Lipstick Jodi’s More Like Me is this raw experience explored and expressed in their national debut album on Quite Scientific. The three-piece outfit from Grand Rapids, Michigan’s layered and complex synth-pop sound is highlighted by the vocals of lead singer Karli Morehouse, which are alternately haunting, triumphant, sorrowful, and make you want to dance around your bedroom punching the air, singing at the top of your lungs.
More Like Me thumbs through a journal of self-improvement, self-doubt, self-preservation, and self-celebration with each track an entry on its pages. Some written in a steady hand and some scrawled angrily on the page—music from the deepest valleys, celebrating small victories, right after a big fight, or driving fast yelling out the window on the treacherous road to trying to do better.
“I was in a huge writer’s block and finally started making demos and writing on my own again a couple of years ago. It made me realize that the line up I currently had was not working for me.
The joy was gone, I wasn’t inspired by my surroundings, but I could sense a new beginning. Enter Connor and Andy October 2018; two musicians that I had scouted through the Michigan music community. I had played a set with Connor a couple years back and remembered his style, positive energy, and amazing talent. I had met Andy years before and played with the band he was in at the time.
I found the same drive and big creative energy that I had in him, and we started exchanging demos immediately. I had been asked to play in Detroit with Justine Courtney Pierre that November so we put together a killer set in the matter of (maybe) weeks.
Following that set, we continued to write together for the next year and went from having a small EP, to having a full length kick ass album, to getting signed in 2020. It’s really the album I’ve been wanting and needing to write, and I couldn’t be happier with how it came together and turned out.”
The accumulation of such stories and experiences presents an album that isn’t afraid to show how hard getting better and doing better can be, but celebrates the struggle, heartache, and trauma—embracing it rather than wallowing in it.
The power and poetry of More Like Me will resonate with anyone who has looked around them and realized the need for a new path and a new way of doing things. The seemingly impossible task of living a new life when the old one keeps pulling you back and the new one still views you through the lens of what you used to be.
How did you originally get into music?
My grandpa was in a national touring polka band with his brothers for years, so it came pretty naturally. He played upright bass, piano, and steel guitar. My mom and him had gotten me a baby piano when I was really young that I toyed around with for a while, and I guess I started becoming interested in learning guitar when I was around 8 years old. My mom tipped him off and he bought me a really nice kid’s classical guitar and now here we are.
Is there a specific aspect of your music that you love more than others?
I think it depends on the song. If I have a solid vocal melody in place, most of my favorite parts of the song come from any fun backing vocals or counterpart synth/guitar melodies to compliment it. You can definitely find a ton of those all through More Like Me.
What is your creative process like?
Since I started seriously writing at 14, I’ve always found a way to make a quick demo in order to get a song at least 70% written. I think I even started with Audacity and a terrible USB mic, haha. Nowadays, opening a blank Ableton session and starting with a basic drum sequence or catchy synth/guitar riff is where it starts. I try not to build on an idea with any expectations, so it ranges from only having a chorus to having the song just about finished.
Andy and I have really gotten in a great writing rhythm sending sessions back and forth or getting together on weekends just to write. He is even able to bring unfinished songs to the table for me to finish, which has been amazing for me considering I had not really had the option to come from that angle in the past.
What inspires your lyrics?
I tend to bottle things and carry a lot of anxiety, so a lot of lyrics are my day to day surfacing into the song. They’re mostly inspired by heavy feelings of sadness, anger, hurt, guilt, etc. I try to make them as vague and general as possible so anyone can take my words and make them their own.
What are your plans post the release of More Like Me?
Fingers crossed, we hope we are able to have a record release and tour.
Who are your all time musical icons?
Oh man, here’s a list to name just a few: St. Vincent, Tegan and Sara, Prince, Hayley Williams, and Robyn.
Who do you look up to when it comes to fashion and style?
Ooo, this is a good one. I love a good gender neutral blend of aesthetics subtly with a flash of glam. It’s fun realizing you’re non-binary when you see yourself in people like Troye Sivan, Tegan and Sara, Karen O, and Matty Healy all at the same time.