‘Tis the season for fresh beginnings; A perfect fit for the dreamy new electro-pop synth-sounds of Uh Huh Her, back with a poetically sweet serving of music for your introspective soul.
Out with a sparkling-new EP titled Black And Blue, Los Angeles duo Camila Grey and Leisha Hailey have taken on a slightly darker and ever more so melodiously mysterious presence since their 2007 debut. Back on the tour circuit after a working absence, the constant hustle of the past few years has proved to be in large part an influence behind their new sound – an ode to ups and downs of life in general. Although it is a theme of the new, you can expect a mix on their forthcoming sophomore album, Nocturnes; “[It] was written before the EP, so it all kind of came to a head.” “We’ve both been through a lot, personally, in the last year”, adds Leisha. “The record was more the ramp to Black And Blue. The journey to the bruises.” “Also, being dropped by a label, we’ve been through so much shit, to be honest, in the past two years – all the material is kind of inspired and derived from that kind of experience of having to start from the ground up. Just life, like anybody else”, agrees Cam. “Travelling, touring non-stop, getting beaten up on the road — that definitely had a little to do with the title”.
It was in Autumn of 2008 when Uh Huh Her last came through Canada, but a restful hiatus it was not. For the past year, Cam has been touring with Adam Lambert, playing back-up keys in his live band. After an extended break from travelling together, the girls are happy to be back on the road as partners-in-crime. “We were scared coming back out because we’ve been away for so long, we weren’t sure if people would come see us again, but I’m glad they remembered”, says Leisha. Uh Huh Her’s unique sound feels effortless; a charming collection of ambiguous love songs. Being fans of artists such as Ladyhawke, Cut Copy, and Sufjan Stevens, there is a clear genre-inspired correlation and they Uh Huh Her are quickly generating a league of their own.
Sultry sound aside, Uh Huh Her’s image exudes an aura of equal mystery and luster. Contrary to claiming being clueless non-trend-setters or followers, Cam and Leisha’s style-subconscious definitely knows what’s up. “Because I’ve been living out of my suitcase for so long, I’ve literally been wearing the same outfit for a year, which is a tee-shirt, skinny jeans, and boots”, says Cam. “Cam has a really large suitcase and we can’t figure out why, because she wears the same thing everyday.” Leisha has a penchant for oversized tee shirts, tights, boots, and dresses. “Fashion is tricky, you can call us anti-fashion.” They may not know it, but the sequins like them. This is, in part, a humble contribution to their appeal.
Enter 2011 and Uh Huh Her have made their way back to Toronto, dodging literal storms throughout the Midwest to get to this East Coast leg of their North American tour. And people have definitely not forgotten. The Mod Club was filled to the max with loyal fans of the girl-variety, some still reeling off Leisha Hailey’s The L Word adoration. Although comprising the majority of their demographic, Uh Huh Her are receiving recognition on their own terms, separate from the past association. Appreciative of the music itself, the crowd was eagerly lust-induced and entranced by the girls’ cooing, soft vocals and whimsical melodies; a near hour-long set which combined tracks off of first album Common Reaction, with new, harder, and more rock-sounding songs, ending in an energy-filled encore of single Not A Love Song. Both on guitar, keys, bass, and vox (along with a backing guitarist and drummer), these girls plays their own instruments — no faux here.
And showing the Canadian nation some adoration; Justin Bieber can proudly add Uh Huh Her to his list of fangirls, as Cam admits to loving him based on fascination — and some suspicion. She has a conspiracy theory involving everybody’s favourite specialty haircut icon; “I don’t even know where he came from, he’s like a cute, talented, little alien baby”. “Cam’s got a crush”, says Leisha, who disagrees with Cam about preferring Bieber’s shaggy haircut. These are very pressing, debatable issues which should be discussed post-viewing of Justin Bieber’s “kind of amazing” movie. Suggested serving: “Have a glass of wine before you go.”
In terms of future endeavours for Uh Huh Her (other than catching tween movies in their downtime), putting together a tour with New Zealand’s Ladyhawke is on the horizon-of-potential. Leisha wants to continue with acting, as well as tapping into her visual arts creativity and taking painting more seriously; “I don’t know what the hell I’ll end up doing. Sometimes I just want to move from LA and become a little hermit.” And Cam: “I’d just like to produce and keep writing, I’m doing stuff with Adam [Lambert] at the moment, and other bands.” Suggesting they make documentary tour video blogs, it was revealed that there is a reality show in the works. It is all very enigmatic. But have no fear, they will never quit; Uh Huh Her will continue making music for the next five, ten years, and beyond.
Stay highly tuned for Uh Huh Her’s second upcoming album Nocturnes, slated for release in the Summer of 2011. Check out EP Black And Blue currently available internationally on iTunes.
Interview and Photos by Melania Fedyna