La Luz is Spanish for “the light”. It’s no surprise that Seattle based girl group La Luz have become a sort of light too, brightening up the surf rock genre with a unique and authentic vintage sound that many try to replicate but rarely achieve through their debut album “It’s Alive”.
The Fresh Zine got to talk to most of La Luz: Shana, Marian and Alice to talk about touring, It’s Alive and scary stories just in time for Halloween!
Fresh: First off, how were the dates you played with the Growlers for the Burgerama tour?
Marian: So awesome! We met a ton of nice new people and got to hang out with our buddy Lee, from Burger Records.
Shana: Yeah, it was great, all the bands were so good! We listen to the Growlers all the time so we were all stoked that we got to see them live finally. And any day we get to see Lee is a good day, that guy’s the best. We just had our record release show last week and it was amazing. We threw a dance competition and presented the winner with a trophy and Ruben from Hardly Art DJed and Dude York played and like a dozen people climbed the tall stage to jump off and crowd surf! Pretty magical. Alice was the hero of the night when she dove into the crowd and surfed her way back just in time for her keyboard solo in “Call My In the Day”.
Fresh: We also heard that you’re touring with Of Montreal, what are you most excited for?
Marian: We’ve never met them so I’m not sure what to expect, but I’m looking forward to potential inter-band bonding and also finally getting to visit New Orleans.
Alice: Super excited to tour with them. I think they will be so much fun.
Shana: I think they will be a fun band to get to see every night! We’ve never toured with another group before so it’s a totally new experience for us. I hope we can get their fans to dance. We’ll have to feel out the room and see if feels right to try and start a soul train.
Fresh: Since you’ve released It’s Alive recently, what were some of your influences for putting together this record?
Marian: In terms of drum parts, I just pull from the general surf vibe and try to capture those sweet 60’s drum parts.
Alice: I’d say mostly the influence has been my bandmates. Obviously I have my own person influences in style, but the drive and collaboration of the four of us has been what brings this record together.
Shana: In writing the songs I was mostly influenced by early rock and roll, soul, and surf, 60s garage from all over the world, and West coast bands like Ty Segall, the Shivas, and Shannon and the Clams. I spent a lot of time learning Link Wray songs. And I agree with Alice, the four of us work really well together, and we all love each other so that helps when you’re trapped in a van together for a month at a time.
Fresh: Do you have any favorite songs [off “It’s Alive”]?
Marian: I love It’s Alive, Sunstroke, and What Good Am I?
Alice: Big Big Blood
Shana: Sure as Spring, Sunstroke, What Good Am I?, Big Big Blood.
Fresh: The tracks off It’s Alive (and most of your songs) have a very distinct style, to me they kinda sound like they belong in a 60’s science fiction horror movie. If you could pick any movie to make a soundtrack for, which one would it be and why?
Marian: Probably some Wes Anderson film, I dig his vibe.
Alice: Quentin Tarantino. Anything, really.
Shana: Yeah, Tarantino, maybe Death Proof. Or something with Anna Karina, like Pierrot Le Fou.
Fresh: Since Halloween is coming up pretty soon, any scary stories to share?
Marian: There was the time I got mouth assaulted by an unwanted Charleston Chew…
Alice: yea yea yea. Marian loves that story. But I think she was being a baby 🙂
I love Halloween, so I don’t really have a bad story.
Shana: I have a scary story that relates to the album actually. I’ll try and set the scene. I was walking down the street one night lookin for a bus stop that was real hard to find, and I was walking along side Ravenna Park which is like this giant expanse of wilderness that slopes down into a valley (side note: in the comic Black Hole this is the park where all the infected kids hung out) so on one side there were street lights, but on the park side it was completely black. And I was feeling kinda creeped out for some reason, I don’t know why because I pass this park all the time and don’t feel that way. But that night it just felt kinda off and then I started hearing this cat, quietly at first: meeoow….meeeooow. And as I was walking I heard the cat get louder, I was getting closer, but I looked around and I didn’t see any cats. So I’m walking and now the cat is really close, it sounds like it’s right under me but I still don’t see it. And then I realize that it’s a HUMAN voice I’ve been hearing making the cat sounds!!! I ran away down the street and eventually wrote the experience into the song “It’s Alive”. The end.
It’s Alive is out now through Hardly Art Records and you can stream it for free here.