Petal | photo by Liz Parsons
Listen to Petal’s new single “You Really Love Me,” hear frontperson Kiley Lotz talk No More Dysphoria Fest with Hit Like A Girl’s Nicolle Maroulis
Both Philly artists are playing the benefit concert this weekend at Northern Liberties’ Ukie Club, supporting the nonprofit that provides resources and assistance to trans individuals.
- Petal - "You Really Love Me"
- Hit Like A Girl - "Boardwalk"
- Crooks and Nannies - "Control"
- Sonagi - "Newbold"
This week, Pennsylvania singer-songwriter Kiley Lotz released the first new single from their long-running project Petal — a dreamlike throwback pop jam in the vein of Fleetwood Mac and Carole King called “You Really Love Me.” It’s been five years since Petal’s last LP, Magic Gone, and in that time the frontperson has both put themselves out there and gigged hard, and also stepped back from an industry that is less than hospitable to emerging artists. This new song and others Petal has on deck will be released fully independently, Lotz tells us; it’s the music they want to make, shared on their own terms, and that’s how they want to approach their career going forward.
“You Really Love Me” was debuted last week on the WXPN Local Show, where Lotz talked about the meaning of the song — a reflection on the validation we all seek from friends and strangers on our ever-present phones — as well as the process of returning to their roots as a piano player, working free of deadlines, and the very specific reason they’re dropping the single now: No More Dysphoria Festival. It happens this Saturday, May 6th, at the Ukie Club in Northern Liberties, and features Petal’s first full-band set since 2020. The two-day showcase mixes indie pop and hardcore punk while raising funds for the titular nonprofit, an east coast org that provides resources and financial support to transgender, non-gender-conforming, and non-binary individuals.
“Now more than ever, it’s important to create spaces for us to gather and prioritize people in our community who need support the most,” Lotz said of the reason they wanted to be part of the event. “Music obviously is such a great way for people to commune, we do it all the time, we do it for a living some of us, or we try to at least. I think this festival represents something so important, and especially important now, as we see a lot of people trying to fundraise for their surgeries as soon as they can considering the legislation that’s getting passed in places like Tennesse. It’s important to say loudly that we have this access right now and we want to make sure people know about organizations like No More Dysphoria so they know that in this region there are people who want to help you who can help you get what you need, connect you with other trans people for support as a network, and provide a place for people to have fun for a couple hours and feel seen and feel safe. And that means a lot.”
No More Dysphoria founder Nicolle Maroulis also joined us on the show to talk about the mission of the nonprofit they started in 2015: “Everybody’s gender-affirming transition looks different to them. It’s very catered to the individual. Some people might feel their gender-affirming transition needs to go as far as any kind of surgical or medical means and some people might just needs gender-affirming clothes, and accessories. We try to help people in their transition however it looks for them.”
Listen to the full conversation in the player above, and also hear a playlist of artists performing at No More Dysphoria Fest this weekend. For tickets and more information on the event, head to WXPN’s Concerts and Events page. Below, watch Petal’s new music video for “You Really Love Me,” which features Lotz getting ready for a date at a roadside motel; we see them singing into their hairbrush in the mirror, checking their salmon-salmon fit in the jacuzzi mirror, and submerging themselves in chlorinated water and pizza when they get stood up. The video was shot by Liz Parsons of Lippy and Big Nothing and edited by Lotz. For more on No More Dysphoria, head to their website.