by Evan James Ceretti
Story Sheidow (guitar, vocals), Emilee Sorrey (drums, vocals), and Jesara Friesen (bass, vocals) make up the all-female power trio Coy. There are maybe only a couple of other all-female groups based on PEI, but it’s probably safe to say that Coy is currently the only hard-hitting all-female group.
Sheidow would often see Sorrey around town and would say, “We should start a band together.” Locally, Sheidow also plays in the hardcore band Uncle, and Sorrey fronts the dream pop group Sorrey. They eventually got together to chat and jam, and then asked Friesen to play bass. Coy formed in March of this year, and have quickly gained fans and stirred up some chatter. Friesen and Sheidow know each other from the Canadian punk scene in Montreal, elements of which make their way into Coy’s sound.
Sorrey describes Coy’s music as dark garage pop. “It’s got some definite punk influence and it’s met with a different style.” Sheidow added, “It’s a somber pop mixed with a grungy three-cord type punk, but pretty melody-driven too, with some harmonies to brighten things up."
The name Coy was one of many that Sheidow had up her sleeve, and it wasn’t meant to represent the band’s sound or define the group. However, Friesen said, “If we wanted to get deep, it eludes to a coydog or a coywolf, and even though it wasn’t intentional, I think we could maybe make a connection to that, and sort of the merging of a few different styles.”
Writing collectively is at Coy’s core. Upon starting the band, Shadow wanted the experience to be as organic as possible. “We write all of our songs at practice together, so it always draws form everybody and is always pulling from different places.” For everyone, being in an all-female group has proved to be a unique and rewarding experience from playing alongside males.
“We’re definitely a goal-setting band,” said Sorrey. Coy’s current plan is to keep playing and growing as a band, and to reach out to other bands who are a good fit for shows—which could be a long list, as Coy is a bit of a hybrid. “We’ve played super heavy shows, we’ve played pop shows, we kind of get to break into a lot of those different areas and be a part of several scenes,” said Sheidow. “I feel like my community of musicians is growing because of that.”
The lyrics are written by Sorrey and Sheidow. “I feel like a lot of the lyrics I bring to the table are more things I notice from a woman’s perspective of different aspects of being a person, which I think is not necessarily intentional, it just seems to be that often comes up,” said Sheidow. For Sorrey, the way she writes has been a total departure from the way she does in her other project, which is much more of a personal diary type of approach. Within Coy, Sorrey’s lyrics are about issues the members face as women—in life, in the workforce, every day.
The things Sheidow once felt were maybe inappropriate to sing about are different than now because of Coy. “I feel more comfortable now singing about women-specific issues. It is nice to feel that you’re singing on behalf of yourself, but also something that all of your bandmates can relate to. It sort of feels inappropriate when you’re doing that in a band with cis-white men.”
The band is looking forward to heading into winter with a bit of downtime and plan to focus on writing and recording, so expect to hear some tracks online soon. Coy will play its first off-Island gig in Halifax December 15.