Ruby The RabbitFoot, José Oyola & The Astronauts


Ruby The RabbitFoot

José Oyola & The Astronauts

Ashley Hamel

Wed, May 31, 2017

Doors: 9:00 pm / Show: 9:30 pm


New Haven, CT

This event is 21 and over

Ruby The RabbitFoot
Ruby The RabbitFoot
Not many people can take something as devastating and tumultuous as a breakup and turn it into an album thick with joyous beats, infectious melodies and lyrics that spin disappointment and desolation into revelatory moments, but Ruby The RabbitFoot is not someone who sees things in simple black and white. On her third album, Divorce Party, she creates a vivid world that stretches far beyond just the songs – from videos that straddle the line of performance and art, to her fearless use of fashion, to the music itself, which serves as the thrilling, creative center to her unique universe. Produced by Andy LeMaster (Bright Eyes, Azure Ray), Divorce Party is celebration of life after loss, and the creative renewal that comes from finding light amongst the darkness.

"I want this to be a soundtrack for anyone going through a transition," says Ruby – though this album was written after a particular romantic one, she's not the kind of artist who stays stagnant, anyhow. For this record, she immersed herself deeply into pop music and hip-hop, listening constantly to everything from Beyoncé to Taylor Swift and Fiona Apple. "Having your heart broken is something that humans all experience," she ads. "It's how you learn, and how you grow."

Beginning with "Beach Flowers," the first song she wrote for the LP and which also kicks of the album, Divorce Party is thick with unusual percussion, shimmering synth licks and ethereal orchestration courtesy of a more experimental approach to instrumentals. "I built you up into a castle in my brain," Ruby sings in her crystalline vocals, "and though it's made of sand, I like making plans just the same." For the Georgia-born artist, the idea of a "beach flower" came to represent how some experiences are as lovely as they are ephemeral – but that doesn't make them any less worthy of enjoyment. "A beach flower is something beautiful and temporary," she explains. "You wouldn't plant all your flowers on the beach unless you wanted the ocean to gobble them up."

The process of creating Divorce Party took nearly two years from start to finish – after 2014's New As Dew, she embarked on a artistic journey that took her everywhere from Georgia to California, where she met collaborator Natalie Neal, who became an instrumental partner in expressing her vision. Neal, a renowned avant-garde director and photographer who has screened her work at Sundance Film Festival, made the ideal match for Ruby. Together, they have been developing the visual palate for Divorce Party, including its stunning first video for "Beach Flowers."

Ruby's creative expression knows no bounds and her vibrant personality and unique style have led to a host of exciting collaborations as musicians, apparel brands and various creatives have all sought her out to collaborate. One of Urban Outfitter's "Five To Watch In Athens" and hand-picked by Japanese magazine Nero, for a photo spread, Ruby delights in flirting with the fashion world and is just as creative with her image as she is with her
music. Ruby made her acting debut in 2014 as Macklemore's love interest in the highly popular video for Fences' single "Arrows," featuring Macklemore and Ryan Lewis.

To create Divorce Party, Ruby took the songs down to Athens, Georgia with LeMaster, working with an innovative goal in mind and a new, playful approach to composition. "I wanted more of a pop-sounding record," she says. "I'm a songwriter first and foremost, and I think in the past it's been my nature to pick up the guitar. But in my free time, I love pop music and rap music and R&B. So I had a heavier hand in the style I wanted this time. I learned how to make beats, and learned so much from working with Andy. He has the same love of pop music, and is fearless."

That love is clear in songs like "Faucet Love" and "Ancil," which both manage to be stirring and addictive, melding the stickiness of a pop record with experimentation – via unexpected horns or skittish rhythm - that could only be tackled by someone who knows no real boundaries. And then there are also moments like "Wish," with a slow-burned eighties vibe, that puts on full display the complexities within her vocal range. On "I Hate You" Ruby marries beats and an upbeat melody with some deeply cutting lyrics: "If I ever see your name in lights I think I'll melon ball my eyes out/ Mail them to you overnight with a note that says/"Surprise! Remember when you used to swim for miles and miles in these baby blues?/I wish you would have drowned, cause I hate you/Oh I do."

"That breakup was challenging, but I'm good for it," she says. "I learned so much about love, and I am writing and singing better than I ever have. So I'd like to thank my ex."

"Even though there's this connotation of disruption and heartbreak, divorce parties have a celebratory energy. Every person that we love teaches us, so when it's time to part ways I think it's beautiful to appreciate everything we've gained from the experience. I wrote these songs in a period of separation from a love. I want to release them into the world as a celebration of all that I learned during that time. It's my Divorce Party!"
José Oyola & The Astronauts
José Oyola & The Astronauts
Jose Oyola & the Astronauts is an experimental indie rock project based out of New Haven, CT. Originally a solo songster, Jose Oyola began writing music in a crammed apartment on Chapel Street. As the buzz surrounding his songs grew, seemingly so did his apartment where he was regularly throwing local music events. Over time the little hole in the wall came to be known as Taco Hut Headquarters, and began looking for a larger space.

Now occupying a large 5-bedroom apartment on Orange Street, Taco Hut Headquarters has become a hub for new local CT music and a stable of musicians from that community have teamed up to become the Astronauts. Jose's original songs have flown to new heights with the Astronauts while forging new beginnings for New Haven based music.

Jose Oyola & the Astronauts released their debut album “Give, Give,
Give. Take, Take, Take.” On February 2nd, 2013 in front of a sold out crowd.

CT Indie proclaimed, "Jose Oyola is New Haven's savior."

They have been mentioned in the Hartford/New Haven Advocate,
Celentano Press, Groove Magazine, townofnewhaven.blogspot, CT Indie
and CT.COM.
Ashley Hamel
Singer, songwriter, wizard rocker, fangirl, host, improv comedian, Ashley Hamel wears many hats and knows no fear when it comes to performing. She has played libraries, coffeehouses, fan conferences, venues small and large, with a few international shows to boot.

Her soaring vocals, incredible stage presence, and pop-infused, rock-inspired songwriting lend to Hamel's unforgettable live show. Mixing influences from emo and folk-punk, to pop, to indie rock, Hamel's sound is versatile and dynamic. She pulls you off your feet with pop anthems and can move you to tears as she croons a bittersweet lullaby.

A wizard rocker since 2008, Hamel got her start as a member of Bella and le Strangers. The group disbanded in 2014, and she started performing her original Harry Potter songs solo. Since then, she has gained a cult following with her inter-House love song, “Love Cannot Be Sorted” and the provocative and hilarious, “Hufflepuff Puff Pass”, playing the Brooklyn Yule Ball with Harry and the Potters, Chestertown Harry Potter Festival, MISTI-Con, and more.

Her deeply personal and spirited debut, "By the Window" was released in August 2014 to positive reviews.

A rising star in her local New England circuit, with a devoted following of nerds and art connoisseurs alike, Hamel is poised to take on a heavy recording and touring schedule in 2017.
Venue Information:
254 Crown Street
New Haven, CT, 06511