Cyclical Out September 8th via Flower Girl Records
Photo Credit: Sydney Schaefer
Philadelphia indie pop band Small Circle are now streaming their new single “Mornings” via Stereogum. Small Circle, which features Cameron Boucher, Adam and Charlie Singer of Sorority Noise, as well as first time frontwoman Marissa D’Elia, are releasing their debut full length Cyclical on September 8th via Flower Girl Records. Pre-orders for the album are available now physically and digitally via Flower Girl Records. The band’s first single “Spinning” can also be heard via The Fader.
Small Circle features dual vocals from D’Elia and Cam Boucher, and takes influence from dreamy bands like Alvvays or Beach House and mix it with the hand-to-pen lyrical style that defines the emo world Sorority Noise lives within. ‘Cyclical’ is confident yet full of the endearing charm that comes from an artist’s first release.
Small Circle is playing a week of shows in September with Remo Drive and McCafferty on the east coast. A full list of dates can be found below.
Tour Dates (w/ Remo Drive and McCafferty)
09/05 – Philadelphia, PA – Philamoca
09/06 – Asbury Park, NJ – Asbury Park Brewery
09/07 – Brooklyn, NY – Knitting Factory
09/08 – Kingston, NY – BSP
09/09 – Boston, MA – Sonia’s
1. We Belong Here
2. Vague Consensus
5. Point Breeze
9. Cooler Mood
10. About You
Both as artists and people, Small Circle is a band built on self-discovery. When Sorority Noise singer/guitarist Cam Boucher recruited Marissa D’Elia for a new project in early 2016, he’d never even heard her sing. But he knew she had important things to say.
Soon the pair—along with fellow Sorority Noise members Adam Ackerman (guitar) and Charlie Singer (drums)—had formed Small Circle, who were quickly dubbed a “supergroup” by AV Club and released their debut EP, Melatonin, in April 2016 on Boucher’s Flower Girl Records. Her bandmates were veterans of the game, but for D’Elia, who counts Small Circle as her first band ever, stepping into the role of songwriter and frontwoman was the ultimate learning experience.
“I definitely struggled with finding my voice,” D’Elia explains of the process. “I have friends who have made some of my favorite music ever, and a lot of times I’d turn to Cam and say, ‘My favorite songs already exist’ or ‘This song I want to write already exists.’ He always told me to reach for more. A big thing was getting over perfection.”
This juxtaposition of the band members’ respective musical histories is what givesSmall Circle’s debut album, Cyclical, its defining sound. The album, due out September 8 via Flower Girl and Triple Crown Records, is confident yet full of endearing charm—sturdy musicianship buoyed by D’Elia’s hand-to-pen, unapologetically honest lyricism.
It’s also an album that doesn’t shy away from imperfection but rather embraces it as an intrinsic part of life. Throughout its 10 songs, Cyclical is an ebbing arc of growing pains and triumphs, sadness and happiness, stories of inter- and intrapersonal relationships through the lens of mental illness. Even when songs like “Vague Consensus” and “Ritual” are upbeat and brimming with shimmering instrumentation, they’re undercut with an aching melancholy.
“‘Ritual’ feels like the unassuming thesis on this album,” D’Elia explains, “because it speaks a lot to my disassociation with trauma and feeling like my body or surface-level personality is so detached from my mind. It really has become a ritual to push away and be my best protector. I’ve become very mindful of the love and empathy I give, but I am just now starting to practice giving that to myself.”
As such, Cyclical is an album that, though immediately appealing, is richly nuanced and offers something new with every listen. And its themes are universal: Whether you’re pushing for the confidence to step up to the microphone for the first time or to embrace life’s hardships, a burning desire for self-betterment will guide the way.
“This album is me trying to decide what’s important to me, what’s been sitting on my heart and how I want to use my voice,” D’Elia says. “Cam said I have important things to say, and every time I’m writing, I go back to that.”