Before I fell in love with Olivia’s World’s music, my heart was stolen by the illustration on their cassette tape. There was nothing extravagantly technical or sophisticated about the drawing, with its freely drawn black lines and ordinary subject matter; a sunflower t-shirt, a penguin, a void facial expression. Yet every detail added to its quirkiness. After listening to the album, the bouncy and fun cover art was the best explanation I could imagine of the band and their music. Formed after Rose Melberg was introduced to Lica Rezende through a random drunken conversation, Olivia’s World may not be an overly serious or philosophically-minded project, but they are surely a band full of excitement with wonderfully weird subjects like cereal box and blotter.
Their first EP, Olivia’s World, is a perfect representation of their sweet and punchy music. Bouncy drum sounds and speech-like melodies are perfectly weighed down by a full-bodied bass sound, which adds richness to the tracks. It reminds me of the ‘80s rock band, A-ha, whose music never fails to get me dancing.
On top of all that, the melodic bass and perfect vocal harmonies of Lica and Rose make Olivia’s World extra sugary. My personal favourite from the EP is “SuperValu.” Although the lyrics are simple and repetitive — “I don’t know why it’s hard to try / I don’t know why / I don’t know how to follow”— I can empathize. It’s exactly how I feel whenever I am exhausted from trying to do my best to satisfy myself and others’ expectations. The continuous, steady, bass and tambourine sounds create a perfect balance with the lyrics about being lost.
Olivia’s World is an album that feels right nearly every moment of the day, touching on heavy and emotional themes, without ever getting too melancholy. With every listen, it brings me a little closer to Olivia’s colourful and bouncy world.