Sunday, December 16, 2012

Chicago musician Deanna Devore releases intoxicating new album, will perform at Schubas next month


On her new EP, "X Number Of Days," Deanna Devore's intoxicating voice floats above a hypnotic blend of electronic beats and acoustic guitar.

Her unique musical vision has led her to work with the likes of drummer Matt Walker, known for his work with Filter, Smashing Pumpkins and Garbage. Devore will perform Jan. 10 at Schubas Tavern, 3159 N. Southport Ave. Chicago, as part of a CD release party for "X Number Of Days."

The Loneliest Monk and Leslie Hunt also are part of the bill. The show starts at 8 p.m., and tickets are $8, available at 

I had the chance to talk to Devore,,  about the new album and her influences. 

Q - What goals did you have for the album and do you think you accomplished them?

I wanted to make an album that accurately represents the current sound I am going for. One that is a mix of electronica and real instrumentation. 

Some songs are more electronic and synth driven, while others are more acoustic guitar driven. It was hard to find a balance of both without feeling that one was lost over the other, but I think I achieved it and I’m happy with the end result.

Q - What made you want to move from Toronto to Chicago? How does the Chicago music scene differ from the one in Toronto?

I came to Chicago purely for the purpose of recording with a producer/engineer back in 2006. I had never been there before and over the course of about six months I met a lot of musicians and really took a liking to the city.

Toronto, like Chicago, is a great city. Now, I haven’t spent too much time being a part of the Toronto music scene since I’ve been in Chicago for a while, but from what I gather, Toronto has a big indie/rock scene. 

And I feel that Chicago has more of folk/Americana type of music. That’s not to say that either city doesn’t have other types of music, but when I hear music from a lot of Chicago artists, they seem to fall more into that category.

Q - Do you think the success of Canadian bands like Arcada Fire has spurred new interest in bands from Canada?

I think there’s always been a lot of talented artists coming from Canada, but many of them don’t “break into” the American market, which is unfortunate. 

Arcade Fire is one of those lucky bands that made it. And with that came a huge wave of Canadian indie music like Broken Social Scene, Metric, Feist, etc., breaking through as well. There became a bit of an indie revolution, so to speak.

Q - I understand that your interest in Brazilian music comes from your dad. How do you think your parents have influenced your music? What were your goals in starting out as a musician?

A lot of people have a hard time pinpointing the genre of my music, which can be a good and bad thing. I think a lot of it has to do with the music I grew up with. 

My parents wanted me to be exposed to many different types of music and I think they are a big reason why both my taste in music and the music I write is so diverse.

As far as my goals in starting out as a musician, I was a musician at a very young age. I wrote and played instruments when I was a kid and just loved writing for the sake of writing. 

I would sit down with a guitar and write a song without any sort of idea or goal in mind. Of course I wanted to grow up and be successful, but I think there was a sort of innocence and “love for the music” I had when I started out.

Q - How was working with Matt Walker and what did the experience teach you?


Matt only played on one of the songs on the last album. He’s not just a fantastic drummer, but an all around great guy - very approachable and easy to talk to. 

It was great to work with someone who has played with so many successful artists, a very humbling experience.

Q - Where do you see yourself fitting into the Chicago music scene? What are your short-term and long-term goals?

I think my music can be seen as different stylistically compared to a lot of other artists coming out of the Chicago music scene. But what is great about the Chicago music scene is that it is very accepting of diversity. 

You can be paired up with other artists on the bill that aren’t similar sonically and everyone is still really receptive. I’ve had great feedback in Chicago.

My short term goal is to have a successful EP release show in Chicago. Good turnout, press, reviews, etc. 

It’s been a couple of years since I’ve released something, so I really want to push this new album. With that said, the long term goal would be for this album to hopefully reach a broader audience. 

Lots of marketing, which does seem like the hardest part of being an artist. Creativity comes easily, the business side, not so much. 

I’d love to do more extensive touring in the hopes of promoting this album and just really try to get my name out there.