Radar Band Of The Week – No.52: Love Inks

Love Inks

If you’re after a straight answer, Love Inks’ singer Sherry LeBlanc is not the person to question. Ask her about her wildest times on the road, and she’ll tell you how she nearly decapitated a cyclist in New Orleans (“I accidentally opened my door as he was pedalling by and totally wiped him out. Luckily he just cracked a thumbnail”). Ask her what Love Inks’ most ubiquitous track, the seductive ‘Black Eye’, is about and she’ll tell you a story about a member of fellow Austin-dwellers Harlem getting a shiner and ending up on the front page of the local paper.


Then she’ll tell you it’s not really about that at all (“I got my facts all mixed up. It’s a pretty good one though, right?”) And ask her about upcoming single ‘Rock On’ – a scratchy, bass-heavy cover of pube-haired dreamboat David Essex’s 1973 hit – and she’ll yelp, “David Essex was such a babe back in the day!” Not that Sherry’s in the market for an aging sugar daddy: she and Love Inks bassist Kevin Dehan are married. If that’s not cosy enough, guitarist Adam Linnell and Kevin have been bezzie mates since they were teenagers. “I’m not sure how people imagine it,” says Sherry. “But there’s not a lot of lovey stuff going on with us on the road.”

The romance, it seems, was saved for the record. ‘ESP’ – recorded on a battered old eight-track and released in May via Italian label Hell, Yes – is a 10-song ode to understatement and nonchalance that drifts along blissfully yet resolutely, sounding both the epitome and antithesis of modern pop. “We’ve been told we sound like the lovechild of Stevie Nicks and The xx, which is very flattering!” squeaks Sherry. “The most basic description is minimalist pop. It’s bass, guitar and a drum machine being played very carefully.” So it’s all good in camp Love Inks then? “Not quite. Apparently David Essex still has a strong fan base of middle-aged women who are angry with how we’ve treated his song. There’s been some nasty feedback on blogs from diehard fans. My mom read the comments and was really upset. Essex fans, please be nice so you don’t upset my mom!”

Mike Williams

Need To Know

Based: Austin, Texas

For Fans Of: The xx, Beach House


Next Gig: They’ve just announced their first ever UK tour, starting in Bristol on September 21

Buy It: Debut album ‘ESP’ is out now

Believe It Or Not: Sherry wants to collaborate with James Blake. “When we got to New Orleans yesterday we called the college radio station and requested they play him,” she says. “Maybe he’d like to collaborate with us? James, are you reading?!”