A few years ago a magical world was created; one where beautiful lesbians frolic around the sunny pastures of Los Angeles with their new wave haircuts and insatiable appetites for love. This world is also known as The Real L Word, a reality television show that follows the lives and sexual encounters of a few impeccably hot lesbians. Now in its third season, The Real L Word has gained a cult-like following, with a variety of genders and sexualities calling themselves fans.
In the latest season, which aired this summer, The Real L Word ventured into the uncharted terrains of lesbian Brooklyn. This is where the audience, (including myself), was introduced to alternative rock band Hunter Valentine. Throughout the course of nine episodes we come in close contact with the musical and romantic styling’s of Kiyomi, Laura, Vero and Somer.
Without ruining the show for all you newbies, the band’s drama played out something like this:
Kiyomi begins the show in a non-monogamous toxic relationship with emo girl Ali. Eventually she meets dimepiece Lauren and they fall madly in love, creating the cutest couple ever known. During this budding new courtship, Kiyomi and Somer, (Hunter Valentine’s newest member), start fighting. In the season finale Somer is asked to leave the band and is replaced by cat-lover Aimee. Yes, she’s a lesbian too.
Now on to what really matters, the music. Hunter Valentine has been around for quite some time. They first got their start eight years ago back in Southern, Ontario. They’ve since released two albums and dropped their latest LP Collide and Conquer today via Megaforce/Sony. The record is the perfect mix of hard-hitting punk rock, empowered indie-pop and relatable love ballads. It’s an eclectic mixtape that can be used for your breakup blues, lover’s remorse and the inevitable self-loathing that follows.
Last Friday I sat down with lead singer Kiyomi before Hunter Valentine’s headlining gig at the Cellar. And in a short fifteen minutes she solidified my growing girl crush and temporary hate of the opposite sex. Check out my interview below:
Describe your new album in five words or less?
Melodic, gritty, hard-driving. It’s a really good balance between hard and soft.
Dinah Shore or Disneyland?
Dinah Shore. I’d do it again. Well now that I have a girlfriend maybe Disneyland.
If you could collaborate with one band to make an album, who would it be and why?
Muse or the Distillers.
What makes the perfect make out song?
It takes a lot of honesty. Telling your own personal story. If you’re writing from the heart and it’s about your passion for somebody or how you wanna fuck them, then that’s going to come across in the song.
Hunter Valentine now resides in Brooklyn but is it safe to say that you’ll always have a love affair with Canada?
Of course! We’re trying to reignite that fire again. We went back to Toronto and sold out the Horseshoe. And we sold out Ottawa. We’re gunna eventually try and hit Alberta as well as the rest of the prairies. Those were some of our first tours.
Do you think recording in Toronto influenced your new sound?
I think Greig Nori (Treble Charger) did and he produced it.
How does Collide and Conquer differ from your first two albums?
With the first two albums we were still learning about ourselves as musicians and learning about the song writing process. With Lessons From the Late Night we started writing more as a band and experimenting with harder sounds like screaming. This album is a good blend of the pop mentality from the first record and the hardness that was seen on the second record.
How do you think the exposure from the Real L Word has changed your demographic?
It’s definitely increased our fan base but that could also be the new record. I think people were introduced to the music through the show and then had a choice; they could either hate it but still watch the show or they could come out to support. And right now we have a lot more supporters than we did before.
Do you think your straight following has increased since being on the show?
We’ve always had a straight following but I do have a lot of straight girls who are fans of me via the show who are now questioning things.
What can we expect from Hunter Valentine in the next coming months?
We’re on our way to Japan and hopefully to Australia later this year. We’ve got a video for our new single Liar Liar coming out in a matter of days and we’re just gunna keep pushing it.
Interview by @clarkbs