Woozy She-Devils bring catchy retro tunes to T.O.

Duo per­form as part of the Camp Wave­length mu­sic fes­ti­val

Thornhill Post - - Arts - by Ron Johnson

She-Devils de­scribe them­selves as some­thing akin to mu­si­cal wan­der­ers, pick­ing up sounds and styles from the past and rein­ter­pret­ing them through sam­ples and the unique and en­tranc­ing voice of Au­drey Ann Boucher. It’s trans­portive, vis­ual mu­sic that swings and bursts with colour and mood.

Lis­ten­ers might feel whisked away to a party with Andy Warhol in the ’60s at one mo­ment and an un­der­ground elec­tronic mu­sic fes­ti­val the next.

The Mon­treal band is in town this month as part of Camp Wave­length, a sleep­over week­end mu­sic fes­ti­val that was sched­uled for the Toronto Is­lands be­fore torrential spring and early sum­mer rains wreaked havoc on the city’s tiny har­bour par­adise. The ma­jor­ity of sched­uled events will still take place in an as-yet-to-be­named Toronto park, in ad­di­tion to an overnight event at the Garrison.

“I’ve al­ways seen mu­sic from the per­spec­tive of an artist or mu­sic lover rather than a mu­si­cian,” she says. “When I sing over a loop, I don’t feel like I’m in con­trol of what I do or that I am cere­brally en­gaged with mak­ing mu­sic. It’s more like my sub­con­scious is com­pletely tak­ing over my mind, and it just comes out of my dreams.”

The duo (Boucher along with band­mate Kyle Jukka) started ex­plor­ing mu­sic as part of Mon­treal’s un­der­ground loft scene at the Torn Cur­tain, the same al­ter­na­tive venue where another Boucher, of the Claire va­ri­ety, cre-

ated Grimes — the elec­tronic mu­sic phe­nom who scored a mas­sive hit with her last al­bum, Art An­gels.

“It was an op­por­tune en­vi­ron­ment,” says Jukka, who grew up in North York be­fore mov­ing to Uxbridge and on to Mon­treal. “In our two years there, it was like we were kind of out­side the world. It was re­ally cool.”

Here, the two young artists, Jukka and Boucher, started draw­ing sam­ples of sounds from the past to pair with Boucher’s vo­cals.

“We were in­flu­enced by An­nette Fu­ni­cello, early Madonna, prob­a­bly right from the be­gin­ning,” says Boucher, whose art­work is also used by She-Devils, in­clud­ing the cover of the band’s self-ti­tled de­but al­bum. They are also in­spired by film of a cer­tain off-kil­ter es­thetic, and have taken to di­rect­ing their own vin­tagestyle mu­sic videos.

She-Devils re­leased their first EP back in 2016 and have quickly gar­nered sig­nif­i­cant ac­claim for their rhyth­mic and in­fec­tious sound, fa­mil­iar and ap­proach­able but unique enough to set them apart from the crowd.

The band played in this past win­ter’s Wave­length event, and are back this month for Camp Wave­length.

In ad­di­tion to She-Devils, the fes­ti­val also in­cludes acts such as the Luyas, Deer­hoof, Jessy Lanza and Rich Au­coin among many oth­ers. Fes­ti­val venues now in­clude the Garrison, a boat cruise, the Great Hall and a park. For the full run­down, go to www.wave­length­mu­sic.ca.

Au­drey Ann Boucher and Kyle Jukka are She-Devils

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