from Fastforward weekly:
Published February 24, 2011 by Krista Sylvester in CD Reviews
She was m-m-m-made for you. Or, at least that’s what she’ll have you believing after you give her latest album a spin. Yes, Miesha Louie’s latest album, aptly titled Gods of Love, is a slew of relationship-inspired (a.k.a. love and sex) songs, but it makes for some sensual ear candy. As Miesha’s sultry voice sings of meeting her boyfriend (who just so happens to be Jesse Powell of the Pine Tarts, well known for being shirtless, but that’s another story) on her favourite track, “Leather Jacket,” you almost feel as though you were there the night they met.
But that was then and this is now. And in the moment, Gods of Love delivers track after track of colliding blues and garage-ready scrappers. “Make Love” and “Love, Baby,” for instance, are as sexy as their song titles suggest, and then some. It’s Miesha’s band but she credits much of their new, soulful sound to the addition of the band’s newest member, Chris Nevile from Von Zippers. His ear-pleasing, angelic organ contributions — inspired directly by church visits — add plenty of new dimensions to Miesha’s familiar sound. Nevile’s organ, surprisingly, is now a permanent fixture in the band’s music, even if it wasn’t planned that way. But isn’t that how the best things in life go?
Fast Forward Weekly: You guys are a three-piece now as opposed to a two-piece — did the sound change between the last album and this album?
Miesha Louie: Well, the songs were all written without the organ, and the organ kind of came into play afterwards. I was loosely saying to Chris (Nevile) to come play a couple tracks on my record and he ended up playing on every single song. Then I realized I have to play live with an organ player now, because this sounds really good. This one sounds more soul — not that it’s a soul record — but it has more soul because of the organ. The last album was more bluesy. And yeah, so he ended up joining the band, which I wasn’t really expecting, but I’m really excited about. He’s a dream band member. He wants to do everything I want to do. He wants to tour and stuff, so that’s awesome.
FFWD: Will you keep the organ on the next album?
I think so, yeah. He’s a really great addition to the band. I always said if I was gonna add anything — because I was pretty stuck on my two-piece idea — that it would be the organ. It sounds great. I really like what he brought to it.
FFWD: Do you have a favourite song on the album?
I think my favourite is probably “Leather Jacket.” It’s about when I first met my boyfriend. It was a really long time ago and we didn’t find each other again for like, five years or something. We were spooning on the couch of the Canmore Hotel. And totally funny because when I met him again he’s like, “Miesha, it’s me from the Canmore Hotel.” I’m like, “What?” Crazy — it took me a few minutes to figure out who I was talking to. So that song is kind of like, happy, sentimental to me and it’s a really fun one to play.
FFWD: I know you love touring. Where have you gone?
Pretty much just Canada. We were going to go down to the U.S., but it kind of fell apart. So mostly just Canada. We’re doing a coast-to-coast tour and anywhere in-between. One of my main focuses is to be on the road as much as possible. Our records typically do pretty well across Canada on campus radio and stuff, so I like to follow up with that and build a relationship with them. It’s an adventure so it’s a lot of fun. Not all of the shows are great. But it’s fun.
FFWD: What’s the difference between playing at the Ship & Anchor, where you’re holding your CD release party, and somewhere you haven’t been before?
I find the Ship is a really cool venue — there’s such a wide variety of people. Half the time the Ship is full and half the people don’t even know a show is going on, so if you can get everybody from the other side of the bar coming over to watch you; it’s pretty awesome. And there’s still all of your pals and fans showing up, too. It’s a good mix for having its own crowd and bringing your own to it, too.
FFWD: Do you have a favourite tour stop outside Calgary?
I really enjoy Gus’ Pub in Halifax. It’s like kind of a dive bar and has all the regular kids coming to shows there so it’s really fun. The coastal cities, both Halifax and Victoria, are really my favourites.
FFWD: You only started the band a couple years ago?
Yes, it’ll be three in February.
FFWD: Were you always going to start a band?
I was in a few bands, and they were always a collaboration. So when one would break up, I’d have to start a new band project again. So when my third band broke up, I was just so tired of it. I was like, “You know what? I have songs, I write songs, and I have an acoustic project.” I was like, “I’m just gonna start my own project and see how that goes.” It worked pretty well. It’s been awesome. I can rotate through band members, too — not because of any bad blood or anything — because of availability.
FFWD: Do you guys collaborate on things too?
When I say I write all the songs, I write them and then I bring them to my drummer then we jam it out and things can change in that process.
FFWD: Is it hard to have a day job and the band?
It’s usually really hard, but with (my current job) I find they are really flexible with me and really supportive. They’ve been great when I have long tours and I always come back to a job. Usually, it’s not too easy. It’s hard to find that.
FFWD: Do you hope to not have a day job one day?
Yes, it would be nice if music became my job — because it’s not like it’s not. It’s very much my full-time job and the other is my part-time job.
FFWD: With your song content, I noticed they are more about love and your relationships. Was this intentional?
I mean yeah, I always try to write what I know about. I’m just telling my own story and my experiences and they are as honest as my perspective. I’ve always been kind of a goofy romantic so that’s always what I’m thinking about, good and bad stuff. It’s all kind of straight from the heart, I guess.
FFWD: So the listeners kind of go on that love roller-coaster with you?
I hope they are relatable. It’s nothing no one else hasn’t experienced, too.