After successfully breaking out in the indie music scene with her 2019 debut Beware Of The Dogs, Australian artist Stella Donnelly decided to take a different approach with her sophomore effort. Following months of lockdowns, self-discovery, and experimentation, Donnelly wrote 43 songs as she continually relocated across Australia. But after trusting the process and being struck with inspiration by a photo of migratory birds, Donnelly put finishing touches on Flood, an album that manages to encapsulate a range of emotions from meditative and confessional to witty and evocative.
As a whole, Flood displays Donnelly’s versitle songwriting from demure, piano-led ballads like “Underwater” to talky and bright numbers like the title track “Flood.” To celebrate the release of her sophomore album, Donnelly sits down with Uproxx to chat System Of A Down, rapping “Fergalicious”, and a banana cake failure in our latest Q&A.
What are four words you would use to describe your music?
Lyrics, piano, guitar, voice.
It’s 2050 and the world hasn’t ended and people are still listening to your music. How would you like it to be remembered?
What’s your favorite city in the world to perform?
Who’s the person who has most inspired your work, and why?
Broadcast, ballads disguised as ugliness, the best kind of music. I do ugly songs disguised as ballads though.
Where did you eat the best meal of your life?
Bar Idda on Lygon Street in Naarm.
What album do you know every word to?
Toxicity by System Of A Down.
What was the best concert you’ve ever attended?
Alex G in Berlin, he took requests and it was such a beautiful vibe.
What is the best outfit for performing and why?
Leotard and tights, I can do handstands.
Who’s your favorite person to follow on Twitter and/or Instagram?
What’s your most frequently played song in the van on tour?
“Let’s Have A Kiki” by The Scissor Sisters.
What’s the last thing you Googled?
Banana cake recipe aus (the cake was a failure).
What album makes for the perfect gift?
Depends on the receiver! I’m a voucher girl.
Where’s the weirdest place you’ve ever crashed while on tour?
A halfway house.
What’s the story behind your first or favorite tattoo?
I have a little girl sitting on my birthmark as though it’s a boulder, she’s looking through binoculars.
What artists keep you from flipping the channel on the radio?
What’s the nicest thing anyone has ever done for you?
My partner Marcel made me a leather book filled with photos of the people I love.
What’s one piece of advice you’d go back in time to give to your 18-year-old self?
It’s going to be okay.
What’s the last show you went to?
Tyler The Creator.
What movie can you not resist watching when it’s on TV?
Any of the Harry Potter movies.
What’s one of your hidden talents?
I can do the whole rap in Fergie’s “Fergalicious.”
Flood is out now via Secretly Canadian. Get it here.