Exclusive interview: Chelsea Wolfe


I very rarely do non-Monday Nights, but this evening is an exception.

That’s because Chelsea Wolfe is such an rare talent. Her music is a glorious mix of contradictory feelings: melancholy/triumph, warmth/coldness, light/dark and melodic/extreme noise.

She doesn’t really sort out the confusing emotions as much as sing little soul songs about them.

I was bold with this interview. I referenced William S. Burroughs and asked Wolfe about goth. Nothing stumped her.

“Psychedelia without the drugs” is Chelsea Wolfe’s description of what she’s bringing to Pehr tonight. Read the complete interview and be amazed (there’s also an mp3 for you to listen to/download).

No, that’s not Lady Gaga taking a stroll down by the ocean—that’s the transcendental singer/songwriter Chelsea Wolfe. Her upcoming newest album, The Grime and the Glow, comes out May 18th on Pendusound, and I couldn’t be more excited. It’s been awhile since I heard a performer this total…

How would you describe your musical aesthetic?
Goth-folk-experimental stuff; spiritual realm funeral songs with a hint of Estonian industrial

When did you begin to write and perform your own music?
I started recording casio beat songs when I was 9.. the first one was a weird cover of “It’s My Party.” But I didn’t really start playing out until a few years ago.

What was the most recent song you’ve written all about?
It’s about the feeling of getting to hear someone’s last words.

William S. Burroughs once said “Language is a virus from outer space.” Where do the words for your songs come from?
Something like that! O, Burroughs. I don’t think it’s a virus though I think it’s a nice gift. I’m inspired by visuals a lot, Biblical language, the news, old films.

What can we expect from The Grime and the Glow?
All the songs were recorded on my Tascam 8-track with different people in different spaces. I usually think of songs in terms of moods so this album has a lot of dark but also a few playful moods. The LP is coming out on Pendu Sound in just a few weeks.

How did you find the musicians you play with?
Shows, houses, luck. I’m happy they stuck with me…we’ve been playing together since September.

Why is goth so popular in Southern California where it is so sunny?
Is it popular?

If you had to summarize what makes L.A. good or bad for an outsider, what would you say?
The sunny issue you brought up always makes me a little scared, but also just in general at first any new bigger city can be a bit daunting if you’re a hermit musician from Northern California. But over time you realize L.A. is full of rad people and rad places just like any other city.

What can we expect from your Pehrspace show?
Psychedelia without the drugs.

Can a song be your soulmate? If so, which song would you choose?
“Koni Priviredliviye” by Vladimir Vysotsky 99% of the time. But “Moonage Daydream” on a really good day.

Listen/download Chelsea Wolfe’s newest song “Advice & Vices” now

You are invited to see Chelesea Wolfe with Voice on Tape, Motorcycle Maus, & Felt Drawings at a very special Sean Carnage Pehrspace show tonight…

Thursday, April 22nd
Sean Carnage presents…

Voice On Tape
Chelsea Wolfe
Motorcycle Maus
Felt Drawings

Starts 9:30pm / $5 / all-ages

Pehrspace—325 Glendale Blvd., in Historic Filipinotown

Jon Barba & Deseret Rodriguez made this show possible.

We are going to have pizza too. I hope you can make it!

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