Oh, Rose
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Oh, Rose

Olympia, Washington, United States | Established. Jan 01, 2014

Olympia, Washington, United States
Established on Jan, 2014
Band Rock Dark Wave




"Oh, Rose - Seven (Self-Released) 2015"

Oh, Rose is one of those bands that you find out about by pure chance and it’s instant love at first listen. They are from the iconic music city, Olympia and as a new band they are conquering bit by bit the hearts of those who listen to their music. In 2014 they released their debut EP, That Do Now See, and now they self-released their debut album. It’s called Seven and it’s composed with seven songs. It’s simply an astonishing record, every song has a certain intensity to it and all lyrics are passionate. Musically, they go further on mixing folk-rock with a much more fuzzy rock. Olivia Rose’s voice is what gives the depth to the songs, singing her heart out, especially on the track “Seven”, which is by far the heaviest song on the record. It just hits you hard when she sings with such power the lines “It’s just a lot of standing up / Hey I’ve been down before”. Seven is simply a gem in nowadays music.

Words by Andreia Alves - Music & Riots

"Oh, Rose - Olympia, WA"

Oh, Rose. (a) The name of the hottest Freakyghostfolkpopdarkness quartet from Olympia, WA? (b) The sigh you tend to make after you've listened to "SEVEN", the stunning debut album from said band? (c) Both of the above?

I wrote about the immensely talented and charismatic Olivia Rose last year after being literally gob-smacked - the phrase I used was "wow… WTF!?!" by the tour-de-force that was the EP "1919" (not to mention the subsequent discovery of the back-catalogue), so when Olivia announced that the band were recording their debut album, I made a note in my diary (in reality a combination of 'like' on a popular social medja site and 'following' via Bandcamp…)

"SEVEN", comprises - yes - seven songs that are a little bit indie, a little bit folk, a little eerie, definitely - and mesmerisingly - haunting and most certainly memorable, and which opens with a reprise of "1919" in the shape of "Lottery" and "Run".

Hmmm, slackers - you're thinking - only seven tracks and two of those have been previous released…

Not so fast…

Listen to the version of "Lottery" released last year - punky, full of distorted, reverbed fuzzy guitars, a solid drum and bass backbeat that embedded in the skull… and then there was Olivia's distinctive and tremoloed vocals… And now listen to the version on the album - kids, this is what you do when you invest in some serious studio time, even the count-in has taken elocution lessons - here the song has been crafted into a guitar-fuelled slice of contemporary indie wondrous. I'm still pogoing and bouncing around the room, but there is so much added texture (which I suspect is thanks to the introduction of Sarah Redden's synths and harmonious backing). There's a glint in Olivia's eyes as she sings "…If i won the lottery, I'd buy you a sports car, With no brakes ,drive it as fast as you can, forever…" This song is a nailed-on indie gem and up there with anything from Alvvays' stunning debut (which as you'll note, is high praise…)

And the new version of "Run" is not so much re-recorded as re-imagined. It's still melancholic and bitter-sweet and - oh my gosh - those trembled vocals still send shivers down my spine. But here the addition of languid synths and the steady beat of snare drums not only add depth but give the song a dream-like quality. And then there's Olivia's voice - plaintive, pleading - just plain gorgeous. "Run" is such an underrated classic it's not true.

But what of the new(er) songs? "Running" hits you with a wall of fuzzy, reverbed guitar and surging bass as Olivia revisits punky, guitar-fuelled alternative-rock with a bit of a vengeance. The machine-gunned chorus duels for supremacy with the chugging guitar riff, before - and here things start to get even more interesting - the song fades out and straight into "Sevɘn". Is there such a genre as indie-electro-folk? (I'm thinking along the lines of Globelamp's haunting psychedelic-folk.) Building upon a single note, Olivia's siren-like voice holds you spellbound until it breaks into a primeval wail, the bass line grows in intensity before all hell breaks loose with such an animalistic ferocity that it's almost a relief fades out so tat you can pause and take stock.

If the first half of the album is indie-alt rock inspired, the second half is most definitely more thoughtful and intricate most musically and lyrically - tying together and reinforcing the threads of the band's previous releases. Both "Only" and "Winter" clock in at a tad over five minutes - proof that the band can create far more than three minute songs. The former oozes melancholia, all the while Olivia's voice just holds you in the palms of her hands. If you can allow yourself to drift away from the vocals, try and focus in on the hypnotic backbeat of the drums and bass. Careful though, there's the Bjork-Like cacophony of shrieks and wails that brings the song tumbling down towards the close with a jolt. "Winter" opens to layers of discordant drums and crashing symbols - an image of a bleak winter's day - before another totally hypnotic beak and incredibly warming, soothing vocals wash over the listener. In many respects (i.e. my opinion) this is the standout track on an album - that's lets be honest - is a bit of a gem. Here Olivia displays a dramatic flair as the song turns on the last verse. No spoilers here, but as the tempo is raised and her voice starts to break, you can easily imagine that hell will have no fury compared to that of a lover discarded… This frankly is an absolutely inspired piece of musical theatre.

"Flu" may be an unlikely ode to the positive benefits of the flu, but the song ensures this all to brief album closes as it began, with another sublime vocal performance. I've said it before, but Olivia Rose has a voice that I would walk barefoot across hot coals / crawl over broken glass (* delete as applicable) or at least fight may way down to Pasadena next month…

With Liam Hindahl again responsible for the exemplary stick-work through the album and together with bassist Kevin Christopher engineered the album, the recruitment of Sarah Redden adds warmth and texture on keyboards. And then there is the mystical lyricism and outer worldly vocals of Olivia Rose. In short, "SEVEN" is an absolutely stunning album and one you owe it to yourself to listen to…

Oh, Rose
"SEVEN" (Bandcamp) - Reclaiming the Colonies

"Oh, Rose - Seven - Album Review"


While we loved Oh, Rose‘s EP That Do Now See, and included double A-side 1919 on our Favourite Free Music of 2014 list, we never got a chance to properly explain why we are such big fans. The band, from Olympia, WA, are an indie rock/lo-fi outfit led by Olivia Rose, whose voice carries the tracks beyond the genre norms into peculiar territories. Raw and versatile, her vocals range from whelps and wails to quiet, haunted whispers. The band have just released their début full length SEVEN, a record on which, if anything, Rose pushes things even further.

After a quick count-in ‘Lottery’ dives headlong into things, Rose detailing her plans for winning a lot of money, backed with just frantic enough instrumentation. The track sets out the vibe on the album, an indie rock energy laced with something sinister, as if something dark is using Rose’s lyrics to communicate its message. “If I won the lottery…” she sings, following it up with a variety of strange scenarios: “I’d buy you a house with no doors and no windows”, ” I’d buy you a sports car with no brakes”, and, perhaps tellingly, “I’d buy back the things that I sold to the devil”. This last statement forms a desperate refrain which sets up the noisy finale, where the guitars pick up and percussion gathers intensity and several voices shout at once “Cause I’m a poor poor sport, playin’ games with love”.

‘Run’ is slow and sultry, showing off Rose’s trademark warbled vocals, sometimes deceptively slow and dreamy (with added oooohs) and sometimes energetic and spiky, like a combination of Angel Olsen, Mitski and Lemolo. The halfway mark sees the track burst into life, with the instrumentation clattering into some kind of tempo as Rose’s vocals become manic and unpredictable. And if ‘Run’ was a command then ‘Running’ is the action, lean and wiry guitars lead proceedings while a lo-fi buzz envelopes everything, Rose’s words cutting through like shards of glass. The vocals have the quality of an exorcism, like the unnatural utterings of a twelve year old as some jaded man of faith flicks holy water at her forehead. Here Rose sounds quite literally possessed, as if channelling something old and malevolent and playful in a mean, spiteful way. “Put your faith in your eyes,” it urges. “Keep running” it demands.

The title track has a slower build which acts as the quiet before the storm, the hush that descends over a room after something traumatic has occurred, the lull when those present are waiting to see if it will return. And return it does, the track lurching into a rhythmic frenzy, culminating in a demonic wail at the halfway mark, a moment unexpected in its ferocity even after previous songs. It’s as if the entity is no longer speaking via her mouth but climbing right through it. “My need to please”, it howls, “my need”, and you can just imagine the audience scattering as something hideous emerges on the stage. The track finishes with the heavy rumble of reverb like the electric vibration of recent violence in the air, slowly dissipating into the restrained ‘Only’, which opens with a quiet synth line that sounds like disembodied breath across the top of glass bottles. The shuffling drums and forlorn lyrics have a lonely feel, as if originating from the bottom of the ocean, Rose’s words slinking and sliding like pale invertebrates against the cetacean squeaks of the background vocals. ‘Winter’ continues the introspective quiet, the underwater scene growing darker until nothing can be seen, as if all energy was consumed and the entity burnt out during the earlier disturbance. It is only around the four minute mark where a crescendo is reached again, life flooding back into the depleted channels, and ‘Flu’ ends with the intensity gathering once more, itself building up to a climax of repeated bird-like shrieks, as if the thing is rising from its hibernation or emerging from its cocoon, freshly metamorphosed with a pair of dazzling wings.

Rose’s vocals alternate between dreamy oohs and idiosyncratic warbles, guttural growls and unnatural wails. Yelps and yells and cries and squeals… I’m not sure I can think of another singer who has such a diversity of delivery styles. Its quite incredible to hear and I can only imagine how her vocal chords must feel after a show. Probably barely any better than if some ghostly creature did clamber out of her throat. - Wake The Deaf

"Cassette Review: Oh, Rose "SEVEN""

At its core the music of Oh, Rose can be best described as fuzz psych rock. It has influences ranging from No Joy to Jefferson Airplane and I initially thought of it as being a mix of The Go-Go's and The Cranberries. Granted, the first song has elements of The Cranberries in the vocals but the singer does find her own sound as the cassette goes on. With cymbal crashes and hooks this is just a lot of upbeat and energetic fun. That is... Until... It's not.

By the end of the first side of this cassette you might be left wondering what just happened, perhaps even feeling a little bit violated. The music has this darkness to it and on the third song there is a trippy sort of feel as if Janis Joplin is singing that Blondie song about getting back on the chain gang, but the fourth just builds to this screaming I cannot describe. Everybody has their own ideas of screaming. Kurt Cobain screamed in his own way. Metalcore bands can growl in what people can compare with Cookie Monster. Other bands can have higher pitched screams, longer screams and just a variety of results when you really listen to a lot of music (From Thrice to Silent Drive to mewithoutYou, all different)

I wouldn't really say that Oh, Rose is "hardcore" or "metal" or even some kind of combination where hardcore music is infused with indie rock or garage or something of that sort. The only reason why this screaming- the likes of which I have never heard before- works so well on the final song on Side A is that it is the culmination of just such a fantastic song. To give you an idea of how well this works- and how much I cannot describe the screams- if the screaming was to take place during one of the previous songs in the chorus it just wouldn't work. It couldn't be "screamo" or whatever Recover was because it would just feel out of place.

For all of that- which just left me breathless after listening to only Side A and I'm still not over it- there is this psychedelic vibe to Side B that has images floating around in my head of Jim Morrison wandering around the desert naked. It's not that it sounds particularly like The Doors as much as the fact that it sounds like something that would be playing during such a movie sequence. It's very strange and just has this feel of Cowboy Junkies mixed with the tempo of Live and I just can't describe it well with words-- it's not something you listen to though, it's something you experience. - Raised By Gypsies


Seven LP  (2015)
1919/Run Double-A side (2015)
That Do Now See EP (2014)
A Date at The Guest House (2014)



Comprised of Olivia Rose on guitar and lead vocals, Sarah Redden on synth, Kevin Christopher on Bass, and Liam Hindahl on drums.  The sounds they create along with Olivia’s mystical lyricism and outer worldly vocals carry the tracks beyond the genre norms and into new peculiarly magnetic territories. 

Band Members