“I am usually clinging to urgency, but this time around we focused on being intentional”
BY SOPHIE GRIFFITHS, IMAGE BY DANIEL DORSA
Following the wonderful glimpse into the world of Adult Mom that 2017’s Soft Spots brought us, Driver is their brand new offering – a third album which dives even deeper.
Years in the making in terms of both production and emotion, it’s an album that explores beyond the coming-of-age story we know and love. What happens next when you come face to face with the real world? How do you learn to live and love as find yourself and put yourself back together?
With Driver, Adult Mom has pinned down the feelings of all twenty-something’s through an expansive sound and attention to the moments that can make or break us. It’s the queer rom-com soundtrack they’ve been dreaming of since 2015 and you can feel it flooding you with that notion from start to finish.
We caught up with lead-singer Stevie Knipe to find out more about Driver and what Adult Mom is all about.
DIVA: Hey Stevie! Tell us about your new album, Driver. What should listeners expect?
Stevie: Expect a cleaner sound that builds on what we have been growing, and a bit of eclecticness! I think that there are some departures sonically, that still have the foundation of being an Adult Mom song.
What story does the album tell?
In a way it’s a very simple one. Someone who goes through a dramatic transition and regression and pulls themselves out.
What themes / topics does it explore?
Control, agency, power but power in terms of empowerment. After destabilising moments, I think that these topics become extremely important to you as you heal. At least they were for me! It is partially a coming of age, because of how much I learned how to survive on my own.
What genre would you say it falls into?
Hm, I’d say indie pop? Indie rock? Those types of things.
What’s the album title about? How about your band name too?
The album title is a reference to the literal identity of being a Driver – someone who drives a car. But it is more about agency and control, being in the driver’s seat, being the one to make the decisions and take the risks. Our band name started as a joke between friends, and just stuck.
It’s your third album – what sets this one apart from the others?
I think that with this record, we understood how valuable taking our time making it was. I am usually clinging to urgency, but this time around we focused on being intentional.
Was there a person / situation that inspired you to write this album?
Yes, there was a breakup which followed the quitting of a job and a move back home with my parents. The album is what follows.
Do you have a favourite song on the album?
Yes! My favourite is Frost. It was the last one I wrote for the record and captured a moment of triumph, while still being humbled.
Are there any boundaries in place when you write your music?
Not necessarily. When I’m writing the initial demo or song I don’t try to have any boundaries or limitations. The editing round is a different story though!
What have you learned over the past year?
The thing that I’ve taken from the past year is to be mindful and present, and appreciate what you have when you have it.
Your press release said you want to “soundtrack the queer rom-com they’ve been dreaming of since 2015” – what song is playing in the end credits?
I think with this album I’d hope that something by Taylor Swift would be playing, because I love her. Maybe her amazing track Happiness.
Who are you queer music icons?
Kate Pierson! Billie Holiday! Janelle Monáe!
Is there a good queer scene where you’re from?
Yes! Growing up in the suburbs of NYC there was always a good amount of queer bands around me once I started playing music.
What makes you feel visible as a queer person?
Definitely when I kiss my girlfriend in public, which I have been deprived of, because it is not CDC compliant.
Where do you look for inspiration?
I look for inspiration from my own life, but also from books and movies. I just finished reading The Seven Husbands Of Evelyn Hugo, and I really want to write a song about a closeted romance.
Driver, the new album from Adult Mom is out now
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