in May, which was influenced by a wide array of films, TV shows, and musicians. Leading up to and following the album release, She-Devils have been all over the place, touring internationally and taking on new projects like directing their own videos and designing their own merch. While they were in town last week to play Do Division Fest and perform at The Empty Bottle with up-and-coming Chicago band Deeper, Jukka and Boucher took some time to catch up with ANCHR. From tour stories to the new direction of their sound, here's what we learned during our chat with She-Devils.
They Used To Live In The Rehearsal Space Where They Met
The rehearsal space in which Jukka and Boucher met also served as their residence during that time in their life. The band credit the creative living quarters with fueling their workflow back then. Talking more on the subject, Jukka says, "I think I learned a lot about my own practice at the time. It was just so easy to be devoted and there was no other responsibilities in life for me at that time. So I was just working on music." Boucher echoes the same sentiment about remaining devoted to her craft in the rehearsal space. "Having access to this room all the time, I was like 'Oh, I feel intense now... I’m gonna go see what’s on my sampler and hear myself sing.' Now that I’m living in an apartment, it’s different. I have to make songs on headphones and think maybe my neighbors are hearing me."
As far as their process for the first album, Jukka describes their writing process as being very minimal. "I guess it’s pretty simple. We just started with really simple basic loops. Audrey mostly makes the vocal parts and the lyrics in her own space. I hand over an assortment of ideas to start working on. The things that kind of click... we flush them out from there."
Playing Moth Club Tops The List of Tour Highlights
In addition to the endless amount of live shows that She-Devils have played across North America, including a successful SXSW, the band recently traveled across the pond to play their first European tour. Jukka and Boucher both say they had a blast in every city, but some shows definitely stood out to them. "Probably playing The Moth Club in London," Jukka says, recalling his some of his favorite moments. "It was such a great venue, tons of people came out. It was a free show, so there was that incentive, but it was just cool that people were curious enough to come see us."
Boucher, who had never set foot in Europe before this tour, remembers Brighton as a highlight. "We had a fun time in Brighton too, at The Great Escape. We went to this place called Sticky Mike’s. It was everything I’ve ever dreamed of for going to a bar in England, and partying to all my favorite songs," she says.
As far as any culture shocks of playing gigs in Europe, Jukka adds, "The whole thing is a culture shock, because on the surface it seems familiar, but it’s so much older and really dense."
They're Tired Of Being Tagged To David Lynch
Boucher and Jukka credit many genres, both musical and film as inspiring their work. From Quentin Tarantino to Disney movies and Madonna to T. Rex, the influences of She-Devils are vast and diverse. Despite the wide range and presence of multiple influences, many people have continuously associated them to David Lynch, which the duo says is played out. Addressing the subject, Boucher says, "At this point it’s kind of hard to talk about David Lynch because of how it’s been so tagged on us. There are a lot of influences that went into the work that are more present than David Lynch and everyone kind of just went like 'Lynch!'" In fact, the pair admit that they haven't even watched any of the Twin Peaks reboot. Jukka says he's reluctant, even though he's a fan of the original series.
Honing in on some of their other references, Boucher reveals that "Make You Pay" was inspired by Quentin Tarantino and Lana Del Rey, adding that she wrote it during a time when she was listening to a lot of Lana.
They're Involved In Every Aspect Of Their Art
Boucher and Jukka worked together to direct the music video for their single "The World Laughs," a project they both set out to do based on their heavy cinematic influences. Elaborating on the project, Boucher says, "That’s how we started. The first thing we released was like a cut video, that we’d done ourselves. We had zero budget...we probably put 50 bucks into it. It went super well and it was really fun to do. It was well received, so we were like, we want to keep doing that. We’re into arts and stuff, but I feel like at this point we’ve done it, and it’s so much work. It seems like because we’re doing so much else...making the music, touring... I do visual art, so I do the album artwork and the merch. I feel like with bigger projects it’s hard to have enough time to really realize the vision as much as you want to. I think that’s one occasion where it’s really good to collaborate." She continues on to say that they're both interested in coming up with the concepts, but in the future they'd prefer to work with someone to push it further.
Jukka weighs in, adding, "I think ultimately we wanted to do something that still felt really personal, instead of a pro director coming in that didn’t have anything to do with us." He agrees their goal is to keep that going, while also working with more and more people who know what they're doing.
They're Amping Up Their Sound In The New Material
Although the band just released their album, Boucher says they've already been playing a few unreleased tracks during their live shows. Circling back to the tracks on the debut album, Boucher says she still loves playing "Make You Pay" because "it’s very like theatrical and cathartic," while Jukka likes to perform "Hey Boy" because "the rhythm is kind of cartoon-y." For their favorite of the unreleased material, Boucher says, "We have a song that’s called 'Hot Rod.' It’s kind of about a fast car. It’s just more intense. Not aggressive, but more amped up. That’s the direction we’re going for--" Jukka interjects to say that their new direction includes songs that are "a little less jingly" and dangerous. "I’m stoked about getting back into recording more music. We don’t really write on the road, but we collect ideas and we're scheming," he adds.
While talking about what else is in store for the band in the near future, Boucher says, "We’re going on this tour with Beach Fossils in July. They’re a really cool band and it’s on the west coast. So it’s going to be a really fun Summer adventure."
Keep up with all of She-Devils upcoming shows, including their tour with Beach Fossils, here, and listen to their debut album below to get ready for the new tunes in the works.