Throwing Muses- Not Too Soon

I’m about two and a half years into this thing and I’ve never posted about this band. Granted, the whole point is to highlight musicians who don’t typically pop up on every “best female fronted” top ten out there (lists that always seem to be copying each other)- but it’s good to be reminded why they are held in that regard.

Throwing Muses as a name are generally lumped in with a couple of other alternative gems from their era, but they were were so much more influential than what many give them credit for.

They had the ability to craft brilliant pop songs, but they were never standard about it. They had such a unique take on song structure and chord progressions, always making things a bit unpredictable.

This particular song was one that Tanya apparently worked on for years. You can hear the demo version just to see how far it came. If you really pay attention to it as a whole, it’s ridiculous. There are so many different elements involved, from the surf drums to the Joe Meek-like guitar riff. It all combines to be something so of its time, yet… timeless? That doesn’t make sense, but neither does their material. There are certainly elements of their 80s/90s surroundings, but they are not defined by them. I am also just a massive fan of pretty voices that aren’t afraid to be a bit weird, and “Not Too Soon” has the best example of that I could possibly think of (I’m also a fan of people singing along to their riffs). Apologies if you follow me on any other media, or if you’re one of my flatmates, because this is literally the only song I’ve been listening to the past few days.

That isn’t to say this is the only track worth noting, of course. I found a couple of second hand Throwing Muses LPs in a record shop recently, and it’s made me realize how little I’ve paid attention to them over the years- at least compared to other bands they’re associated with. Both Tanya Donelly and Kristin Hersh are prolific in their own rights. Donelly is best known for her contributions to The Breeders and then going on to form Belly, where as Hersh has had a very notable solo career. I’ve always admired them, but full appreciation is long overdue.

This is from the album The Real Ramona.

Title: To Think That You've Thought Of Me Lately Artist: Auty Lynn 38 plays

Auty Lynn- To Think That You’ve Thought Of Me Lately

Folk from London, Ontario.

It may seem a cop out to post music made by friends of mine, but I only do it because I genuinely enjoy what they do.

I first met Auty back in 2005. She was only just turning fourteen, but she already had a strong command of her musical talent. I can remember her playing covers on her acoustic guitar to our friends at parties. It was that same year that she began to write her own original material. These songs would go on to become her first album, released under the name Autumn Macher in 2010.

This song popped up recently, and perhaps it’s a mix of sentiment and the fact that it’s a familiar voice, but it really hit a nerve. Auty has one of the most gorgeous voices I’ve known, but it’s not overbearing. There is a vulnerability to her vocals that makes her songs sound so much more sincere.

She took a long break from music over the past few years, but has recently returned to playing live again and will hopefully be following up with new material.

This is from her album, Tiny.

Kenny Kenny Oh Oh- Add 60 Seconds (To The Bechdel Test)

Punk from Leipzig, Germany.

With a name that is apparently an ode to Le Tigre, it’s not too surprising that Kenny Kenny Oh Oh is heavily influenced by riot grrrl. Simple, upbeat, fast punk rock with a message. The musical aesthetic is still in place, with the lyrics addressing modern issues within feminism. This track in particular is a snarly reference of The Bechdel test, which, if you’re not already aware, measures the roles of women in fiction/entertainment. The song’s call of “add sixty seconds to my fucking presence!” pretty much sums up many people’s frustration with that subject. In the most fun and catchy way possible, of course.

This is from their self titled 7” release.

In School- Praxis of Hate

Hardcore punk from NYC.

This is the sort of band that should serve as a guideline to the genre. Fast, brash bursts of anger and energy. No nonsense.

Coming from a city that has had such a large influence on hardcore as a whole, there’s something very refreshing about In School- musically and politically. NYC HC has famously been known as a straight white boys club, and In School counteract that. One of the main attractions about punk as a whole is its relation to outsiders, and this band serves as a brilliant reaction within a scene that can, unfortunately, be a bit exclusive. Bidi Choudhury’s bold and aggressive vocals are quite traditional in a sense, but they still stand out.

This is from their EP of the same name, Praxis of Hate.

Nikki W- Transparent Hands

Pop/alternative from London, Ontario, Canada.

You might not believe it by her voice, but Nikki W is only sixteen years old. Not only that, but she has already been performing for years, joining her first band when she was just eleven. She formerly played under the name Orianna, which leaned more towards rock influences. This change in musical direction really enhances her songwriting ability. It also proves that her vocals could do well in any genre. The switch to her given name seems quite fitting considering the material seems to be coming from a very personal place.

Nikki W fancies herself as an old soul, but for someone to be where she is at that age, it will be interesting to see what her future holds.

This is from her upcoming EP, Sad Generation.