In listening to Kelly Duplex’s brand new single, “Hoverround,” don’t be alarmed if you get some flashbacks. While the song may remind you of the jangly pop rock and emo of the ‘90s, you are most certainly in the present, finishing up the year 2020, discovering a relatively new band that tastefully conjures up memories of Weezer, The Gin Blossoms, and The Rentals. “Hoverround” is your first dose of new music from the band’s forthcoming self-titled album that will be delivered to you via Strange Daisy on February 12th (pre-order the limited edition vinyl here).
The album has been a labour of love for the group over the course of the last two years, an emotional set of songs that effectively illustrates their penchant for infectious guitar pop. There’s a lot to discuss on this debut full-length, among other things, an eccentric but somewhat positive outlook on millennial parenthood, the unbearable heat of summertime in New Orleans, a hard to shake habit for list-making, and a variety of opinions towards poet and author Sylvia Plath. As you may have guessed by now, nothing is off-limits.
Providing some context behind the new single, Shane Avrard stated, “‘Hoverround’ is about a pattern of forgetfulness towards our personal needs and passions. For me, that habit is deceptively easy to fall into and justify to myself and now within the context of 2020 feels increasingly more relevant than when I first wrote it. I think feeling numbed by the ever-present mental clutter of rapid-fire incoming information, of distractions and daily to-dos is something that we can all relate to on some level.
My own garden variety millennial anxiety compounded with the 24/7 full-time job of acting as my own pancreas (I’ve been type 1 diabetic since age four) and navigating the incessant calculations and hurdles that brings. Things can quickly begin to daunt and leave me feeling void of time or capacity to give what I know I’m capable of giving to the things that bring fulfillment. In this way I wanted the song to act as a reminder to take time for oneself.
The lyrics in the verses are less inward-facing and more observant of surroundings and happenings, the song was written during an especially humid and violent summer in New Orleans. I hoped the somewhat terse nature of those observations could frame the disparate realities of growing up and then starting my own family in a place so vibrant, rich, and incomparable that can then (almost) annually turn into a pressure cooker.”
Now a band, Kelly Duplex was initially the home recording project for songwriter Shane Avrard. He created it as an outlet to write songs that were a step away from the feedback-heavy, noise rock that he had been composing for several years prior. Avrard eventually decided it was time for some collaborators which brought drummer Dreux LeBourgeois, and bassist Kenny Murphy into the fold, two musicians he intentionally sought out for the project. The three then wrote and recorded their debut EP, Hoverround at Avrard’s house during the muggy New Orleans summer of 2018.
Encouraged by that musical output, LeBourgeois and Murphy became increasingly committed to Avrard’s talents at coming up with pop-slanted melodies. Both honest and emotional, and just scratching the surface of their potential, Kelly Duplex is ready to roll and push the boundaries of their creative niche.