“We’re all fire symbols. The power of three will set us free…” United by astrological signs and their empowering attitude, this trio of self-proclaimed ‘bad bitches’ mean business. Dream Wife have been defiantly smashing through the still very male-dominated world of rock and challenging stereotypes to great acclaim.
“Flipping the script and smashing expectations, we’re well up for that mission”, they enthuse. “Getting pigeonholed and not taken seriously because of your sex is so tiresome. We play around with expectations during shows to a crowd that has maybe a sexist idea of what we sound like, then we drop the song FUU. Oh, their faces…” Rakel quips, “they’re not sure if they should run or stay, if they’re entertained or frightened.”
Dream Wife recently released their powerful self-titled debut, and have come a long way since the band’s origins as an art college project; “we learned valuable lessons from uni that have filtered into this band and into writing our debut album; to enjoy making and be present in that process. Not to judge right away, just let creativity happen. Then step away, give it space to breathe then come back into the space and make the changes you want. That’s how we write songs”, Rakel details.
“Flipping the script and smashing expectations, we’re well up for that mission.”
The band have nurtured a strong community around them, establishing their Bad Bitches Club with friend and photographer Meg Lavender. “There’s this line in our song FUU – ‘I spy with my little eye bad bitches’, it’s about supporting and empowering the women in your life – the bad bitches,” Rakel explains. “Meg came on tour with us about a year ago, and did a photo series of people, mainly women, she met at shows. She would ask them what it meant to be a bad bitch and take these empowering portraits. During the set she would rally up the bad bitches, with her unbeatable dance moves, to the front and it became this gang of amazing girls.”
Their song ‘Somebody’ is a pertinent statement and holds a certain precedence at shows: “During our last UK tour we had just released ‘Somebody’, that has the line ‘I am not my body I am somebody’ in the chorus. The song is about smashing gender roles, victim blaming and how society has treated rape and sexual assault cases. During the shows it was incredible seeing the reaction to that song,” Rakel emphasises. “It was amazing seeing all these women come forth and scream the lyrics, and stay at the front for the rest of the set! It was magical!”
Ensuring Dream Wife gigs are safe spaces is vital for them: “Playing more shows that have 14+ or 16+ entry we started noticing a lot of young girls and boys in the crowd and it made us think about what it was like when we were going to our first shows as young teens,” they express, “we realised we didn’t feel that welcome or safe. Especially when it came to rock gigs, we had to deal with some messed up stuff that was just normalised. Nobody should feel that way ever.”
With Dream Wife’s upcoming UK tour they assert, “declaring safe spaces at shows is important to us. Every artist, promoter, venue on this tour should be thinking about how to make the gig environment safe and enjoyable for all.” Whoever you are, you’re welcome at a Dream Wife show – all the more reason to dance to their punk rock bangers this month.
Dream Wife play Exchange on 20th March, with their self-titled debut out now.