Stove began as the solo vehicle of Ovlov's Steve Hartlett, releasing a 2015 album, Is Stupider, that inhabited the same universe of overloaded guitars, plaintive vocals, and '90s influences as Ovlov.
With the addition of steady bandmembers, especially drummer/vocalist Jordyn Blakely, the group grew into something that expanded on the Ovlov sound, adding more space and softness on their 2018 record, 's Favorite Friend.
Soon after Ovlov's breakup in early 2015, Hartlett immediately began reworking material he had intended for his former band into the dark, fuzz-heavy format of what he would eventually brand Stove. Playing all of the guitar, bass, and drums himself, Hartlett recorded Stove's debut in a productive three-day session in rural Vermont with co-producers Nick Dooley and Dan Francia (from the Brooklyn band Flagland). Ovlov's former label, Exploding in Sound, agreed to release Hartlett's new project, and Stove's debut LP, Is Stupider, was issued in November 2015.
Many musicians played in the live incarnation of Stove, but the lineup coalesced around Hartlett, Blakely, and bassist Alex Molini. This trio released two EPs in 2016: Is a Toad in the Rain in August and Is the Meat That Fell Out in December. Hartlett and his Ovlov bandmates reunited that same year and began playing regularly while working on new songs. The result was 2018's Tru. At the same time, Stove -- which now included Ovlov guitarist Mike Hammond -- were getting their second album together. Arriving in 2018, 's Favorite Friend was colored by the loss of loved ones and saw the group coming together with a unified sound born of collaboration and the careful honing of the songs from basement demos to finished works. ~ Timothy Monger, Rovi