Photo by Ben Rayner
Heartsrevolution were born when a cute girl from LA called Lo decided to turn up at shows and parties in a cute 1960s ice cream truck and sell cute stuff out of the back of it. The truck was called Heartschallenger and became an all-purpose vehicle dedicated to spreading cuteness.
The fact they sold weird organic ice cream, fluorescent 7-inch singles and limited print-run t-shirts by local artists with no other outlet was such a cute concept that we featured the Heartschallenger ice cream van in an episode of
Since then, the pair realised that the ditties Lo’s pal Ben had been knocking up to blare out of Heartschallenger as they sold their wares were actually really great. As an extension of the whole “everything under one roof” ethic that governs Heartschallenger’s mini-world, they decided to start performing the tracks live—from the back of the truck. Everyone went monkey-nuts about Lo and Ben’s glorified ice cream jingles and no one more so than the artist Kate Moross. Kate provided the newly christened Heartsrevolution live experience with artwork, a label and live visuals. She helped out so much Lo and Ben made her an official member of the band.
Vice: How did you two cutie pies decide to start rolling around town in a pink ice cream van?
Lo (Leyla Safai, vocals):
We worked at the same hotel in LA. I had always wanted to drive an ice cream truck and I was into riot grrrl and all that kind of stuff growing up so the idea of a totally independent little unit that could sell its own special little things that you can’t get anywhere else seemed totally logical to me.
Ben (Pollock, keyboards and effects):
And she just needed me to write some tunes which we just based on the Aphex Twin song “Flim”.
I had been a straight-edge chick in South Central until I was 14, getting shit all the time. Then I dropped out of school, went to a rave in the desert, did a bunch of drugs, heard that song and knew it would make perfect ice cream van music.
And now the tunes are more popular than the van?
Those tunes got me thrown out of my band. They were like, “It’s the band or the ice cream”. I went with the ice cream.
That’s because it’s more fun. I knew we were on to a good thing when my daughter started dancing to the songs. She comes to all our parties and hustles outside the van. She runs the show.
Do you have separate outfits for stage and ice-pop vending?
For the truck we dress pretty normal but for stage we get a little dressed up. Capes, matching hoodies, a little facepaint maybe.
We have recently got into balaclavas for the live show. They would be handy for getting ice pole out of the deep freeze.
Heartsrevolution’s “Switchblade EP” is forthcoming on Isomorph Records. myspace.com/heartsrevolution