“Heaven Tonight “is my new work in progress/love-hate relationship. I’m working on it at the moment, and wanted to share a bit more about Ava & The Mechanics, the band Heaven tours with…It’s non-edited and kinda fresh, here we go…
Ava & The Mechanics – Girl Just Wants To Have Fun
by Tim Dawn – originally posted on MusicTillDawn, Aug 15th. 2013.
«I’m having the time of my life !», exclaims Ava Lovebites (her real name, she claims). The 25 years-old singer is sitting with me in a Brooklyn café and is bursting with excitement : her upcoming tour is almost sold-out, and her band’s new album “True Exit”, is now n° 1 on the Indie charts.
“This is surreal”, she adds, “but I know we’ve done something good”.
Since their first demoes surfaced, a little less than three years ago, Ava & The Mechanics gained a lot of devotees and attention, mostly due to to Ava, her pink hair and the contagious energy she brings on stage. But she insists « Ava & The Mechanics is a band, not just me ». The Mechanics (« my boys » as she likes to call them) consists in four members from Bless, a hardcore band Ava used to work with on the road « one day, Tom [Diangelo, guitarist] told me they were done. I called them the following night, telling them I was working on songs and that I needed a full band. We all know each other really well and I loved their music, so it made sense. I paid for pizzas and they were in. »
The transition from hardcore to the synth-pop glory of The Mechanics must have been complicated, I ask. Ava protests « No, they’re all loving it. Luke [Stone, drummer] is a popfreak, to be honest. He loves Katy Perry ! ». Fair enough then. We talk a bit about influences : « We like to be unique, but I’m not complaining when people compare us to Metric » she smiles. Other names I see mentioned involves the likes of Paramore, Blondie, and … Ke$ha. « Well people like putting everyone in the same box, I guess ». She shrugs. There’s definitely a need for street credibility in Ava’s behaviour : Warped Tour, SXSW, Bamboozle, her band tries to stick to the indie circuit as much as they can. « We love it » Ava says, almost defensively, « It’s what we grew up with. I come from the punk community, so yes, touring festivals and small venues is awesome, I have no problems with that ». Will she, as speculated on the internet, be the new face of Diet Coke, whose drinks incidentally appear their latest video ? « They asked, I said maybe. I just want to have fun, really ». She doesn’t seem to be willing to talk more about it, so let’s go back to her story.
She tells me she comes from a tiny town in Michigan, « where nothing happens » and left when she was eighteen to pursue a degree in music in New-York. She performed in bars, with a keyboard and some effects, and then went on the road with bands « I was helping them with merch tables and not to be lost on the road » she laughs. « But I was fascinated with seeing them performing every night. I loved the crowd, the energy, everything. So when Bless split-up, I knew it was my chance, it was my turn ».
Their first album, « Fantasy Castle », produced by Brian W Patterson of Owl fame, is an explosion of synth-pop and glitter. « True Exit » is much, much different, Ava explains : « After being on the road for so long, we just wanted something more organic. There’s so much space for guitars in this album. We allowed ourselves to go back to our punk roots ». The first single « Hide », an ode to a mysterious ex-lover, is almost post-rock, and shocked more than a fan « It’s a risk, admits Ava, smiling. But I want people to be surprised. It’s not good to stay the same, all the time. » And who’s the « invisible man » she sings about ? She stares at me : « Someone from the past. He passed away not so long ago, I figured I could write about him to conjure things ». A pause « I’m sure he knows I’m still having fun here, somehow ». Does she refer to Jesse Mayer, the young singer-songwriter (also signed on Caramel rds, Ava’s label) killed in a car accident last year? I’ll never know. Ava excuses herself “I really have to go now, I’m already late for rehearsals. But this was fun!”
True Exit is out now on Caramel rds.