Last Gang Records is pleased to announce the release of JOOJ’s eponymous debut album, out May 26th! Sook-Yin Lee formed JOOJ when she teamed up with Adam Litovitz for the creation of this hauntingly beautiful album. The JOOJ sound is guided by principles of minimalism, melody, and experimentalism — torch-songs from an interior, expressionistic place. Their live performance is intimate: at turns cathartic and unhinged, yet grounded. Have a listen to their track, Shoulders and Whispers, and pre-order the album now through iTunes and at the Last Gang online shop – available digitally, on CD and on special red vinyl. JOOJ will take to the stage on Friday, May 29th for a release party at Toronto’s Double Double Land, with more dates to be announced soon!
“Music is the one expression that can tap into my soul,” says Sook-Yin. “Working on this album with Adam in our private studio without distraction was like planting a beautiful garden together. It was a liberating and deep experience. We let our imaginations run free and I’m thankful to Last Gang for releasing our curiosity into the world.”
JOOJ had its origin in Sook-Yin’s video and photography exhibition We Are Light Rays at the Ottawa Art Gallery. She created a musical score that was much like a movie score. This formed the basis of songs that she and her long-time collaborator, multi-instrumentalist, writer, and film professor, Adam Litovitz, make with JOOJ. Describing their process, Adam explains: “Sometimes, they don’t feel much like choices, but more like instinctive stabs, or something that makes me feel ‘whoo-ha!’ in a gentle way, something that lets us continue our shared dream without overpowering it. It’s probably a bit like the choices we make when dreaming.”
About Sook-Yin Lee: Sook-Yin grew up in Vancouver, where she started the art-rock band Bob’s Your Uncle, before going solo and moving to Toronto. Her first job launched her into the public eye as a VJ on MuchMusic. She now hosts and co-produces the personal-storytelling program DNTO on CBC Radio One. Sook-Yin gained notoriety as the star of the groundbreaking movie Shortbus, a favourite at Cannes, and went on to write and direct the movie Year of the Carnivore, also dealing with a recurring theme: the lives of girls and young women as they navigate a confusing and difficult world.
She won the Canadian Screen Award for Best Actress in the movie Jack, and started making and performing experimental dance narratives for theatre (How Can I Forget, On Display, Incompetence). Her stories are told through music, film, video, photos, comics, movement and radio. Her songs have been covered by artists like Neko Case, and she has released albums on Last Gang (Electric Blues, with Slan, and the Genie-nominated soundtrack for her movie, co-created by Buck 65 and Adam Litovitz).
1 Shoulders and Whispers
5 Ghost of Love
8 Never Be Sure
9 Hard Feeling