Vocalist Lexa "Ophelia" Vonn describes Ophelia Rising best: "Our sound is the Go-Go's meets Marilyn Manson and our imagery is Kenneth Anger meets Russ Meyer." The band holds up to this self-portrait by combining punk intensity; metal riffs; and dark, erotic, gothic overtones.
Ophelia Rising's roots are in Boston, MA, where in 1994 founding member Lexa, then high school student Yvonne Nicoletti, was arrested in an anti-censorship protest defending the art of White Zombie. Rob Zombie, commenting on Lexa's case, said, "I thought they stopped burning witches in Massachusetts a long time ago. This is another classic case of an outdated school system trying to break the spirit of an intelligent, free thinking student." After the American Civil Liberties Union battled for her in a court of law, securing a dismissal of the case, Lexa packed her bags for Los Angeles to pursue a career in rock & roll.
In Los Angeles, Lexa go-go danced for the Mentors, self-published her book Girl's Guide to Hitchhiking, and even worked as a personal assistant for KRS-One. In 2000, she appeared as Ophelia Rising with Abominable Id on the Dwell Records Marilyn Manson tribute, Anthems of Rust and Decay.
In 2001, Lexa recruited rhythm guitarist Echo Depression, bassist Isis Kano, guitarist Satania heraManic, and drummer Cat for the band. Ophelia Rising then went into the studio with legendary punk producer Geza X (Dead Kennedys, Black Flag) and recorded their debut EP, Step 1: Acknowledge You Are Part of the System, a sexy, angst-ridden record reminiscent of early Hole that includes a sinister cover of Lesley Gore's '60s pop classic "You Don't Own Me."