This September, Schooltree returns to OBERON to reprise their new rock opera Heterotopia live in its entirety after the sold out premiere performance earlier this year. This show celebrates the release of the companion book to the album: kaleidoscopic watercolor storyboard illustrations telling the story of Suzi in Otherspace, including lyrics, plot synopsis and character information.
From siren song of doom to shredding anthem of the righteous, Schooltree is art rock built for an amphitheater. Their “fantastically, defiantly ambitious” (NPR) second studio release and multimedia epic Heterotopia fuses the research of classical music and literature with high-voltage pop songwriting in an absorbing, allegorical story. A dark call from the bottom of a river beckons you to leap, while a strange angel’s voice stutters in and out of spacetime to guide you to salvation. This is the music of dream and nightmare — a prism of sound shining through a crack in the sidewalk from another world.
When Suzi loses her body, she must make her way through a parallel world of the collective unconscious called Otherspace to get it back. But the road she must travel has been overtaken by shadows and chaos. In order to become whole again, Suzi must uncover the origins of this darkness, in a journey that takes her from the neon lights of her plasterboard horizon home to the bottom of a cursed river, where the fate of Otherspace and her own are inextricably linked.
Following the classic hero’s quest in a modern urban setting, Heterotopia explores the themes of dystopia, dissociation, and the spaces we occupy – and how they interact with one another to create transformation.
Led by “determined frontwoman” (WBUR) and artist/producer with a “singular view on all things musical” (Fireworks Magazine) Lainey Schooltree, the grant-awarded 5-piece band charts a stubbornly individualistic path in the era of the algorithm-driven pop single with this effort.