Out of all the interviews I’ve done with up-and-coming artists over the years, the name that’s most consistently come up as a musical inspiration is Yoni Wolf, the mastermind behind WHY?. It’s not exactly a surprise — he strikes a balance between art and pop that’s consistently appealing — but it had been a while in between releases before last year’s Moh Lhean and yet his shadow loomed large. Since putting out that album last year, though, WHY? has been on the road a lot, including on a tour with one of the very artists who cited him as a major influence, Lala Lala’s Lillie West.
Today, Yoni Wolf and and Band To Watch Lala Lala are releasing a collaborative song called “Siren 042.” It’s a great melding of their individual sensibilities — an elastic pop base gives an extra pep to West’s melodic malaise — and it comes along with a video where they run together through the forest and .
Both had some things to say about working together. Here’s West:
Yoni once talked me down when we were on the the strongest LSD of my life and I claimed to be ‘drowning in a river of sadness.’ I text him when I’m sick. Is he my life coach? Seems that way. I am a WHY? super fan and making this song was a dream come true. I hope to trick him into letting me into his home and more collaboration soon.
And here’s Yoni Wolf:
From the golden olden days when Lillie used to sneak backstage at WHY? shows to drink up the whole rider and taint the water supply while the band was on stage, I never would have guessed I would end up such close friends with the Lala Lala songwriter. But fate has a strange way of contorting space, time, and our better judgements. I’d say we started to get close when we sat down for my podcast and talked it all out. I feel confused. I just adore her.
Watch and listen below.
LALA LALA TOUR DATES:
01/17 Chicago, IL @ Metro +
01/18 Minneapolis, MN @ 7th Street Entry *
01/20 Milwaukee, WI @ Colectivo *
01/21 Rock Island, IL @ Rozz Tox *
01/23 Lakewood, OH @ Mahall’s *
01/24 Washington, DC @ Comet Ping Pong *
01/25 Philadelphia, PA @ PhilaMOCA *
01/26 Brooklyn, NY @ Rough Trade *
01/28 Burlington, VT @ Nectar’s *
01/29 Montreal, QC @ Casa del Popolo *
01/30 Toronto, ON @ Baby G *
01/31 Detroit, MI @ Deluxx Fluxx *
02/01 Grand Rapids, MI @ Calvin College *
02/02 Grinnell, IA @ Grinnell College *
+ w/ Snail Mail
* w/ w/ Sen Morimoto
WHY? TOUR DATES:
01/15 Hamden, CT @ Space Ballroom ^
01/16 Ithaca, NY @ The Haunt ^
01/17 Lancaster, PA @ Chameleon Club ^
01/18 Brooklyn, NY @ Brooklyn Steel #
01/19 Providence, RI @ Columbus Theater ^
01/20 Holyoke, MA @ Gateway City Arts ^
^ w/ Tomberlin
# w/ Japanese Breakfast, Hand Habits
“Single 042″ is out 1/11 via Hardly Art.