Lindsey Troy and Julie Edwards met at a crocheting class in Silver Lake in 2011. From there, the duo has emerged as a sort of rock 'n' roll Thelma and Louise; hitting the road at a relentless pace and proving that you don't need a bass player or a pair of testicles to reclaim the spirit of '70s-style rock and roll.
L.A. natives, they play with bone-crushing ferocity, with Edwards behind the drum kit and Troy spouting petrol-soaked guitar licks and soaring vocals. “I think to be a rock star in the most classic, debaucherous, hell raising sense,” Troy says, “you have to be a bit of a sociopath.”
Troy's musical influences range from the blues of Blind Willie McTell to the vocals of Tina Turner and Robert Plant. Edwards, who began as a keyboardist/drummer with The Pity Party, brings a Keith Moon-inspired showmanship and musical chops on par with drummers including Meg White of The White Stripes and Carla Azar of Autolux.
Deap Vally's debut LP Sistrionix, already out in the UK, has Brits infatuated with the duo's in your face sexuality and unrefined Americana. During the group's crotch-grabbing set during this year's Glastonbury Festival, Troy crowd-surfed in shredded tights.
Similarly, onstage Edwards transforms into a blur of swinging red hair and flying limbs. She plays the drums barefoot. “I'm a cavewoman,” she explains.
This week, Deap Vally returns to L.A. after sledgehammering their way through worldwide festivals including Coachella, Glastonbury, and Lollapalooza. Their show tonight at the Troubadour is their last stop in L.A. before the major label stateside release of Sistrionix on October 8th.
“I'm curious to see what it will be like playing in L.A. after having not played here for so long,” says Troy, whose early solo artist career was inspired by Courtney Love and '90s-era punk.
Last month, Deap Vally released the single “Bad for My Body,” which features lyrics like “If our mothers only know / the trouble that we get into.”
“My attitude is not giving a fuck,” says Edwards.
Their music is quite substantive: “Your Love” is a reverb-heavy jam that breaks down gender barriers and makes the man the song's object of affection: “You've got the face that launched a thousand ships,” the song goes, “You've got the hands that touched a thousand hips / You are mine / You belong to me.”
“A woman's beauty is the theme of so much great art,” Troy says. “I thought it was time a man's beauty was discussed.”
Considering that festival gigs throughout North America and Europe have Deap Vally booked through the fall, one might expect them to slow down for a moment — possibly take a crocheting break — and enjoy some downtime in L.A.
But if their blistering 45-minute set at Lollapalooza last weekend was any indication, these Vally girls won't stop until they've pulverized crowds around the world into submission.