Tag: Hot (Don't Date A Musician)

New Video: Dream Wife Shares Tongue-in-Cheek Ripper “Hot (Don’t Date a Musician)”

Deriving their name from a pointed criticism of society’s objectification of women, the acclaimed London-based JOVM mainstays Dream Wife — Rakel Mjöll (vocals) (she/her), Alice Go (guitar, vocals) (she/her) and Bella Podapec (bass, vocals) (they/them) — can trace their origins back to 2015 when the trio started the band as a art project, rooted in a unique concept: a band born out of one girl’s memories of growing up in Canada in the 1990s.

The London-based outfit’s 2018 self-titled debut was released to widespread critical acclaim, and led to the the trio opening for GarbageThe Kills and Sleigh Bells, as well as playing that year’s SXSW. Building upon a growing international profile, the members of Dream Wife also went on a series of headlining tours across the European Union and the States, which included a Rough Trade stop with New York-based genre-defying artist Sabri

Dream Wife’s 2020 Marta Salogni-produced So When You Gonna . . . saw the JOVM mainstays writing and recording their most urgent and direct material to date. Thematically touching upon abortion, miscarriage and gender equality, the album’s material is fueled by a “it’s-now-or-never” immediacy. The album’s material seemed to be a call to action to the listener, to get up off their ass and do what they can to get things right. The album was a critical and commercial success, especially in the UK: The album landed at #18 on the UK Albums Chart, making it the only album in the Top 20 to be produced by an all womxn/non-male production and engineering team — and the only non-major label release to chart that high. 

Dream Wife’s highly-anticipated third album, Social Lubrication is slated for a June 9, 2023 release through Lucky Number. Throughout their career, the band has managed to be remarkably adept at merging the political and the playful, and the forthcoming album continues upon that reputation. Forcefully vital statements are hidden within hot and heavy dance floor anthems about making out, having fun, staying curious. In the band’s words, the album is: “Hyper lusty rock and roll with a political punch, exploring the alchemy of attraction, the lust for life, embracing community and calling out the patriarchy. With a healthy dose of playfulness and fun thrown in.”

That sense of fun and openness about everything is central to the albums material. “There is a sense of fun and openness that is central to Social Lubrication, as well. “There’s a lot of lust in this album and taking the piss out of yourself and everyone you know,” Dream Wife’s Rakel Mjöll says. “It’s almost quite juvenile in that way.”

Interestingly, more than ever before, the live show is at the core of the album. “The live show is the truth of the band,” Alice Go says. “That’s at the heart of what we do and of the statements we’re making.” That energetic, pedal-to-the-metal sound explodes through the album’s material — and you can hear it through the loud, dirty riffs and choruses specifically built for dancing and shaking asses together in shared spaces. For the band’s Go, who produced the album, it was important to bottle this joyful, frenetic feeling within each other. “We wanted to get that rawness and energy across in a way that hadn’t been done before,” she says.

The live show is where the band and fans come together in shared moment of community. And to that end, the album is a celebration of community and a big ol’ middle finger to the societal barriers enforced to sever connection, playfulness, curiosity and even sexual empowerment. “Music is one of the only forms of people experiencing an emotion together in a visceral, physical, real way,” says Go. “It’s cathartic to the systemic issues that are being called out across the board in the record. Music isn’t the cure, but it’s the remedy. That’s what Social Lubrication is: the positive glue that can create solidarity and community.” 

“The album is speaking to systemic problems that cannot be glossed over by lube,” the band’S Bella Podpadec says. “The things named in the songs are symptoms of f-ed up structures. And you can’t fix that. You need to pull it apart.”

Late last year, I wrote about “Leech,” an urgent, post-punk inspired ripper that saw the band’s Mjöll alternating between spoken-word-like delivery for the song’s verses and feral shouting for the song’s choruses. Mjöll’s vocal delivery is paired with an alternating song structure that features looping and wiry guitar bursts for the song’s verses and explosive, power chord-driven riffage for the song’s choruses. While the song is a tense, uneasy and forceful, mosh pit friendly anthem for our uncertain, fucked up time, “Leech” addresses the inherent double standards of power — while urgently calling for more empathy.”

“It’s an anthem for empathy. For solidarity,” the JOVM mainstays explain. “Musically tense and withheld, erupting to angry cathartic crescendos. The push and pull of the song lyrically and musically expands and contracts, stating and calling out the double standards of power. Nobody really wins in a patriarchal society. We all lose. We could all use more empathy. As our first song to be released in a while, we wanted to write something that feels like letting an animal out of a cage. It’s out. And it’s out for blood…”

The album’s second single “Hot (Don’t Date A Musician)” is a hilarious, Gang of Four-like, tongue-in-cheek ripper inspired by Mjöll’s grandmother’s sage advice — despite the fact that she herself, dated many musicians in her day — while wryly poking fun at musicians and the music adjacent, the band included. “Dating musicians is a nightmare,” Mjöll explains. “Evoking imagery of late night make-outs with fuckboy/girl/ambiguously-gendered musicians on their mattress after being seduced by song-writing chat. The roles being equally reversed. Having a laugh together and being able to poke fun at ourselves is very much at the heart of this band. This song encapsulates our shared sense of humour. Sonically it is the lovechild of CSS and Motorhead. It has our hard, live, rock edge combined with cheeky and playful vocals.”

Directed by Bethany Fitter and featuring a concept by Fitter and the members of Dream Wife, the accompanying video employs the use of the classic, follow the bouncing ball to sing along technique, split with someone swiping on profiles on a Tinder-like app. It’s a send up on dating app life that feels — well, familiar.