Photos by Anna Rae
Video by Tony Sahadeo
a LOVE LOVE story...
We love love, and we love murder. At least, writing about it. Chris asked Jefferson to come over and help her finish a murder-ballad she was working on, and… LOVE LOVE was the result, a rock band with dual male-female lead vocals, psych-country-soul overtones, and a penchant for poignant, often macabre lyrics.
Chris Toppin and Jefferson Riordan started writing together in the summer of 2013. They’d know each other for years but had only worked together as hired guns in other peoples’ bands. When they started working together directly, writing murder ballads and love songs, sparks flew: they finished each other’s musical sentences; their voices blended perfectly. It was magic.
Their debut album, LOVE LOVE, was released in May of 2015 and received critical praise. “This eponymous album ranks among the most auspicious debuts I’ve heard so far this year…a lush, complex sound,” writes Jeff Burger/No Depression. “[This] album is so rich in its delivery that you cannot help but fall in love with it on your first listen and then throw the day completely out of the window as you go through each track several times…discussing with anyone that will listen about the finer aspects of the story-telling and narrative structure that would put many novels to shame,” says Ian D. Hall/Liverpool Sound & Vision.
LOVE LOVE’s second album, Picture, was released this year, May 2018, and was mostly recorded at Q-Division Studios, in Somerville, MA. It has received glowing feedback from both fans and critics alike, and the band has been touring in support of the album. A video for one of the songs, Rhode Island, is forthcoming.
Though the band’s makeup has shifted somewhat over the years, at the heart of LOVE LOVE is Riordan’s & Toppin’s voices & writing. “Both have serious writing chops,” writes Jed Gottlieb of the Boston Herald, “but it’s when they tag team vocals that [they] shine brightest.” LOVE LOVE has also become known for their fun and unpredictable shows. Writes Jen Trynin, “LOVE LOVE creates beautiful music with swing and swagger and their show is full of humor and danger, all big plusses in my book!”
When not performing in support of Picture, LOVE LOVE has been hard at work in studios like Zippah Recording & BKitty, working on new material. The alt/indie ethos that has always guided Riordan’s & Toppin’s aesthetic is more mature these days, but it is still there, producing better results than ever.