Tevas, Tinnitus and Timing with No Joy | Listen Up!
Images by Kyle Johnson
Listening to Montreal rock band No Joy gives us visions of a professional snowboarder on a sunny day, flying off a jump, doing something complex and elegant midair.
Not something we necessarily understand. But we’re into it.
We do know that No Joy leaders Laura Lloyd and Jasamine White-Gluz derive their looped and soaring music from guitars and effects pedals. The rest of new album More Faithful is a mystery to us. We’re cool with that–and highly recommend it as a soundtrack to summer road-tripping, camping, head-banging and zoning out.
We spoke to guitarist Laura Lloyd after a recent concert in Seattle about Tevas, tinnitus, complicated time signatures and chia seeds.
Nordstrom blogs: Your music is sometimes soft but in general, quite loud. Do you have tinnitus? Are you diligent or reckless about the health of your ears?
Laura Lloyd: I actually do have tinnitus, thank you for asking. Last tour my ears started bleeding! So yeah, I am totally [explicit].
Any impressions of your opening act in Seattle, So Pitted?
Um, best band ever? They were so rad. I hope to see them again. They’re gonna be loved.
Center: Nathan Rodriguez from So Pitted
What did you feel you got right with More Faithful? What were your goals going into making the album?
Definitely nailed how to cook rice perfectly while we were in Costa Rica. Also a pretty good pico. I guess my goals were mostly food-based. But the other focus was to write an album that we like.
Moon in My Mouth is such a great song. How was it written? Which piece came first?
It was written on guitar. Jasamine said she wanted to sing like Sophie B. Hawkins on it. It’s in 11/4 time so if I look very concentrated while playing only four notes it’s because I’m counting.
You’ve said it’s hard for you to edit your songwriting. Is it because you love adding more layers? Why do you think that is?
Yeah, I mean songwriting can be endless. You can work on something forever if you want and there are so many ways to do something. So sometimes it helps to have someone around who tells you when to stop, or kind of points you in the right direction. I do love layering. And texture. Because it usually leads to some more interesting sounds. But again, it helps to know when to stop.
Do you own more than one guitar? If so, which is your favorite and why?
I have three guitars. An acoustic, a hollow body electric and my Jazzmaster. I think my favorite to play and write with is the hollow body. It’s a cheap lil’ guy, Epiphone Dot series, but it’s very easy to play and sounds great out of the tiny amp I use at home. My Jazzmaster is for touring. She’s solid and looks really cool. Purple sparkles.
How many days in a row have you worn your black Tevas? How are they working out for you?
I don’t know how many days, but they’re one of two pairs of shoes I’ve brought on this tour. Sometimes when it’s chillier I wear them with socks. I love my Tevas. I’d really love if they’d hook me up with some free pairs. That would be cool…
What kind of food or drink do you seek out in a given town when you’re on tour?
A lot of the times venues will feed us so that’s what we eat. Otherwise we are big fans of any family chain-style restaurant. Olive Garden, Applebee’s, Cheesecake Factory.
What’s the first thing you want to eat when you get off tour?
Smoothie, salad, chia seeds.
What’s your favorite record store in Montreal?