Indie-pop duo Roses & Revolutions has just released “Lower Than Low,” the new single from their forthcoming ‘Midnight Monsters’ EP, out October 15th via Nettwerk Records. Featuring gorgeous, stacked harmonies that envelop the listener with an expansive and heartbreaking quality, the song beautifully captures the utter stillness found in the day’s earliest hours. “’Lower than Low’ is about thinking you’re at your lowest and realizing there’s actually a level below that,” the band explains. “While the lyrics might be dark we wanted the melody and production to hint at some glimmers of hope.” The video for the track was created by director and animator Nikita Biswas.
The songs on ‘Midnight Monsters’ were written in the middle of the night, in the strange hours before dawn when the world seems to stand still. There’s a quality of magical realism in each of the six tracks, where synth and analog sounds mix to create something otherworldly. But the album could only have been written during this past year, as the world experienced a collective warping of time and place. Inspired by the dystopian quality of quarantine and the emotional demons that hit hardest at night, the band created a sweeping album that blurs fantasy and reality with a sense of timelessness and escape that unfolds like a short film noir.
“Lower Than Low” follows the release of the EP’s closing track, “I Remember Dancing,” a subdued, indie-folk song laced with grace and vulnerability, about a kind of reminiscing that’s become all too familiar this year. “I remember playing it,” says vocalist Alyssa Coco. “And as we were figuring out chords, I actually started tearing up.”
Called “spellbinding” by Atwood and “musical alchemists” by American Songwriter, Roses & Revolutions is comprised of longtime collaborators Alyssa Coco (vocals) and Matt Merritt (guitar). Based in Rochester, NY, they first connected through music, playing in various bands together until it became apparent that there was a special creative alchemy between the two. They gained traction with their hit single “The Pines,” leading to 11 million+ streams, a headlining tour, and syncs from Netflix, ABC, NBC, and more. But when lockdown threatened to deflate the momentum they had built, the duo took the opportunity to explore a new way of making music, turning their dark experience into a thing of beauty.
“There’s a little town near us, and at night it was completely deserted, so we would go for a walk,” recalls Matt. “At the time, it was winter, and we would come home to our bedroom studio and just write and record.” Alyssa adds, “As the sun goes down, I get down, and it’s always been like that for me. But that also happens to be the time that Matt and I are most creative. So, we were capturing those midnight monsters and getting them into song.”
Characterized by a sweeping nostalgia that oscillates between impassioned bursts of rock and soft, acoustic storytelling, Roses & Revolutions invites us into a world of alternating realities over the course of six spellbinding songs, an eerie landscape that feels at once like a vast desert landscape and an intimate space among friends. Kicking off with “Feeling Like Myself,” which deals with the emotional fallout of not being able to experience the success of their last EP, the album also includes songs like “Coffee,” an upbeat track with the electropop artist Lostboycrow, that still manages to maintain a sense of intimacy and simplicity. There’s a thread of drama and storytelling throughout the EP, with tracks like “Lower Than Low” capturing the utter stillness found in the day’s earliest hours, and “The End Of The World” speaking to the abandoned nature of places that used to be so full of life.
But after the night comes the morning sun, and while Roses & Revolutions explore darker territory with skill and nuance, they also radiate strength and hope. It’s a delicate dance between the dark and the light, but on ‘Midnight Monsters,’ Roses & Revolutions have mastered it.
Roses & Revolutions have just announced a string of tour dates in March 2022, opening for the acclaimed, gold-selling singer/songwriter Joshua Radin. Stay tuned for additional updates.