Phoenix indie pop-rock band Diva Bleach just wrapped up a tour of the Southwest, and a few hours before their hometown show on May 12 at The Rebel Lounge, we met up to chat and take some photos. The band is popular, and lots of people know their music. But, if you’re unfamiliar, Diva Bleach is for fans of Microwave, Beach Bunny, Olivia Rodrigo, Cherry Glazer, and The Regrettes. They also draw inspiration from the likes of FIDLAR, Vundabar, Surf Curse, and Wolf Alice.The Band:
Sydney Roten, 22, bass and vocals.
Brie Ritter, 24, guitar and backup vocals.
Sara Windom, 23, guitar and backup vocals.
To learn more, watch, and listen, visit: https://divableach.square.site/
How did Diva Bleach come about?
Syd: Brie hit me up shortly after COVID hit. We all knew each other from taking music lessons together as kids, but it wasn’t till we were in our 20s that Diva Bleach started.
Brie: I got back into playing guitar during the pandemic, and I really wanted to play a certain kind of music with my friends. I knew Syd was the perfect person to reach out to, and we began writing together immediately.
Sara: I joined after the girls recorded our first single “White Noise.” Syd showed me that song one night before I was part of the group, and I already knew it was a hit. When they asked me to join, I jumped at the chance.
Is there a particular theme that generally runs through your songs?
Syd: I tend to write about real scenarios that happen in my life.
Brie: I feel like our songs are either very introspective and emotional or just like a fun little vibe. There is no in between.
Sara: Typically, I think our songs are about heartbreak, loss, and other emotional times in a person’s life. And we might occasionally write a more being-eaten-by-a-shark anthem.
What’s your creative and writing process?
Syd: It depends on the song. We each write on our own. Sometimes we’ll sit in a room and piece a song together, and other times one of us will show up to practice with a nearly completed song that we all can build off of. But, we all contribute to different elements of the songwriting.
Brie: Personally, I get bits and pieces of songs in my head far more often than an entire concept hitting me. I love coming up with riffs and hooks to send to the girls and see how Syd and Sara expand off of them because it’s always so cool and different than what I would have thought to do with it.
Sara: My writing process is all over the place, honestly. Sometimes I’ll write songs entirely on my own and come to the girls with a finished demo, which is how our songs “Beaches,” “The City,” and “Temper, Temper” were created. In contrast, sometimes I’ll spend too much time on a song and find myself lost and in need of collaboration. For our song “Pillowcase,” we all sat down together and each wrote sections piece by piece. It’s much more fun to write with the girls though.
How does inspiration come about for you?
Syd: When I’m going through a difficult time, that’s when I feel most like writing a song.
Brie: I feel like I get my best ideas when I’m listening to music. I get very inspired by specific songs, and I like to mentally ad lib over them until I’m like,”Oh that could be…” It’s totally my own thing.
Sara: I often find myself writing about movies and TV shows if something in particular sticks out to me. Sometimes I’ll just hear a riff in my head, or I’ll come across something while I’m practicing guitar.
Is there something you want your audience to take away after listening to your music or seeing a show?
Syd: When at one of our shows, I just want everyone to forget about their troubles and have a good time. When listening to our music, I hope it can provide some comfort for people who are going through similar situations.
Brie: I just hope they have fun because this band is so much fun to be in. Like, these are literally my best friends, and we just want to play music and have a good time with people.
Sara: When we’re performing, I want the audience to be able to feel our energy in the room. We have played some shows where the audience feels that energy, feeds off it, and then suddenly the whole room is electric. It’s such a powerful feeling being connected like that. Having a good time is key. I think when listening to our music, I want our audience to feel emotionally connected to us. We share a lot of very personal and intimate details within our music that I think resonate with our audience. We’ve covered everything from losing a beloved pet to seeing an ex marry someone else.
What are you looking forward to as a band?
Syd: I just want to keep playing shows and tour every city and country we possibly can.
Brie: Literally endless possibilities. I feel like at this point anything could happen at any moment.
Sara: More, more, more. I’m looking forward to more shows, more releases, more time in the studio, more tours.
Do you have a favorite moment as a band?
Syd: Our Arizona stop on this recent tour with Sundressed was so heart-warming. It was so fun to see people singing along and dancing that night.
Brie: When we played the Hearts On Fire battle of the bands at The Rebel Lounge, that was the first show where people really sang along to our song “Beaches,” and it was such a great set.
Sara: One time during a Vegas weekend run, we played this great show that got out past midnight, and then from midnight to like 3a.m., we walked all around the strip to record a music video for our song “Temper, Temper.” Not to mention, we spent the entire morning driving there! It was a crazy, jam-packed day, but it was a moment that I will cherish for the rest of my life.
What keeps you motivated to continue writing, recording and performing?
Syd: When people tell me they can relate to our songs, the friendships I’ve made through music, and when we get to travel and meet new people.
Brie: Writing is a very therapeutic process, and sharing that with some of my closest friends is such a bonding experience. I’m incredibly grateful for the friendships music has given me, and performing is just like a little celebration of those connections every chance we get.
Sara: I don’t think we could stop writing even if we wanted to. Music is our outlet and how we express our feelings and get things off our chest. As far as performing and recording, our audience is all the motivation we need. As long as there are people out there listening to us and enjoying it, that’s what keeps me motivated.
What’s the best advice you’ve been given as a band?
Sara: Always be nice to sound guys! They will make you sound extra great if they like you (laughs).
What are some of the biggest lessons you’ve learned as a band?
Syd: Drink lots of water!
Brie: Don’t put all of your merch for a 2 week tour in one giant bin.
Sara: Even if I don’t think I need to practice, I need to practice (laughs).