Oracle Sisters Release New EP Ahead of Highly Anticipated Debut Album

Oracle Sisters Release New EP Ahead of Highly Anticipated Debut Album

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Oracle Sisters Release New EP Ahead of Highly Anticipated Debut Album

In an exclusive chat with V Magazine, we sit down with the latest alt pop sensation, Oracle Sisters to discuss their musical latest EP, Paris II.

In an exclusive chat with V Magazine, we sit down with the latest alt pop sensation, Oracle Sisters to discuss their musical latest EP, Paris II.

Photography: Celia Marie Peters

Photography: Philippe Bartherotte

Photography: GKero

Text: Sam Tracy

It’s a Monday afternoon in New York — evening, for the Paris-based musical trio known as Oracle Sisters comprised of Lewis Lazar, Christopher Willatt, and Julia Johansen. Dialing in from two different locales (an empty beach in Southwest France for Willatt and a cottage with ample space for mid-interview collage art for Lazar), V sits down virtually with two-thirds of the emerging indie band and self-professed “creators of artistic dream rock” to chat their musical come-up and a new EP Paris II, released this week, that comes as the answer to the appropriately titled, Paris I, released in July at the height of the pandemic. Acting as a sequel to the ongoing storytelling of Willatt and Lazar, Paris II imagines the second of “two alternate visions for Paris in the future while acknowledging that we're at a crossroads in terms of humanity,” best put by Lazar himself.

A complex history of nomadic artistry precedes the formation of Oracle Sisters and their two acclaimed EPs. Backtrack to Belgium circa, well, over a decade ago. Bandmates Willatt and Lazar were then classmates, growing up together in Brussels and playing in what Willatt describes as “parallel bands”. 

“We were always in different bands, we didn't know each other that well. Then at the end of school, we started a band together and toured around Belgium a little bit when we were about 18,” Willatt recounts. “We realized that we had this great connection writing songs, you know? We'd always come away with something when we sat in a room together. But then life led us apart, did it not?”

With a smile, Lazar agrees before Willatt dives into an international tale of travel, creativity, and interweaving life journeys that took the vagabond pair (albeit, separately) to lands as far and wide as India, Scotland, and New York City. Willatt planted roots in Edinburgh, working as a songwriter and running underground cabarets in the Scottish capital, while Lazar found himself in the Big Apple where he delved into a hands-on musical education by self-producing an album, collaborating with Nikolai Fraiture from The Strokes, and performing in the band, Summer Moon.

“We'd meet up every couple of years and every time we’d meet up, we'd make some music together until four years ago,” says Willatt. “We ended up in Italy together in this haunted old mansion there — an old villa where Lewis was doing an artist residency and I was working in the kitchen. We arranged to be there at the same time. He was fed up with New York, I suppose, and wanting to change scenes a bit while I was ready to leave Scotland.”

By serendipitous happenstance, Willatt and Lazar met a Parisian who offered them a job hosting and playing music in a cabaret, presenting the pair the perfect excuse for their next move to the City of Light. With a new gig lined up in a new city, all things were looking upward until the cabaret suddenly shuttered its doors just one week after their arrival. In a turn of events, the duo filled their days “feverishly writing songs” until one day they stumbled into model and musician, Julia Johansen at a book signing. She was looking to make her foray into music and was the perfect sonic addition to the band, lending her drumming expertise to the band’s carefully cultivated sound. Thus, Oracle Sisters was born.

“If you told me this story for the first time, I wouldn’t believe you,” laughs Lazar.

The seemingly inconceivable is a recurring theme for the 3-piece band as evidenced by the 5-song tracklist of their freshly released EP. In contrast to their previous EP, Paris II presents the B-side of a seeming utopia; unhappy aspects of a dystopian lockdown reality are laid bare. This time around, Oracle Sisters’ characteristic chill beats and reflective soundscapes harmonize not only with odes of love as highlighted on “La Ferme Song” but also with stories of unrequited romantic devotion as evidenced by track, “If I Was Yours”. Relying on pure instrumental talent and harmonic understanding, Paris II shies away from overproduction and artificial digitalized instrumentation in a tuneful breath of fresh air.

Keeping in tune with their moniker of prophetic prediction, Oracle Sisters created a full-length newspaper from 100 years in the future to be packaged with each vinyl sold. 

“We decided to write a newspaper as if you had just picked it up in the year 2020. It’s a 30-page newspaper with articles, interviews with artists, business information from the future, stories of theft, murders, protests but from the future,” explains Lazar. “It’d be crazy if it’s all true one hundred years from now. You won't have to pick up a newspaper on that day if it’s all true. Our name ‘Oracle Sisters’ will be legit.”

With one listen, you’ll probably fall in love with the melodic mastery apparent in each finely crafted track. Now with two acclaimed EPs under their belt and an album on the way, you’re going to want to watch this space. This is only the beginning for the trio and you don’t need a crystal ball to see that the Oracle Sisters are on track for success. 

Check out their latest release, Paris II, out now.

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