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Stella Rose shares debut single ‘Muddled Man’

US newcomer Stella Rose on her love of Nick Cave and her own musical beginnings

By Nick Reilly

Stella Rose (Picture: Alex Hall)

Upcoming US star Stella Rose has shared debut single ‘Muddled Man’, which leans heavily into dark and intense industrial rock.

Rose has signed to producer Yves Rothman’s KRO Records and released the track on the label, with her debut effort also produced and co-written by Rothman.

Speaking to Rolling Stone UK, she explained how the likes of PJ Harvey and Nick Cave have proved to be formative influences on her sound.

“They’re my big icons and writers I love listening to. I grew up listening to a lot of them,” she said.

“With Muddled Man, I was also listening to a lot of Grinderman songs and PJ Harvey’s ‘Meet Ze Monsta’ was a massive influence too. There was Jenny Beth’s ‘I’m A Man’ too, my producer Yves Rothman showed it to me and we wanted to bring that kind of daunting, aggressive, almost cult leader vibe to it.”

The aggressive quality comes across in the track’s imposing sonics, which hit the listener from first listen.

Opening up on her writing process, she added: “I like to put different words together that don’t make sense to anyone else, but somehow flow to me. I just saw the Bowie documentary Moonage Daydream. He talks about how he’d have these words cut up and put them in a hat, before taking out random ones and placing them together. I definitely pull from that world of writing, I don’t want to be super direct. I know where I’m coming from, but I don’t want the meaning to be clean cut. It allows you to access this imaginary world.”

As for her own musical beginnings, Rose described how she’s received subtle guidance from her famous father – Depeche Mode’s Dave Gahan.

“When everything stayed still during Covid, I started playing guitar and writing songs and I got really serious about it,” she said.

“I realised that this is what I wanted to commit to, because everything felt so life and death at that point. I woke up everyday and wrote music, it allowed me to see and I talked to my parents and told them it was what I wanted to do seriously.

“My dad and I are really close and I appreciated it wasn’t forced. My dad has been super instrumental in this process, but also keeping five feet distance to let me grow in my own way. I feel lucky I have him and his team, his manager, who can scare off the people who might do the classic stuff to the new artist. That’s something I feel really lucky for. My dad and I have similar tastes too, which always helps to discover new stuff”.

Stella Rose’s ‘Muddled Man’ is out now.