Image: Darren Andrews via Sonic PR

Driving for Authenticity in the Music Industry: An Interview with The Lovely Eggs’ Holly Ross

Born and bred in Lancaster, Holly Ross and her husband, David Blackwell, have broken countless barriers in the music industry, making leaps and bounds in defining their sound, and attracting fans from across the country. Their lo-fi psychedelic punk rock act, otherwise known as The Lovely Eggs, encapsulates their true authenticity and entire band essence of owning all of their music, label, and agency. In a recent interview with the band’s lead singer, Holly Ross, she spoke about their newly released album Eggsistentialism and what it means to truly do as you please, expressing individuality and one’s own life experiences through the art form of music.

Having been entirely recorded at home in Lancaster and later produced with David Fridmann in upstate New York, Eggsistentialism is a “hopeful record of survival” and an honest “snapshot in time about the survival period” during Ross and Blackwell’s fight to save the non-profit recording studio and rehearsal facility, Music Co-Op, which Fridmann worked at as a sound engineer and the home of all their records. The Lovely Eggs are no stranger to tackling the challenges that are thrown their way, building a studio at their home in Lancaster during COVID, and recording tracks late at night while their children slept. “It’s part of our ethos,” Holly says with pride and conviction, “to do it despite condition…so rather than just say, oh, we haven’t got a studio anymore, it’s more of a case of okay, let’s build one.” The twelve months in writing Eggsistentialism were far from a smooth, simple sail for the band, however, once again in the true nature of Ross, “it has turned out all right, and we are out on the other side of it…you get through it, stuff is thrown out, yet you do survive.” Their new album beautifully reflects this journey for no other album could have expressed that message of perseverance and determination to keep going.

We’ve kind of got the best of both worlds at the moment of working with a producer who basically allows us to explore what we want to artistically

– Holly Ross, The Lovely Eggs

Writing and recording their own records at home in Lancaster is one of the many ways that The Lovely Eggs embrace their individuality and honesty as artists, despite the challenges thrown their way. Their incredible success without management or a record label is beyond inspiring and this independence has vastly benefited the band as artists. “You have no limitations whatsoever,” reflects Ross, “especially no commercial limitations, which is, as an artist, I guess amazing because someone can be breathing down your neck about writing a commercially successful record, and that just doesn’t enter our equation when we write so it can be very liberating and very freeing.”

It is not always this easy, however, as writing and producing art as an independent band is often a lot of work and can sometimes be lonely without external parties to share ideas with. For their last three albums, The Lovely Eggs have worked with David Fridmann, an experience which they have tremendously enjoyed. “We’ve kind of got the best of both worlds at the moment of working with a producer who basically allows us to explore what we want to artistically, but then at the same time we don’t have a record label who is putting pressure on us to sound a certain way or deliver any sort of commercial product,” states Ross.

Songs mean to people what they take out of it

– Ross

The lyrics and melody that filter through Eggsistentialism, and its sound, were enormously influenced by Holly and David’s personal experiences, as is all their music. “I think no one else could write the music that we do, because nobody else is in our world,” speculates Ross, “I would say good art and good music are always very distinctive and people have their own style because they’re able to take all of what makes their world and their life and reflect it in their art… I can only reflect on what’s inside of me.” In a discussion about the meaning behind their records, Ross holds a strong minded opinion in that not all music has to have meaning or a message, for “any throwaway pop song could have no meaning behind it and still be a great song…and it’s important for us to not go too much into what’s not visible because that can often hamper people’s enjoyment of the record, because songs mean to people what they take out of it.” However, for The Lovely Eggs, their meaning and lives pour out of their music. In Eggsistentialism, the track ‘My Mood Wave’ holds everything Ross and Blackwell aim to express as an “internal thought monologue” of navigating everyday life and every challenge that they have faced each and every day as musicians and as people.

Just as The Lovely Eggs’ lyrics and sound reflect everything it means to be an individual in the music industry, Ross discussed their work with illustrator Casey Raymond who created the vibrant, eccentric, “mind-boggling” artwork that has now become the face of the band’s albums. Ross reminisced on giving Raymond full artistic freedom, allowing him to bring present themes in the album in an aesthetic way on the cover: “all the monsters and all the weird stuff, it’s just Casey’s brain, we just kind of left him to it…and we had no criticism when it came through it’s that brilliant.” Raymond’s artwork is one of the most striking and unique pieces that album covers across the industry have experienced. It is no surprise that a band as unapologetic as The Lovely Eggs would choose him to portray their ethos through his art.

We’re going down on a canoe and what will be will be, so who knows?

– Ross

Now on tour, The Lovely Eggs have an exciting number of shows lined up across the country in which there will always be a “party atmosphere, so expect the unexpected.” They have spent months “under lock and key” writing and producing the album, and are thrilled to finally share it with the world. The Lovely Eggs are very much keen to enjoy and express themselves without thinking about the future too much; Ross believes that the band must “surrender ourselves to destiny because you just never know what might happen…we don’t know what will happen on tour, but it will and it’ll be fun, and that’s what matters as long as everyone’s having a good time.”

In a final greater analogy for life, Ross astutely describes her “river of fate”: “We’re going down on a canoe and what will be will be, so who knows? We don’t like to plan what is going to be next, we don’t know and that’s kind of the way we like it.”

Eggsistentialism is a truly eccentric blend of punk rock, psychedelic, authenticity and originality, brought by two artists who are unapologetically making their mark and journey in the music industry, without fear of what is to come. Having overcome so many challenges as a truly independent band, Ross and Blackwell hold great promise and are sure to take the punk rock scene by storm.

Listen to Eggsistentialism on Spotify here:


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