Miami rock fans are no doubt familiar with Huma Rojo. Comprised of vocalist-bassist Damaris Vicke, guitarist Javier Guell, and keyboardist Daniella Bertoldi, the bilingual art rock band has been rumbling around the local scene since 2006 (though Bertoldi actually joined in '08), delighting fans with its penchant for cinematically psychedelic tunes.
In fact, the name Huma Rojo even came from a character in a Pedro Almodóvar film. But Vicke and co. have recently entered a period of change and growth, firstly, renaming the band, which has since become Oh Dear!
And if the slated January release of its debut EP A Clouded Room of Happiness is any indication, that transformation has been a positive one. "It was hard to pronounce for some people," says Vicke of the old moniker. "It was more personal, younger, didn't really have a direction ... I think the sound was in a limbo."
Another big change came in the form of personnel: Oh Dear! features a pair of new faces in the production, one of which -- guitarist/basist Marcos Rodriguez -- you'll see permanently in the lineup. The other is Nico Saavedra, a friend and drummer from L.A., who Vicke, Guell, and Bertoldi invited to come play with them. Over the course of a week, the band rehearsed tirelessly and recorded the tracks.
"It was very intense," Vicke says. "Three days in a row of nonstop six-hour rehearsals getting ready to record, missing school, work, anything related to our daily lives. But it was totally worth it."
And the end result is one she and the band are pleased with. "We are extremely happy and satisfied with the results. We really hope everyone feels the same way about our concept and work when they hear it."
From the energetic, danceable single, "Oh Dear! Oh Dear!," to "Mind Dictator," a folk-rock freak-out that delves into the games we play with our brains, to "Marginal Land," a jazzy bit of psychedelic noise that deals with deep disappointment, A Clouded Room of Happiness promises to be everything fans loved about Huma Rojo, only with a more complete sound and a more mature approach.
Check out this video for a cool medley of new music from the recording:
Keep Miami New Times Free... Since we started Miami New Times, it has been defined as the free, independent voice of Miami, and we would like to keep it that way. Offering our readers free access to incisive coverage of local news, food and culture. Producing stories on everything from political scandals to the hottest new bands, with gutsy reporting, stylish writing, and staffers who've won everything from the Society of Professional Journalists' Sigma Delta Chi feature-writing award to the Casey Medal for Meritorious Journalism. But with local journalism's existence under siege and advertising revenue setbacks having a larger impact, it is important now more than ever for us to rally support behind funding our local journalism. You can help by participating in our "I Support" membership program, allowing us to keep covering Miami with no paywalls.