by Bill Pearis
AVC: What do you think your songs are about?After spending time in various Toronto bands, Andy Smith and Carmen Elle started colaborating in 2010, settling on the name Army Girls. With a spare but charged sound powered by Elle's emotion-filled vocals, they remind me a little of Dutch band Bettie Serveert. Last year they released their debut EP, Close to the Bone, which was produced by Fucked Up's Ben Cook. You can stream it below.
CE: For as long as I can remember, I've always written about anxiety and loneliness, because those are the two common themes in my life. But recently a friend of mine was really insightful. He was like, "Well, your songs aren't really depressing at all. They seem to be all to be a struggle for survival more than anything." I guess that's the underlying note.
AVC: "The Power" seems to be explicitly about that.
CE: That song was born out of futility. I had a 20-month-long breakup. We were together for about three of those months. You know that scene in Brokeback Mountain where Heath Ledger is like, "I wish I knew how to quit you"? It's kind of that, in a song.
AVC: The two-piece band has seemed to have a comeback, from The White Stripes to Japandroids. Why do you think they're so appealing?
AS: I mean obviously, the dynamic between two people is considerably different. These days, for most bands, money is a huge issue, and it's a lot easier to tour as a two-piece.
CE: Even numerically it's appealing; people just generally prefer two of anything. The onus is on us to create a music experience that is comparable to a proper band. I just bought a bass pedal so I can make the guitar sound like a bass whenever I want it to.
AS: Yeah, I'd never thought about that before.
CE: But it's a beautiful thing, there's a male-female dynamic. I don't want to be filthy, but it's kind of like the intimacy of having sex versus the extravagance of being in an orgy. Sure there's more energy going around, but nobody is getting the full experience. But when it's just two people...
AS: Everybody's getting off. [AV Club Toronto]
Army Girls are currently on tour with PS I Love You. That tour comes to NYC this weekend, hitting Mercury Lounge tonight (5/25) (tickets) and Glasslands on Saturday (5/26) (tickets), and Army Girls are worth showing up early to catch. Neither show is sold out. All tour dates with PS I Love You are listed below.
Army Girls / PS I Love You - 2012 Tour Dates
5/25 - Mercury Lounge- New York, NY
5/26- Glasslands - Brooklyn, NY
5/28 - The Outer Space - Hamden, CT
5/29 - The Capital Complex - Fredericton, NB
5/30 - Hunters Ale House - Charlottetwon, PE
5/31 - Michael's - Halifax, NS
6/2 - Il Motore - Montreal, QC
6/9 - The Grad Club - Kingston, ON