Planetary Group took some time to get to know Deanna Petcoff, an artist from Toronto with a strong grasp of anthemic indie.
Planetary Group: Tell us about your latest release. How did you come to create it?
Deanna: My new song is called “Failing Upwards” and I wrote it about two years ago. We started putting it together as a band right before the pandemic hit, and then we finally got to record it in the summer of 2020. The song is super important to me because we kind of used it as a guiding light for the rest of this record.
And it was sort of the first song of the new era of this project. It kind of came out of the pandemic, which was obviously really tough time, but also made me really look at who I am as an artist and what I want to talk about and the honesty that I wanted to portray in my songs.
PG: Share a bit about your musical journey, from when you first started making music until now.
Deanna: I joined my first band in 2012 was called Pins and Needles – I have a sweet little sewing needle tattoo to commemorate them – and then I started my solo project in 2018. Since then have been really working on honing in on what I want to sound like and who I am as an artist, which is always evolving, always changing. And I feel really lucky that I get to do that and explore that with some amazing co-creators and my band, which I love.
PG: Let’s talk about the music that you love. Pick one album for each category below & tell us a bit about it!
- An album you grew up listening to:
Deanna: I Love Rock N’ Roll was on my heavy rotation when I was like in eighth grade. I had a record player and I owned a secondhand copy of that record, and I literally played it until it didn’t play anymore – which was the most depressing day. Yeah, Joan Jett was a huge inspiration on me. I had the shag haircut. It was NOT a vibe. But I’m sure if you wanted to dig up a photo of that, you could, which I hope you don’t…
- The album that influences you the most as an artist:
Deanna: Probably Antisocialites by Alvvays. When I heard that record, it opened up a lot of doors for me, for the fact that it could be like a very punk record, that was also very soft and emotional. And the complexity of the lyrics really, you know, hit something in my brain that was kind of like, okay, I think I could do that. And I listen to that record to this day. I love it so much.
- The album you currently have on repeat:
Deanna: Cool Dry Place by Katy Kirby. I love her work. I think she’s absolutely incredible. Her songwriting is wonderful and all the tones on that record… it’s so warm, so lush, everything I could have hoped for. So I really love that. It was great during quarantine to have that.
PG: What do you want people to take away from your music?
Deanna: I think the number one thing I want people to take away from my music is feeling seen and heard in a way that I have felt by other artists that I look up to. I know that so many people try to put heartbreak and being a human into words and into song, and I never get tired of hearing that. I think that, you know, being in love and having your heart broken and all the things that come along with that are incredibly complicated. And I hope to be a voice that someone turns to when they need to hear how they feel repeated back to them, which is something that I try to do constantly. So I would really love for people to feel seen and heard through me.
PG: What’s next up for you?
Deanna: We’re releasing another single at the end of this year and then more music next year as well. I would really love to go on tour. I’m waiting to make sure that everything is safe COVID-wise – I don’t want anybody to feel unsafe at any of my shows and that’s a number one thing for me. Obviously things are turning for the better, but I really can’t wait to see everybody and hopefully sing our hearts out to Failing Upwards!
So learn it for the show. We’ll sing!
Thanks to Deanna for speaking with us! Watch the video for her latest single “Failing Upwards” below.