Deap Vally: “Wearing less clothing onstage is great – believe me, we sweat a lot…”
Deap Vally rocked Reading at the weekend, which seems like excuse enough to run our interview from Classic Rock 187 and run their five (oh, OK, six) greatest videos.
Words: Johnny Sharp
“Music and knitting actually have a lot in common,” admits Lindsey Troy, the riff-squeezing, blues-howling front half of Californian duo Deap Vally. “They’re both very tactile activities and involve a lot of dexterity, and have a lot of hypnotic, gratifying rewards.”
She’s talking about how she first met drumming powerhouse Julie Edwards in the unlikely setting of a Los Angeles crochet class. “Julie was teaching me,” says Troy. “She saw I was good with my hands and fingers, so she thought I’d be a promising bandmate.” Deap Vally were duly formed in 2011. “We thought we would have to make up some bullshit about how we met,” says Troy, “because the truth sounded too nerdy. The irony is that people now think we made up the true story.”
Regardless of needlework’s rock’n’roll credentials, the pair soon patented a fearsome blues rock racket. And on tunes like current single Baby I Call Hell, it causes you to wonder just how a guitar, drums and two voices can make a sound so full of heavy metal thunder. Meanwhile, they’ve created a visual package that’s just as arresting as the music, but it’s a look that derives as much from practicality as style.
“We get very hot on stage, so wearing less clothing is great – because, believe me, we sweat a lot. Aside from that, we just love over-the-top rock’n’roll glamour. We love Bowie, Hendrix, Jimmy Page, Madonna, Tina Turner… and what they became on stage. It’s our way of creating a heightened experience for everyone. The stage is sacred to us, so we’re kind of putting on our religious regalia to get up there.”
She may be half-joking, but there’s a touch of gospel fervour within Troy’s Joplin-esque vocals on their debut album Sistrionix, even if she’s expressing defiantly secular sentiments on ballsy tunes like Gonna Make My Own Money and Walk of Shame. And already Deap Vally are attracting a passionate following. As for their sound, Troy says : “I realised early on I needed two guitar amps, because one just isn’t loud enough. But the rest is just us… rocking out.”
Deap Vally’s new single, Bad For My Body, taken from the band’s Top 40 debut album, Sistrionix, is released next Monday, September 2nd.
FIVE GREAT DEAP VALLY VIDEOS
Big riffs, long legs, hot pants. No, it’s not the Darkness’s latest tunes, it’s Deap Vally.
End Of The World – official video
and here’s End Of The World captured by the BBC Live at Reading Festival
Gonna Make My Own Money – official video
Baby I Call Hell – official video
Lies – official video
Bad For My Body – The new single