the treatment of a serious matter with humour or lack of due respect
Levity, The Stroppies’ strongest creative statement to date, is the result of this new approach to creative process. Playful yet focused, but broader in scope and experimentation than previous efforts, Levity continues the band’s exploration of the pop song as both foil for experimentation and conduit for personal reflection.
Whereas the group’s debut LP Whoosh! demonstrated their ability to craft clean, concise jangle pop, Levity takes a different route by utilising a darker pallet of sounds to create its impressionistic whole. Thematically, the band continues their exploration of the personal refracted through the lens of the absurd, though this time around the music feels a few shades darker, a somewhat inevitable consequence of the collective trauma of the past 24 months. The songs still hit with the immediacy that made their debut so engaging, but there’s a creeping cynicism and wistfulness that now permeates The Stroppies’ sound.
While the narrative around the ‘lockdown record’ is increasingly commonplace, there are unavoidable realities involved in making creative decisions under such circumstances that can’t be overlooked, especially for a band that thrives on collaboration. “The restrictions around COVID really informed the way we made the record“, says Angus Lord, the band’s co-founder and guitarist. “There was a lot less opportunity to meet and build ideas collaboratively, which is how we’ve worked in the past. Instead, ideas were developed in isolation, then shared digitally, developing slowly over correspondence and only bearing fruit when we were able to be in a room together. I think this had a big effect on the songwriting and execution.” adds drummer Rory Heane . This process even extended to the studio, where The Stroppies found a kindred spirit in John Lee of Phaedra Studios, who mixed the record in isolation, somehow managing to synthesise the band’s pop sensibilities with their penchant for studio experimentation.
Reflecting on the making of the record, bassist and co-vocalist Claudia Serfaty understands their shift in approach, noting that, “the world feels strange and in turn making pop music feels even stranger. A healthy dose of levity had to be employed in order to find meaning in the process.” In spite of this light hearted attitude, The Stroppies have managed to craft a record of weight and substance. Through Levity they have, at least temporarily, found their feet amongst the chaos.
Release: May 6, 2022, Tough Love Recordings