May 1, 2023
Ripe with fuzz, psychedelia, and haunting rhythms
Of The Roses is an Austin, Texas-based indie art rock/pop band led by singer-songwriters and multi-instrumentalists Serenity Autumn Hernandez Bogert and Josh Delarosa. The band also features Will Lord on bass and Alexander "Wilhelm Scream" on drums. These guys are making serious waves on the music scene in Austin and should be put on your list of bands to devote some listening time to.
Prior to the band formation, Hernandez Bogert and Delarosa led other music projects that saw them in the studio with Austin superstar Jackie Venson and performing as an Official SXSW Showcasing Artist opening for Priests and D.C.-based label sister Polygon Records in 2019.
Paths soon collided and Hernandez Bogert and Delarosa met in 2020 and began writing songs together, where they enlisted the help of Lord and Wilhelm Scream to record and perform live, thus rounding out their unique sound. The band released their debut EP "Mirror's Always Round" in 2022, which is a soundscape of textures and melody. Ripe with fuzz, psychedelia, and haunting rhythms, the band's engaging sound is defined by Hernandez Bogert's soaring vocals, Delarosa's intricate guitar playing, and the tight rhythm section of Lord and Wilhelm Scream. Vibrant and diverse, this band continues to evolve and grow with their mix of indie rock, art rock, and pop.
My favorite tracks from the “Mirror’s Always Round” EP are “Falling Through” and “Friends”, but the entire album is solid. “Falling Through” is a powerful and emotional song about the feeling of being lost and alone. The song’s lyrics are raw and honest, and the vocals echo with shadow and beauty. The music has a driving beat and atmospheric guitars with the song building to a powerful climax, leaving the listener feeling both exhilarated and powerful. “Falling Through” is a song sure to resonate with anyone who has ever felt lost and alone, and I highly recommend it to anyone who is looking for an intelligent listen.
“Friends” is a catchy, danceable track with a dark, twisted edge. The song’s lyrics explore the themes of control and paranoia, and the music reflects this with its distorted guitars. The song starts with a slow, atmospheric intro that builds tension. The drums and guitars wade their way in, and the song picks up pace. The vocals are clear and powerful, and the lyrics are delivered with conviction. The song’s chorus is catchy and memorable, and the bridge is a nice change of pace. “Friends” ends with a powerful outro that leaves you wanting more. It’s a well-crafted and enjoyable song worthy of getting stuck in your head. The band also has made a video for “Friends” that is available to watch on YouTube. It is visually stunning and full of emotionally resonant exploration. You can check it out below.
The other tracks are “Gone”, which has a cool and funky vibe; “I Hope You Love Me More”, which has a 60’s psychedelic tone to it; and “Fear”, which starts out with crunching guitars and leads to a pleasant cornucopia of sound.
With Hernandez Bogert and Delarosa being the primary songwriters, the band's lyrics are often personal and introspective, but they also deal with broader themes of love, loss, and identity. Of The Roses is a band that is not afraid to be vulnerable, and their music reflects that.
The band has been praised for their live shows, which are known for their energy and enthusiasm, and they are currently working on releasing their next single, which is expected in the summer of 2023. In addition to this, they also have recorded a Christmas song that is certain to pique your interest. More details about that are in the interview, though.
Of The Roses is definitely a band to watch, and their music is sure to continue to resonate with fans of indie rock and art rock. They’ll impress you with their music, energy, and their infectious live shows.
Because they are one of my new favorite bands, I just had to speak with them to learn more about what makes them tick, and I was able to connect with Serenity Autumn and Josh. Both are witty, intelligent, and just downright fun. I feel that within the next five years Of The Roses will become a household name, so be sure to check out their music, then go download their latest EP.
MaM: Thank you for taking the time to speak with me today. I am so impressed with your music. I feel like the biggest fan girl, so I made several notes that I would like to share with you before we kick this off. Your sound is hypnotizing and catchy with an incredible guitar tone and I feel your vocals complement each other amazingly. Also, too, I totally dig your lyrics. Who is the primary songwriter in the band?
JD: Whoever is singing on the track usually is the person that wrote the song. With “Falling Through”, we both kind of sing and we wrote that song together. Usually, the music comes together first and the lyrics second. We collaborate in that regard, but Serenity writes a good bit of the lyrics and if I write them, then I bring them right back to Serenity to see if they are grammatically correct and make sense.
SA: Right. Well, I study journalism, and I’m an editor, too, so that’s why he brings it to me.
MaM: What inspires your lyrics? Everyday life, or do you see something and think it would make a great inspiration for a song lyric?
SA: Everyday life. It’s a lot of different things. Josh has some good stories in terms of the song “Fear”, actually.
JD: For me, songs just come to me, and it’ll be like if I’m driving a long trip or if I’m falling asleep or if I’m in bed, I’ll just hear it in my head and will get up to record it. “Fear” came to me when I was taking a hot shower one day. I just had this melody in my head and I thought, “This sounds cool,” so it’s sort of like the music just comes to me. Along with the music, you kind of hear a few lyrics in there, but sometimes the lyrics don’t make sense. It’s just words that go along with that melody, so you must sit down and actually write. The funny thing is that when I write, I don’t intend it being autobiographical, but sometimes it just comes out that way. It just subtly happens.
SA: Yeah, you’re tapping into something that you don’t realize you’re tapping into.
MaM: They do say that life experiences make the best inspiration.
JD: Absolutely. There is a lot going on in the world, of course, and I think it makes for inspiring music in terms of painting a picture with the music. I think it’s having a conversation, too.
SA: Some of our songs are love and romance based. I also write from a politically conscious perspective, I guess, kind of like Talking Heads. I like interesting characters. The song “Friends” is like a character to me. I also have Type I Diabetes, too, and I’ve been through a lot with that. That’s probably its own interview, though.
MaM: I was reading about that and actually have a question about it because I read that the band kind of formed around your last hospital stay in 2016.
SA: Sort of. I may have written it that way. Kinda. (laughs)
MaM: Would you mind elaborating on that? How did the band initially form?
SA: Sure. Personally, that’s just how I came into making music in general—because of my hospital stay—but me and Josh met playing in a cabaret band, so it was really that meeting that pushed us together to start writing music.
MaM: Well, you two complement each other. You couldn’t have picked a better band mate or songwriting partner. Really, the dynamic you two have is incredible, especially with the latest EP. Don’t change a thing. So, are you both living in Austin now? I saw that your band is based there.
SA: Yeah, we live, work, and play in Austin.
MaM: So, one thing I like to ask artists and musicians is what they are currently listening to that is helping to inspire them to create. What is on your playlist?
SA: Because I am a music journalist as well and work at a record store, I kind of have to listen to everything all the time and I really like that.
MaM: Well, that’s a good thing. Best job ever!
SA: I am in complete bliss, most of the time, but I have been listening to a lot of Lana Del Ray. I have been listening to a ton of her music recently. My favorite artist, though, is St. Vincent.
MaM: What about you Josh?
JD: Lately, there have been a few bands. Since I’ve never gone through an 80’s phase, I’ve been listening to a lot of electronic 80’s stuff.
MaM: Nice. Some of my fave music.
JD: Yeah, some of the bands are ones that Serenity turned me onto. Elvis Costello and Franz Ferdinand are a couple. Serenity really was the one to get me into Franz Ferdinand and I think they are just brilliant. Someone else that I have gotten into recently, too, is Taylor Swift. (laughs)
SA: Wait, what? (laughs)
MaM: I feel like an arrow has been put right through my heart.
JD: Listen, give me a chance. (laughs)
MaM: Serenity seems just as shocked.
JD: Let me say it’s the melodies, for me. I would never buy a record, but I can appreciate the music and the songwriting, and for me—
MaM: Ok, I’ll let you slide with that. (laughs)
JD: Thank you. (laughs) I won’t go spend over $1,000 on nosebleed tickets or anything, but I will say that, for me, it’s just something that is selling and that people like, but the biggest thing for me, as a songwriter, [are] the melodies and the poppy tone that reels me in. I like good pop songs. Like a three-minute song that is very catchy is great to me.
MaM: I guess you could say you admire her songwriting capabilities and her ability to bring it all together, which I can dig. So, that leads me to your band name. How did you come up with the name?
JD: No, you can go. (laughs)
SA: Josh doesn’t like to tell, so I guess I will. (laughs) I would like to say it was not Josh’s idea because it does seem narcissistic at first, but—
JD: Yeah, it was not my idea, but Serenity, tell how it came about.
SA: So, Josh’s last name is Delarosa, which in Spanish translates to “of the rose.”
MaM: Ah, I see what you did there.
SA: Yeah, we had a brief romantic relationship, but our closeness has lasted longer than the relationship, and we’re still really close, but it was my idea because I thought it sounded pretty.
MaM: Well, it fits! It’s a bad-ass name.
SA: Thank you.
MaM: Another question for Josh: I’ve read that you’ve had some of your music featured on local and national radio. Can you tell us a little more about that?
JD: Yes, I’ve been blessed to have had experience in bands that had music on college radio and just radio in general. Yeah, it’s sort of … (laughs) … yeah, I’ve been on the radio … I don’t even know what to say …
MaM: Well, you’ve been in some other bands, so tell us a little more about that.
JD: Well, they were sort of in the same vein. This is my first band that I’ve actually had a hand in. I’ve been in other bands where I was a songwriter, but I was always on the side. I didn’t want to be in the front. This is our first where it is OUR band. In the past, I’ve always been in the same wheelhouse, if you will.
MaM: So, you guys released your latest EP in 2022, but are y’all currently recording or writing new material? I know Serenity mentioned releasing a new single. What’s in the queue?
SA: So, I am getting ready to graduate college, so everything is moving at a glacial pace. (laughs) We have a song ready to go, but we just need to start the process of getting it posted. I can send you a copy so you can include it in the article. We also have a Christmas song we recorded that I think you would really like, but that’s not coming out until Christmas. It’s a goth version of the of the song “Snow Miser” from The Year Without a Santa Claus.
MaM: That’s awesome!!
SA: It’s one of my favorite Christmas songs, so I told Josh, “Do the Smiths thing you do so well” and then we put a Johnny Marr-sounding guitar riff on it and a dance floor beat, and it’s hilarious in my opinion, but it’s also really sad when you listen to the lyrics in that context. (laughs)
MaM: I can’t wait to check it out. I bet it’s epic. I have one last question for you guys. What are the future aspirations for the band? Do you want to make a career out of this or just do this as a side thing?
SA: Well, I know that personally, I want me and Josh … well, we have explicitly spoken about doing this full time. That is the goal. Doing this as a job would be the best thing to happen to us. We look forward to it.
To experience all that is Of The Roses, head on over to all of their pages, put in some headphones, and enjoy!
Nicole Brice is obsessed with discovering new music. Want her to check out your band? E-mail her at email@example.com.