Fake Dad, True Talent – The Duo’s New EP “Yerba Mala” Is Out Now!

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Who knew a tiny Brooklyn flat could house so much creativity? Andrea de Varona (she/her) and Josh Ford (he/him) are the two halves that make up one whole Fake Dad – a music project combining unconventional synth dreamscapes with irresistibly catchy pop hooks and intricately woven layers of indie rock guitars. The duo is avowedly dedicated to crafting music that serves as a valuable source of comfort for their fans. The duo openly shares their own experiences in battling anxiety, depression, and body dysmorphia, intending to help others realize that they are not alone.

Fake Dad’s latest outing is an awesome 5-song EP titled “Yerba Mala”, in which the duo takes a deep dive into the intricacies of interpersonal relationships in a world that’s moving and changing at a breakneck pace. Another central theme to the project is De Varona’s introspection on her connection to her identity as a first-generation Hispanic American. Through her music, De Varona examines the nuances of her cultural background and how it shapes her connections, providing a distinctive perspective on how identity intersects with everything and everyone around her. 


The title of the EP, “Yerba Mala” literally translates to “Bad Weed” in Spanish, a term that holds personal significance for Andrea as it was often used by her mother when talking about the pesky weeds and unwanted plants that needed to be removed for new flowers to thrive. This reference showcases a metaphor for growth and renewal, mirroring the themes present in the music on this record.

“From friends to family to hometowns, these songs explore what it’s like to grow with (or apart from) other people in search of self-betterment. Sometimes relationships change. Sometimes they get stronger, and sometimes they have to be left behind in order for you to heal and grow into the version of you that was always there, waiting to bloom,” confides Andrea.

Through five incredibly diverse tracks, Fake Dad takes us all to school on quality alone. They seem almost unable to stick to one genre or groove at the time, skewing a lot of structure in favor of free-form artistic pragmatism. “Whatever works” to get the message and the vibe across is what they’ll use. The tick-tocky drum machine and Miami’s Spanglish are what it takes to make the leading track “So Dramatic!” memorable. They have zero fear and zero restrictions. Of course, they’re not just throwing stuff at the wall, and across all tracks, you get a very clear sense that while they eschew boundaries, everything is deliberately and masterfully crafted to hook you to their emotional heavy load. A greater example of this is perhaps our next track, “Souvenir Store,” which almost immediately became my favorite of the lot, using a very memorable and widely-beard drum and bass pattern that -while nostalgic- feels entirely fresh and crispy-new. The song aims to capture the complex and often overwhelming nature of fear and anxiety, delving into the inner struggles that can often go unnoticed.

Now if I have to choose a second favorite, it’s got to be the following track, “FASHION GIRL” which is largely a hyper-pop fever dream turned up to eleven, a track that somehow manages to make its very specific message universally relatable. The song takes a raw and honest look at body dysmorphia and the harmful effects of the fashion and entertainment industries. It bravely confronts the unrealistic beauty standards that are often perpetuated by these industries, and how they can contribute to a distorted sense of self-worth and identity. How would I personally relate to all of this? It’s only achievable via the strong layered sound and Andrea’s fervent delivery, and this will become a recurring theme in pretty much all of the songs through the EP, and I double-dare you to say otherwise.

All in all, Yerba Mala does more than uproot unwanted iniquities, it plants firmly into fertile ground with its off-the-wall energy and versatile palette of sounds that should be every bedroom musician’s wet dream, and what’s more, Fake Dad’s commitment to transparency and community is evident in their music, which creates a safe haven for listeners to seek refuge in. With their candidness, Fake Dad hopes to encourage others to seek help and support, and to remind them that they are never alone in their struggles. 

Do not miss out on this!



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