With their new album ‘Crocus‘ out this week, Sept 24th, via Joyful Noise Recordings, The Ophelias are sharing the title-track and video from the album online now. The band will also be hosting an album listening party and Q&A on their YouTube channel on Sept 22nd at 7pm EST/ 12am BST, which you can tune into here.
Speaking about the new track and video, Spencer Peppet of The Ophelias said “An old friend said that the first song on an album should be an overture, a thesis statement, a prologue. Crocus the album wasn’t written in order, but the line “I hope that you are happier now/ but I hope that you dream of me” became a throughline. My life has changed since this song was written, but reflecting on the past can sometimes offer clarity. I’m asking, was this relationship as meaningful and important for you as it was for me? And extending a gentle threat- “I hope I’m always a phone call closer than you thought I would be.” I recorded a demo of this song that sounds very close to how the final track turned out. Very rarely do I request to stick this close to the original demo, but I wanted this song to stay as intimate as it began. The noise at the very beginning is me turning on a sink- I wanted to emulate the feedback at the beginning of “Dusted” by Guided by Voices, and the sound of the tap running reminded me of that.
This video centers on light: what the presence or absence of light can do, how it forms around a person, how colors filter and morph. We got to shoot this in Chicago with Alex Halstead, who shot the videos for Neil Young on High and Sacrificial Lamb, and a crew of immensely talented people. Since this song is very intimate, we decided it made sense for the video to focus on me. We played with movement, choreographing some parts and experimenting in others. Jo, who co-directed, says they focused on how the movement, light, and shadow mirrored the melody line. I also repaired, dyed, and beaded the corset myself!”
After 2018’s critically acclaimed Almost opened The Ophelias to a world beyond their Cincinnati home, the indie rock quartet craved a return to a sense of community. “It was surreal for this time capsule of events and feelings, songs written early in college, to be reviewed in outlets like the New York Times,” recalls vocalist/guitarist Spencer Peppet (she/her). The band members no longer lived in the same city—Peppet and new bassist/longtime music video collaborator Jo Shaffer (they/them) live in New York, while drummer Mic Adams (he/him) and violinist Andrea Gutmann Fuentes (she/her) remained in Ohio. In the time since Almost, a fair amount changed: the band members all graduated from college, Shaffer joined as the new bassist, and Adams came out as transgender and started HRT. So when it came time to record the candid, expansive Crocus (due September 24th via Joyful Noise Recordings), The Ophelias purposefully focused on the experimental, communal spirit that fueled their first record. Through songs equally infused with references to the Bible and TheTwilight Zone, The Ophelias wring mystic emotion out of the spaces between their past, present, and future.