By Nicholas Coyne
Rising rock band Dream Wife shared with TIDAL how they came together and how they crafted their sound.
Can you take us through how the group was formed?
Dream Wife began while we were all studying art at The University of Brighton. Due to a series of chance encounters, Rakel and Bella were living together and out dancing one night when the idea of a band surfaced. Alice and Bella were making art collaboratively already, and also Alice was the best guitarist and best friend around, and so there was never any question as to who would complete this triad. The band began life as an art project of sorts; germinating within the university walls, playing our first show in the gallery, before busting out and taking the songs on the road. We thought Dream Wife was going to be a flash in the pan, but we just found something so good, we couldn’t put it down.
How did the group settle and come to terms with what their sound would be?
On the road! It’s been a really organic, natural process settling into the sound present on the album. Before we ever released any recordings, we played so many shows, really developing and writing on the road. We’d often write a song and then play it live the next day, seeing how the crowd responds and using that interaction in shaping the songs. The first time we played “Somebody” was at a festival and people were singing along even though they had obviously never heard it before. We try hold onto magic like that. At the start, it was just the 3 of us with a sampled drum beat, but when we started working with live drums on the EP things really shifted and came to life. For the album, we were able to write with drums for the first time, and dynamically, it’s so exciting to work with a drummer (Alex Paveley), you can take tracks to all kinds of places.
Were there any notable influences on your fever-ish, driven music?
David Bowie and Madonna are the obvious go-to’s, but over the last year we have had the absolute honor of playing with some of our true musical heroes; Sleigh Bells (our label mates at Lucky Number!), The Kills (was also the first show Alice and Bella saw together at about 17) and The Cribs (possibly one of the first bands Alice learned on the guitar age around 11). It’s kind of unbelievable to get this kind of kudos from the bands you love.
What is music’s main function to you, as both a fan and an artist?
That’s the thing, music can be so many things at different times. Maybe, the most exciting function of music for us is its capacity to bring people together; to unite people in a common goal, whether that’s to move your body and have a good time or to call in to question structures in our society, music can cause people to feel things collectively.
Is there anything outside of music/art you can point to as an influence on the music you create (a color, an object, an emotion, a sensory experience, etc.)?
The world through the eyes of three women in their 20’s.
What is the feeling you hope remains with listeners after they listen to you?