Trio casts a ‘witchy’ vibe on debut cassette, ‘Out of the Blue’
Red Threads originated as a conversation between bandmates Stacie Laparo (bass/vocals), Rachael Catherine Anderson (guitar/vocals) and Ray Gun the Savage (drums/vocals).
“We started out drawing together, and doing laundry together,” Ray Gun said.
“And one laundry day we were talking about how we were all musicians and wanted to try playing music together,” Laparo continued.
The dialogue continues on the trio's cassette debut, Out of the Blue, which it will celebrate with a release show at Cafe Bourbon St. on Thursday, Aug. 16. Songs such as “Spill,” which builds around Laparo's pliant bassline, and the eerie, slow-burning “Mr. Baby,” unfold like musical conversations, with the players frequently trading off the lead role as the others respond and react in the moment. (Anderson's background in improvisational rock 'n' roll is easily discerned in Red Threads' DNA.)
Most of the songs took shape in the band's basement rehearsal space in Linden — a dark, chill-inducing room illuminated by a red light — which emitted an ominous vibe that bleeds over into the music.
“Everything we try to do is, I don't want to say downtrodden, but maybe witchy,” Anderson said. “I know that's very popular these days, but there is something cool about being women and then personifying the monster that is woman, which is the witch.”
This witchy vibe has a way of casting shadows on even seemingly innocuous words and phrases. When the bandmates sing, “All she did was run her mouth” on “Mr. Baby,” for instance, the brooding music has a way of filling in the gaps, making listeners wonder what exactly happened to the woman in the song, while accepting that it probably wasn't good.
“I'd been in a band for five years that was really saccharine and poppy, and that wasn't really my background, although I did start listening to a lot of power pop when I was in it,” said Ray Gun, formerly of the Girls! “Having a project I have more control in, I was looking forward to taking a break from something that was so sweet.”
While the music frequently is born of jamming, lyrical inspiration can come from anywhere, be it the “A Nightmare on Elm Street” universe (“Dream Warriors” takes its name from the third installment in the series) or the digital addictions that have become commonplace within modern society. “Head in the cloud/Walk your day upside down,” the band sings on the cassette's title track.
“I was thinking about people being on their phones and on the internet and some of the disconnect from reality that can happen when you spend too much time in the cloud,” Laparo said.
Moving forward, the band expects these musical conversations to continue to evolve. Ray Gun described the making of this cassette, which the trio recorded in April with Jah Nada of Bloody Show, as Red Threads finding its footing, establishing a strong foundation for future endeavors.
“For me, the first song we wrote after this record, ‘Petty Things,' was kind of the come together moment,” she said. “That was the time where I was like, ‘Oh, this is sustainable. … There's still so much in us.'”