by Bill Pearis
LA Record: How would you describe your music to a child?Madison, Wisconsin's enigmatic Zola Jesus (real name Nika Roza) is playing a one-off show at Cake Shop on Saturday (2/20). Posessed with a haunting wail, comparisons to Diamanda Galas, Siouxsie and Karin Andersson are not inappropriate. Check out the MP3s at the top of this post, especially "Night" which is from her new 12", Stridulum, which is out March 9 on Sacred Bones. I really dig the pulsing, slow-build arrangement and the production cuts way back on the reverb -- her voice doesn't need it. The Saturday line-up at Cake Shop is well chosen, Blacklist, Cult of Youth and White Ring.
Nika Roza: I tried to do this with my cousin. She's an aspiring goth. I am trying to turn her into a weirdo. 'It's like pop music but it's really noisy and there's opera.' I would probably say, 'This sounds like Hannah Montana' and let their minds adjust. 'This is what Hannah Montana can also sound like.' There's got to be a Nickelodeon Black. If you turn on TV you see people yelling things and vomiting colors. But when I was growing up seeing cartoons they would have a lot of snot and bodily fluids and weird things. What is going to happen to this new generation? But I would tell the 7-year-old child it was the Apocalypse. You know what, fuck that. There's nudity and language--let them see it! If not, they will turn into bigger creeps. You have to expose children to stuff like that. You gotta be ready.
If you can't make Saturday's show, she'll be back again on April 9 opening for Xiu Xiu and Tune-Yards at Bowery Ballroom Tickets are still on sale. She'll also be at SXSW. All dates, along with a video for "Clay Bodies" and a flyer for the Cake Shop show...
Zola Jesus - Clay Bodies
Zola Jesus - 2010 Tour Dates
Feb 20 Cake Shop NYC, New York
Feb 25 Angelos Frentzos / PLASTIC / Milan Fashion Week Milan
Mar 6 Project Lodge -- EP RELEASE Madison, Wisconsin
Mar 13 Beat Kitchen -- EP RELEASE Chicago, Illinois
Mar 17 SXSW Austin, Texas
Mar 18 SXSW -- OTHER MUSIC Austin, Texas
Mar 19 SXSW Austin, Texas
Mar 20 SXSW Austin, Texas
Mar 21 SXSW Austin, Texas
Mar 31 Echo Curio Los Angeles, Wisconsin
Apr 3 Lincoln Hall w/XIU XIU Chicago, Illinois
Apr 9 Bowery Ballroom w/XIU XIU NYC, New York
Apr 10 Purchase College Purchase, New York