Meet My Most Recent Musical Obsession, Indigo De Souza

She’s literally just the raddest being to exist.

*I just had to include a small gallery because I love the band too much to not.

North Carolina native Indigo De Souza has been making waves recently in the indie music scene, especially ever since her latest album release, Any Shape You Take. Attracting listeners of Lucy Dacus and Phoebe Bridgers, the 24-year old artist brings a whole new level and meaning to the indie-rock genre.

De Souza spent the first 16 years of her life living just outside of Asheville in the small, right-leaning town of Spruce Pine, North Carolina. This tiny, conservative town led her to feel alienated from her peers, for she was one of the few non-white students at her school. She also noted in an interview with The Line of Best Fit that she felt her entire family, which was composed of De Souza, “a Brazilian bossa nova guitarist” father, and “an eccentric but passionate creative artist” mother, did not blend in well with the other occupants of Spruce Pine. Growing up shy, she disclosed in the same interview that “‘[she] would probably be in a very different position if [she] didn’t have music to give [her] some sort of tool to connect with people through.'” Hearing her music after knowing her backstory adds another layer of meaning to the lyrics. For example, the isolation that De Souza felt while living in Spruce Pine is reflected in her 2018 track “Take Off Ur Pants” in which she asks, “When am I gonna go back to school like everybody else does, everybody else does? When am I gonna start being cool like everybody else is, everybody else is?”

Indigo De Souza, the band, at a hometown gig (via Charlie Boss)

De Souza’s grandfather, who was diagnosed with dementia and required daily care, ended up moving in with the three of them, rifling up tension within the family. About one year later, her mother decided it would be best if De Souza moved in with her sister in Asheville so that she could not only be free of the stress that comes along with living with someone suffering from dementia, but she could also have more opportunities to publicly play music and become apart of the musician community.

Since relocating to Asheville, De Souza has found her home. When asked if she ever envisioned herself moving to bigger cities, such as New York or L.A., she is quick to say ‘no,’ for she has found her place within the music community around her new hometown.

 

Speaking with Conor Lochrie in the same The Line of Best Fit interview, De Souza revealed:

[Asheville is] a really beautiful music community though with so many talented people … After the pandemic, I moved out to the woods and now I have such a giant community here. I love the landscape, the river, the trees. It’s a really good climate here too, even in summertime it’s not super heavy. I love it here.”

— Indigo De Souza

Flash forward to today, De Souza has a formal band that has been gaining attention and exposure exponentially over the past three years (and rightfully so). In the span of a month, her band has announced three tours (yes, three!!), including a domestic spring tour, an international spring tour, and a domestic summer tour. They obviously have a busy year ahead of them, and I am so excited to see where they go from here!

As mentioned previously, De Souza’s mother was an artist, and she had such an important role in the creation of Indigo De Souza, the band. Had it not been for her, De Souza would have likely never developed musically as much as has; she was the one who encouraged De Souza to find an outlet for her anxiety and shyness with the guitar, and she was also the one who knew that her daughter would enjoy life more if she left Spruce Pine. What many people do not know, though, is that De Souza’s mother was also the artist for both of the band’s albums, which share similar motifs of semi-fleshed skeleton-esque figures and vibrant color palettes. At least during the time of an interview with FLOOD Magazine in August of 2021, De Souza admitted that she has the original paintings from her mother hanging on the walls of her once-church-now-turned-house living space, so it only makes sense that De Souza dedicated the band’s debut album to her mother, titling it I Love My Mom.

From left to right: Any Shape You Take and I Love My Mom album covers

For anyone that is looking into dipping their toe into the great, wonderous ocean that is Indigo De Souza’s music, here is a small list of my recommendations (not really in any particular order) for first-time listeners:

  • “Hold U”
  • “Take Off Ur Pants”
  • “Nomoah”
  • “Pretty Pictures”
  • “Real Pain” (*be warned, there is like a solid minute of pure screaming)
  • “Boys”
  • “Kill Me”
  • “Late Night Crawler”

    Indigo De Souza, I love you endlessly <33 (via Charlie Boss)

While I am tempted to list the band’s entire discography, I do think it is interesting to see what songs first-time listeners gravitate towards,and what “era” of their music they then continue to explore. For me, my first Indigo De Souza song was “Take Off Ur Pants,” which I’m pretty sure I found randomly from a playlist that I did not create. For a while, that was the only song of Indigo De Souza’s that I would listen to, but I was then exposed to “How I Get Myself Killed,” and I was hooked. It did not take me long to fall down an Indigo De Souza rabbit hole in which the band’s singles and albums were on repeat all the time. As of right now, I have been heavily drifting more toward Any Shape You Take more than I Love My Mom, but I think that overall, my Indigo De Souza listening habits vary a lot depending on where I am in life and how I have been feeling emotionally and mentally at the time.

Either way, if you happen to be an Indigo De Souza fan or were intrigued enough to give them a listen, happy listening!