Jessie Stein and the Luyas Are Happy To Be Home

Luyas Luyas

Lead singer of the Luyas, Jessie Stein, sounds happy to be home.

“I did yoga today,” she says. “We got home, unpacked the van, and stopped driving. I got to stretch out after all the sitting. It’s really nice to spend time with my boyfriend and do some exercise. We’re seeing the new Coen brothers movie. It’s been a nice relaxing day.”

Since releasing Animator in October 2012, the Luyas have been mostly on tour. They traveled across the US and Canada in support of the album. “We didn’t get to go to a few places we wanted to,” says Stein in regards to a prior leg of the tour. “We went to them on this trip.”

“The US is very different this time of year,” she says when asked to compare the two countries. “We have more support overall in Canada, I would say. But America is really exciting to play. In big cities we always have nice crowds. We’ve mostly toured in the States and Europe. In Canada, we always do Toronto, Montreal and Ottawa, but didn’t put in the long haul of actually touring Canada as an extreme sport until this time.”

The tour had many highlights for Stein. “We did a few shows, maybe five or six, on the west coast with Califone. They’re a super inspiring band and it was great to watch them play. They’re really creative.”

One thing that impressed Stein was the enthusiasm she found in Canada. “This last little run across Canada has given me a lot of respect for the musical communities across the country in all the little places. It’s wonderful to see how people are thriving and investing their time and energy. It’s really beautiful. Young people are doing awesome things.”

Winnipeg in particular made an impression. “We did a bunch of shows in the Prairies,” she said. “There was lots of blowing snow and they were great shows. We had amazing shows in towns I wouldn’t have expected like Winnipeg and Saskatoon. They have amazing energy. It’s so cold there that I don’t know how those people leave their houses.”

She elaborates further. “Our Winnipeg show was really inspiring. It was incredible,” she says. “There was a bunch of people and they were all super engaged. Everyone was open-hearted and listening and having fun. Because of the brutal temperature, everyone had to make an effort to be there.”

Freezing temperatures greeted Stein back in Montreal. Stein says, “I’m readjusting to Montreal weather. I grew up here. I was born and raised here, but for last year and a half, I’ve been spending time in New York in the winter. I just forgot how terrible it can be.”

She adds, “I just walked outside. My face almost fell off.”

As for the final show in Montreal, she’s looking forward to it. “It’s going to be fun,” she says. “It’ll be like a celebration party. We’ve been a band for a long time and it’s always fun to play at home and have all our friends be there. I think it’ll be a lovely time.”

The Luyas are already planning for their next album. “We’re just at the beginning,” says Stein, “But we’re intentionally starting it now. We’re not giving ourselves a deadline and probably won’t be recording it for quite a few months. We’re going to take a lot of time on it. Hopefully it will stand the test of time if we give it a little time.”

The Luyas play at Divan Orange (4234 St. Laurent) on January 23rd. 9:30 p.m. $10/12

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