On “Dreamers,” the dance-laden lullaby and lead single from Savoir Adore’s new album Our Nature, Paul Hammer and Deidre Muro invite listeners into a magical dream world. Such worlds are nothing new to the fantasy pop duo, who inadvertently became a fixture of Brooklyn’s indie scene as the result of a dare. In 2007, as disheartened solo artists, they whimsically retreated out of the city to a rural studio with two rules: “48 hours. No acoustic guitars.” They returned with The Adventures of Mr. Pumpernickel and The Girl with Animals in Her Throat (Cantora), a concept-driven EP set in a fairy tale land that narrates the tragedy of Gloria and her unrequited love. On 2009’s full length In The Wooded Forest (Cantora), they expounded on the EP’s mythical landscape. But where Savoir Adore’s previous releases have surveyed these worlds at a distance, Our Nature zooms in, putting our inner landscapes and relationships at the core of every track. In that vein, the recordings themselves are intentionally more crisp, aurally expansive and intriguing.
Our Nature itself is both a collection of catchy indie pop songs and a dramatic narrative. “Dreamers” functions as its prologue; on it, Muro insists her subject not worry and “keep on sleeping,” while Hammer confronts the inevitable transience of dreaming: “Where we are isn’t just a place where everything remains.” And so Our Nature thrusts into its tenuous drama: the unlikely love story of Girl and Monster (“Loveliest Creature”). At times as fantastical as its premise (“Regalia,” “Sea of Gold”), at others as accessible as radio pop (“Sparrow,” “Anywhere You Go”), the album seamlessly blends ‘60s invasion, ‘80s new wave and ‘90s alternative with a more contemporary, digital creative process. Others have recognized Savoir Adore’s sound as “musically and lyrically brave” (NME) and “irresistibly melodic indie pop” (Nylon). In 2009 and 2010, The L Magazine and The New York Post both named the band to their top bands to watch lists. So now, look no further. After two years of finding inspiration in a wide range of experiences, from neuroscience lectures to tales as old as time, Savoir Adore is back with Our Nature.
Muro and Hammer were both born into musical households. Muro’s father is an electronic music writer and performer, her mother an organist, and her brother a composer. Muro herself learned to play the piano and violin and trained as a jazz vocalist while also in her mother’s church choir. When she arrived at NYU, she joined a songwriter’s club, which is where she met Hammer, who grew up with famed keyboardist and composer Jan Hammer (Mahavishnu Orchestra) as his father. While Savoir Adore often keeps their music playful, it is also serious work akin to keeping up the family business. Nowhere is this reverence more resonant than on ITWF’s “Wonderlake” and its complimentary number on Our Nature, “Sea of Gold.” On both tracks, Hammer and Muro ask big questions about family history and identity: How did I get here? Who am I now?
As an ambivalent reaction to their years spent in the Greenwich Village songwriter scene, 2007’s eccentric and unexpected The Adventures of Mr. Pumpernickel and the Girl with Animals in Her Throat was the beginning of the duo’s creative response to these questions about musical identity. After their two-day dare was complete, they posted some tracks to a MySpace page under the hastily forged moniker Savoir Adore, a French phrase that grammatically fails to merge “knowing” and “love.” The name stuck and the project gained momentum. Cantora Records released the EP as the band began to work on a full length. With the release of 2009’s In The Wooded Forest, the New York music press embraced Savoir Adore and set them on a path to expand their audience nationally and internationally. Band members Tim McCoy (drums), Gary Atturio (bass) and Alex Foote (guitar), who took part in Our Nature’s recording process, rounded out the band’s live show as Savoir Adore shared the stage with MGMT, Los Campesinos, Oh Land, and Toro Y Moi.
In the summer of 2010, the band toured the UK and France, including shows at Koko/Club NME and The Secret Garden Party. Their songs have been featured in various commercials (Almay, Citi, Yoplait), TV shows (Pretty Little Liars, Drop Dead Diva, Huge) and video games (Kinect Adventurer). During the 2012 Academy Awards, Tide premiered its new Tide Pods campaign featuring Savoir Adore’s cover of Men Without Hats’ “Pop Goes the World” (available on iTunes).
In late 2011, Savoir Adore offered a sneak peak of Our Nature, releasing “Dreamers” as a 7” on Neon Gold Records. The band spent much of 2012 on the road, both headlining and sharing the stage with such artists as Stars, Jukebox The Ghost, Ra Ra Riot, Oh Land and Lights. They also played multiple showcases at music festivals like SXSW and CMJ. Along the way, Savoir Adore continued to catch the attention of tastemaker blogs, influential radio stations and lifestyle press including KCRW, WFUV, Billboard, MTV and The New York Times. They self-released Our Nature in the fall, and landed on NPR’s “10 Artists You Should Have Known In 2012” list. Shortly thereafter, Savoir Adore caught the attention of Nettwerk Records, who signed the band to a label deal in early 2013. Nettwerk re-released Our Nature, including one new and previously unreleased song, in June 2013.