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Following “22 Break,” their fourth album titled the same name, dropped at the end of 2021, embodying a much more contemporary and mature sound, reflective of the years the *Vander Wests have shared together. (Photo provided by @OhWonderMusic via Twitter).

Artist Spotlight: Oh Wonder is a couple who has defied all the odds

Oh Wonder is comprised of Josephine and Anthony Vander West, having a steady following since 2015. The alternative-pop duo has been able to open for major artists such as Halsey, as well as perform at Bonnaroo and Sasquatch.

Yet, the two almost went their separate ways during the COVID-19 pandemic, jeopardizing the musical career they had been building for the last five years at that point. Luckily, the Vander Wests’ managed to realize their love for one another again through creating their sister albums 22 Break, which came out in 2021 and 22 Make, which drops on July 22.

How exactly did they become Oh Wonder though? Well, it all started in 2014, releasing their first single “Body Gold” to SoundCloud. A year later, with the help of Vine, many songs off their first self-titled project such as “Lose It” and “Shark” went viral on the app, as many users performed dances or lip-synched to their lyrics.

From then, the group gained more listeners and released videos to more songs off the album, including one for their heartbreak anthem “Without You,” but the duo was ready to expand into further creative realms.

Two years later, they dropped their sophomore album Ultralife, venturing into the genres of jazz and electro-pop that weren’t afraid to address the ups and downs of being in a relationship. Josephine’s vocals were also improved, extremely evident with songs such as “Ultralife” and “Heavy.”

After touring throughout the United States, Europe and Asia, the Vander Wests took a three-year hiatus that later resulted in their 2020 album No One Else Can Wear Your Crown, but due to the pandemic, didn’t gain as much traction as their previous works.

2020 proved to be a challenge for all musicians, but the couple stayed busy by starting their own coffee shop in their home country of the United Kingdom. Canceling their tour and focusing on their new business, the group was actively involved with NOLA, but this created tension between the two.

Contemplating going their separate ways, the two started making music again to cope with their emotions. Luckily, this new chapter in their musical catalog allowed them to grow closer again.

Oh Wonder was officially a married couple this past August, a clear example that love can truly conquer all, even if the music industry tries to test it. Shortly after their wedding, they dropped “22 Break,” a song that perfectly encapsulated how it feels to be struggling in a relationship.

Following “22 Break,” their fourth album titled the same name, dropped at the end of 2021, embodying a much more contemporary and mature sound, reflective of the years the Vander Wests have shared together.

Now, the two are currently on tour in Europe and will be traveling to the United States this summer to perform their new music. They are also preparing to release 22 Make this July, which will for sure be an unforgettable companion to their previous work.

grace_koe

gk011320@ohio.edu


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