“Cruel, Cruel, Cruel” dropped on all streaming platforms on September 13, 2023 and is a driving, anthemic song about the disappointments and frustrations of love. The song was written by Dobken who also sang, played drums, and guitar on the track. It was produced by Erik Kase Romero (The Front Bottoms) alongside Dobken.
“Cruel is about the frustrations in knowing that you and a certain someone love each another, but the other person has decided to shut you out,” said Dobken.
“One day while dealing with the emotional fall out from said situation, I was showering and heard the hook as a complete melodic/lyrical thought.”
The video for the song, shot at Long Branch, New Jersey’s famed skate park, was directed by Nick Wolf of Howl Peak Productions (with help from Pete Carter and Allie Leavy). The video features Dobken singing, playing drums and guitar while flanked by bassist Dan Haase and guitarist Erik Rudic (Baquenne, Cold Seas, The Parlor Mob). The song also includes Mark Masefield (Rick Barry). The video was edited by Dobken and Wolf.
In regards to the concept of the video, Dobken states:
“I always had loved the concept of shooting this song at a skate park for multiple reasons.”
She continued, “One, I felt it really fit the melodic and fast-paced energy of the song. And two, I grew up surrounded by surfing and skating around Asbury Park, NJ and it has always been something that inspired me. We got lucky and shot this on a perfect day, and at a location barely touched by time, so it gives this nostalgic feeling while also leaving the audience wondering where we are (is it CA? NJ)?! It gives you the warmth and excitement that feels like a summertime daydream. I wanted to get in there and rip it up (both with the skaters and by playing)!”
Stay tuned for our upcoming episode of Anchored in Asbury featuring Rachel Ana Dobken n on the Pop Break Today podcast feed.