Photo courtesy of Ramonda Hammer
Music has a long history of inter-band relationships. When you spend so much time working and traveling with people who clearly share some common interest, it’s not unusual for love to blossom. What is more rare, however, is for that love to last. Fleetwood Mac, The White Stripes, No Doubt, Smashing Pumpkins, even Sleater-Kinney have all experienced splits between band members at one time or another. The trick is surviving those splits, which is exactly what Ramonda Hammer has done.
The Los Angeles grunge-pop outfit’s frontwoman, Devin Davis, and bassist, Andy Hengl, dated for a period of time. Although they’re now exes, they remain the closest of friends — and bandmates. No matter how much they love each other, though, there’s nothing easy about playing music with a former romantic partner, a struggle Davis addresses on Ramonda Hammer’s new song, “Too Much, Too Recently”.
The track is a melancholy bit of ’90s alternative, with heavy rhythms dragging a dreamy guitar line behind them. With a final yank at the bridge, the guitar aurally breaks free, pushing Davis’ frustrated acceptance skyward as she belts, “So it’s over now/ Well it’s over for now/ And I can’t help wondering how many times before.” Davis explained the meaning of those lines — and the song as a whole — to Consequence of Sound:
“I’m gonna get real real here. This song is about our bassist Andy, who is also my ex-boyfriend, and one of my very best friends (yes, we’ve heard the No Doubt parallel before -_-). Andy and I have been through a lot, but continue to be in a band together and make things work. He puts up with so much of my shit and I love him dearly. We both have been super sad about life and relationships recently, and I wrote this song for both of us, to help make sense of things. The reason the lyrics say, ‘It’s over for now, and I can’t help wondering how many times before,’ is because I’m curious how many times we’ve done this in other realities, and I also wonder how many times we will love/hurt ourselves and each other before we can be content. I’m not sure about past lives or parallel dimensions, I like to entertain many ideas, but I often come to the conclusion that I’m meant to be alone in this life for the greater good of my art. And that’s okay for me for now, so long as I get to experience all the love from friends like Andy who I’m fairly positive I’ve met and loved before, and will again. Lastly, if all of what I’ve just said doesn’t make any sense to anyone, I hope they at least feel something when they listen to the song.”
Take a listen to “Too Much, Too Recently” below.
“Too Much, Too Recently” is off Ramonda Hammer’s forthcoming Destroyers EP. Pre-orders are going on via Bandcamp.