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Calva Louise have typical enough roots. Jess and Alizon met in high school, where Jess played the guitar, bass and piano, while Alizon played guitar and cello. When Jess gave Alizon a bass, he immediately had a special connection with the instrument. Some time later, they met Ben, who got his first drum kit at the age of 3. Their line up was complete.
Now, comparisons are being made with Japanese Voyeurs, and the band have become part of the burgeoning punk movement.
So, do they agree with this punk label? “Yes, we definitely agree,” Jess says, “we feel that the punk spirit runs in our blood. Being punk is much more than music, fashion or trends. It’s about being yourself and risking everything you’ve got to achieve your goals. However, musically speaking, we like to blend different genres, like garage rock and surf music.”
Jess continues: “There are a lot of artists and bands that really touch our souls and give us the drive to do the same, but it’s especially the newest bands that we discover – including ones we’ve had the pleasure of meeting in person – that inspire us the most to look out for new ideas every day. Add to this the most ridiculous and bizarre experiences we’ve had and from that mix a lot of good things come out, making the songs we play.”
As with most bands, performing in Europe is a huge ambition: “The bands that have already toured Europe make us dream about one day reaching that level and doing the same. One of the biggest young bands that we’d love to support is Slaves. There are so many good and young bands that have been touring all over the place, going from Australia to the US. It’d definitely be a great honour if one day we could go and support one of them.”
But that kind of success comes with sacrifice, and the precarious lifestyle brings no guarantee that it will all work out. Calva Louise counter this with their core vision and work ethic: “Write, compose, and create a lot of songs, as many as we can to progress and go as fast as possible. In a way, this means sacrificing our private lives to work as hard as possible every single day, to get better and better until we reach our goals.”
This dedication is paying off: Jess has been interviewed by a major US newspaper about what it is to be punk and was also a speaker at a Roundhouse event about women in music, where her answers stood out for their modesty and humility. The band may have been formed in the traditional way, but they are already starting to do new and interesting things with it. Calva Louise are a band who let their music speak for them and who know where they are heading.
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Cover photo by Andras Paul: