The Luyas are a Canadian indie rock band formed in 2006 from Montreal, Quebec, Canada.
The Luyas did their first live performance in December 2006. Their first album, Faker Death came out in August 2007, and was re-released in January 2008 on Pome Records; that label was subsequently disbanded and the album’s distribution rights were picked up by You’ve Changed Records.
Jessie Stein, formerly active in SS Cardiacs, is also a member of Miracle Fortress, and is the sister of By Divine Right’s José Miguel Contreras. Amato and Schneider are both members of Bell Orchestre, Amato also plays in Torngat and was formerly a horn player for Arcade Fire.
The band uses an uncommon set of instruments featuring guitars, a French horn, piles of keyboards, drums and percussion. Singer/guitarist Jessie Stein expands the band’s musical vocabulary when she plays the Moodswinger, a 12-string electric zither designed by the Dutch experimental luthier Yuri Landman. The band became a four piece band with the addition of Mathieu Charbonneau in their line-up.
The Luyas were profiled by McSweeneys in the spring of 2010. In the same year the band signed to Dead Oceans for a release of their second album. Working with engineer Jeff McMurrich (Tindersticks, Constantines), The Luyas have also teamed up with friend and colleague Owen Pallett, who is lending his arranging skills and violin playing to a number of tracks.
The Luyas released their second album Too Beautiful to Work on Dead Oceans in February 2011. The Canadian release of the record was also in February 2011 via a new imprint called Idée Fixe Records.
On January 9th, 2012, the band announced that Stefan Schneider would no longer be playing with the band, stating, “We love him, but he’s got other plans.”. Schneider was replaced by former Land of Talk drummer, Mark Wheaton.
Their third studio album, Animator, was announced with an October 16, 2012, release date on Paper Bag Records.