In March 2019, in the depths of enduring the worst heartache of her life, MisterWives frontwoman Mandy Lee took a trip out to California’s Antelope Valley to see the superbloom: a phenomenal blossoming of wildflowers way out in the desert, sprung from the enormous rainfall that drenched the region that winter. “My grandmother and my mother used to collect poppies and dry out the flowers when they lived in Spain, so my sisters and I all went there in their honor,” Lee recalls. “At the time I was in a place of barely being able to get out of bed, and as I was standing in the fields with those flowers I just started to cry. I felt pretty lost and hopeless, but seeing all these flowers that aren’t supposed to even grow made me feel like there could be some kind of light and happiness on the other side of the pain.”
An intensely personal reflection on growth in unexpected places, MisterWives’ new album Superbloom marks a moment of major transformation for Lee and her bandmates: Etienne Bowler (drums), William Hehir (bass), Marc Campbell (guitar), Jesse Blum (keys, trumpet, accordion), and Mike Murphy (saxophone). The New York City-bred band’s third full-length and first album for Fueled by Ramen, the 19-track epic finds MisterWives greatly expanding their already-adventurous sound, introducing new textures and colors to their magnetic form of indie-pop.
That joy ultimately infuses all of Superbloom, instilling even the most anguished songs with an irrepressible radiance and warmth. And in sharing personal struggle with so much honesty and open-heartedness, MisterWives hope to spark a similar courage in each listener. “There’s a lot of ugly truth in some of these songs, but I hope it shows people that you can get through the worst of the worst and make something beautiful out of it,” says Lee. “No matter what terrible things are thrown at us in life, there’s always the chance to grow in ways that you never expected, and come out stronger than you were before. So don’t ever give up hope.”