Album Review – Dream Wife: So When You Gonna…

Dream Wife – So When You Gonna…

Wasting no time on a gradual build, Dream Wife’s latest Album So When You Gonna storms straight into opening track Sports!, and there’s little let up from thereon in. There’s a hint of earlier singles Hey Heartbreaker and FUU but with a slicker production and overall sound, courtesy of producer and mixer Marta Salogni (Björk, FKA Twigs), engineer Grace Banks (David Wrench, Marika Hackman) and mastering engineer Heba Kadry (Princess Nokia, Beach House). ‘It was amazing to work with this community of womxn on this album who are supporting each other in an industry that is so male-dominated. It was a way of us practicing what we preach. It felt like an honour to be able to deliver this baby with these three amazing midwives,’ says guitarist Alice Go. ‘What would you call the opposite of gate-keeping? Facilitator? Enabler? It’s all about opening the gates,’ adds bassist Bella Podpadec.

The punk ethic confronting societal issues head on is absolutely still apparent and now sits neatly alongside poppier tunes on which it’s hard not to contemplate the influence of vocalist Rakel Mjöll’s Icelandic compatriots The Sugar Cubes, notably on the trio of U Do U, RHRN and Old Flame. However, don’t settle too far into your seat because these are followed by the explosive collision that is the title track (video below). A stand out for me is Homesick, three minutes of Viv Albertine meets Karen O whilst spinning on the Waltzers. If this were a gig, the finale of After the Rain would be a fitting close to the evening, its minimal keynotes providing the perfect backdrop to emphasise the piercing vocal; the message ‘It’s my choice, my life… it’s my body, my right’ evocative of Dream Wife’s continuing message that gender should be no barrier to who you are and what you do. Speaking of barriers, this is an album that will have the one at the front of the stage bouncing when we reach a point where live music can be enjoyed again. Currently the three-piece are set to tour across the UK then around Europe in April and May 2021 – keep your fingers and toes crossed.

So When You Gonna… is out on 3rd July via Lucky Number Music – you can pre-order here or, from Friday, maybe pop to your newly re-opened local record shop to pick up a copy if you’re lucky enough to have one nearby. Watch the video for Sports! below.

Review by Siobhan
Band photo © Sarah Piantadosi

30th June 2020