The last time we heard from the Montreal songwriter Helena Deland, it was with her four-part EP series Altogether Unaccompanied in 2018. After those and other EPs, she’s kept busy, opening for artists like Weyes Blood, Connan Mockasin, and Iggy Pop, and collaborating with JPEGMAFIA. Now, she’s apparently gearing up for a long-awaited debut album. In the meantime, she’s returned with a new single called “Lylz.”
In a way, the inspiration to “Lylz” goes back over a hundred years. It’s influenced by the story of early 20th century French composer Lili Boulanger and her sister Nadia, who carried on with Lili’s musical legacy after Lili’s death at a young age. All these years later, Deland’s friend Lylz arranged a concert of the sisters’ compositions, and now “Lylz” exists as a sort of tribute to sisterly connection.
Deland shared this statement with The Fader:
“Lylz” is about the aching forever-after of female friendship. It follows the promises of two people who share a dissatisfaction with the state of things, and so project themselves into a more interesting future full of adventure and recognition.
The opening verse collapses both friendships into one: “Lylz/ You don’t need to worry/ We’ve got this/ I’ve got my driver’s license/ And you will need to practice/ We’ll leave on the sly/ Blasting the Boulanger sisters/ And if one of us dies/ The other will make sure/ Her life’s work goes down in history.” Deland sings it all over a wispy, dreamy track that effectively blurs the lines between history, personal memory, and the present. Check it out below.
“Lylz” is out now via Luminelle Recordings.