Nashville’s Idle Bloom set out to make a fun pop album. But the political climate changed their plans.
“It wasn’t intentional necessarily … but it was suddenly like some of the songs on there were more angsty and unsure,” Frontwoman Olivia Scibelli tells BTRtoday about the creative process of their most recent album Flood The Dial.
Released in October, the indie album features catchy and upbeat melodies that shine through as pop. But its ethereal vocals and slow musical breaks create an ominous tone. “We were just looking to write more pop music, [but] as we were progressing it coincided with the election and we all know how that went—that changed everything and how the vibe of the record went.”
The album’s title is taken from a lyric on the intro track, “Wasted Time.” Scibelli loves making up nonsensical idioms, and Flood The Dial emerged from her wordplay. “It’s just about trying to be heard in vain or working really hard to try and get your point across,” she says. “It’s about the feeling of screaming into the void … you just gotta flood the dial on this one [and] keep trying.”
The band name isn’t a Scibelli creation, however. Bassist Katie Banyay plucked it from a now forgotten poem. The band’s formation was followed by the publication of the the erotic novel Idle Bloom, about a woman sexually aroused by doughnuts. “I kinda wish we were named after that now,” Scibelli laughs. “But we’re not.”
They’re lighthearted about the band name, but make no mistake: Idle Bloom are serious musicians who operated a long-standing Nashville DIY venue and are about to open a legit all-ages music city performance space.
“It’s called Drkmttr—it’s been a crazy full time job,” Scibelli says. “I started playing in bands because of Girls Rock camps and stuff like that [and] through DIY culture—going to places like that, that are all ages, accessible, radical hubs and alternative community space, that’s something that’s so deeply ingrained in my heart and mind.”
Fresh off a new album and facing the challenge of opening a new venue, Idle Bloom isn’t lightening their load anytime soon. They’re releasing a seven-inch with a Cocteau Twins cover in February and are working on a new EP for early next year.
“We’re just trying to make ourselves and our friends feel better through music,” Scibelli says.
Hear the entire interview with Idle Blooms frontwoman Olivia Scibelli and Flood The Dial in its entirety on this week’s The Music Meetup.