All posts by loudwomen

Kelly Hoppenjans: If I Had You (Love Letter from a Padded Cell) – track of the day

Today’s track of the day is an instant classic from Nashville’s Kelly Hoppenjans – ‘If I Had You’ – out today! The track parodies the “crazy ex-girlfriend” archetype. She says:

“pop music tends to glorify obsessive romantic relationships, while society often dismisses women who express how damaging this type of partnership can be.”

Crazy ex-girlfriend solidarity.

Run and find out more about Kelly Hoppenjans at soundcloud spotify twitter facebook instagram

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Gaptooth: Post-Patriarchy Disco – video premiere

We’re excited to premier the video for new Gaptooth song ‘Post-Patriarchy Disco’! The track – which appears on our very own LOUD WOMEN: Volume Two compilation (pre-order it now!) is taken from Gaptooth’s forthcoming second album Sharp Minds, Raised Fists, due out 11 October.

The video features some familiar faces from the LOUD WOMEN community, including Petrol Girls, Miss Eaves and I, Doris.

Gaptooth – aka Hannah Lucy – had this to say about the song:

“’Post-Patriarchy Disco’ imagines the massive fucking party we’ll throw when we finally overthrow the patriarchy. I wrote it as a tribute to some of the incredible, unstoppable feminist activists I’ve had the honour of organising with in recent years, and I wanted to capture the sense of empowerment and solidarity that comes from working together to achieve radical political goals.”

To celebrate the video release, Hannah has also produced a selection of disco-themed ‘Liberation Now’ badges and stickers available on her Bandcamp page. You can get a download of ‘Post-Patriarchy Disco’ here when you pre-order Sharp Minds, Raised Fists.

Catch Gaptooth live at LOUD WOMEN Fest 4 on 14 September – see the full line up and get your tickets here.

Strange Neighbors: How to Human / Alien – track of the day

Today’s track of the day is from New York’s Strange Neighbors: ‘How to Human’ and it’s a lesson in how to create perfect indie pop. So much so, we asked the band to give us some further schooling. Here’s what guitarist Zach said:

We used a couple of different guitars on this tune, the most drastic differences in tone being between the first and second halves of the song. Throughout the song, Dana plays a Fender Mark Hoppus Precision Bass, which regardless of your feelings on Blink-182, is a great sounding instrument. On the first half, “How to Human” I’m playing a Fender Telecaster for the rhythm guitar, and then arpeggiating on my Danelectro DC 12 String. They’re both very bright sounding guitars, which give the first chunk it’s jangly sound. I think both guitars are played through one of the Fender Silverface models, for that really clean sound. For the second half of the song, “Alien” I used totally different guitars. The main guitar on that half is a Gibson SG, which has a much thicker sound and is really the way to go for that overdriven, punky sort of sound. One of Mike’s fuzz pedals is on there, but I can’t recall any particular brand or model. We double or triple-tracked that guitar so it sounds huge. The guitar used for all those sound effects and crazy feedback is a Jackson guitar from the 80’s. It has a Floyd Rose on it, and that lets you do all those wild bends and divebombs. To record those, I stood in front of the amp, and we cranked the volume so it would start feeding back. It sounds impressive but it’s actually really easy to do, as you’re pretty much hitting random notes.

How to Human and Alien were written by Aidan as two separate songs that the band mashed together because it was too fun and perfect not to. How toHuman is a song about a feeling I feel all the time, like I’m just pretending to be a human in a world of actual humans. Sometimes I feel like I’m faking it, or “passing” really well (like the line in the bridge “Don’t I look like you don’t I move like you, why can’t I quite pass?”) and sometimes I don’t seem to get this human experience at all. I feel like the alien in human skin.

The verses of the song always make me laugh, like sneaking into a party, saying you know Nancy (there must be a Nancy at every party, right?) and ending up drunk and alone in the shower with the house pet. Or the second verse, going for a long drive with a human, a cannibal bastard, still trying to figure out how to operate. They have their feet on the dashboard, so I follow suit, but oops I’m driving, well at least my hands are still on  the wheel.

Then Alien is where it gets really fun and crazy. The  backstory of the song is a friend confiding in me that they found an alien, and I am doing all I can to convince them to give me the alien. It’s kind of a metaphor for your inner alien, and weirdness, coming out when you find something or someone you relate to on that level. Desperate to learn more and connect with that thing, and that alien side to ourselves.

Most of our songs feel really lighthearted, sometimes vague, but every line can be a metaphor, usually for darker or more intense themes.

Find Strange Neighbors on soundcloud spotify facebook instagram

MIRI: 10 question interview

MIRI is coming to play our Unplugged night at the Old Queen’s Head this Thursday 22 August! We got to know her better with our 10 questions …

1. For people who’ve not heard you play live before, what can we expect from you at the LOUD WOMEN gig?

Grit and sound vibes 

2. Which is your favourite song to play and why? Tell us about it …

At the moment it’s a cover of Girls Just Want To Have Fun. It feels really powerful to perform and allows me to vent emotionally about inequality. Sony have given me clearance to release it so I’m looking forward to getting it out there to more people. 

3. Do some super-lazy journalism on our behalf please, and fill in the blanks:

“My sound is like the lovechild of _Edith Piaf_ and _Amy Winehouse_ with a bit on the side from _Paolo Nutini_” 

4. What’s your proudest musical moment to date?

Everything feels a bit of a blur at the moment but the success and positive response from my Soundbites EP I feel pretty proud of. It’s the first full project I’ve co produced and I’ve received amples of love from fans and press like yourselves + Clash Magazine, London In Stereo, Jasmine Dotiwala at BBC London and Fubar Radio. 

5. Recommend a record and a book that you think our readers might not have heard of.

Friends Like These by Danny Wallace. I remember laughing out loud when I read it. And These Days by Nico cos it’s heart wrenchingly beautiful and bittersweet. 

6. Who inspires you?

Patti Smith. I love how she follows creativity. When I was at a real low point a few years back I decided to live the year in the spirit of Patti Smith. I had many adventures. 

8. What are your musical goals?

I’d love to perform my music at Glastonbury and on the Jools Holland Show. 

9. What’s the most important thing we need to know about your music right now?

My new EP Soundbites is out digitally and I’m playing Greenbelt Festival Sunday 25th August. 

10. Pass the mic – who are your top 5 contemporary bands/musicians.

1. Kate Nash – I recommend her documentary Underestimate The Girl. She’s gone through some real rough times as an artist and hasn’t given up.

2. Paolo Nutini – I love his voice and track Iron Sky, it resonates so much truth and power.

3. Bikini Kill – I saw their show at the 02 Brixton Academy. Pure legends. They create a positive environment for womxn to feel free and empowered. 

4. Yolanda Charles – Yolanda is musical royalty and she kindly said yes to playing bass on two of the tracks on my Soundbites EP. 

5. Nia Wyn – Nia’s voice is unique and raw. Her songs are hard hitting and honest. 

Mia Stegner: Born – track of the day

Today’s track of the day is some highly relatable content from Mia Stegner: ‘Born’. She says of the track:

I came out as bisexual in September of 2016, and this song is a reflection on that experience. The lyrics dive into the metaphor of the closet, in order to look at the pros and cons of choosing to leave it. As important as it is to encourage and celebrate coming out, it’s also critical to acknowledge the draw of the closet, especially in the context of the society we live in. Made up of overlapping harmonies on top of a beautiful guitar track by Ramita Arora, this track is an LGBTQ+ anthem infused with bits of fear, hope, and doubt.

Find Mia Stegner at miastegner spotify youtube twitter instagram

I am HER/Julie Riley: 10 question interview

Julie Riley aka I am HER is coming to play our Unplugged night at the Old Queen’s Head this Thursday 22 August! We got to know her better with our 10 questions …

1. For people who’ve not heard you play live before, what can we expect from you at the LOUD WOMEN gig? 

A bit of punk /alt folk hits the mark. I’ll play acoustic but that doesn’t mean it will be sweet, quiet folk.

2. Which is your favourite song to play and why? Tell us about it … 

I really like playing ‘Heretic’ as its very therapeutic, tends to connect a lot for other women (amongst other genders ) and it’s the song I am least likely to mess up live which means I can relax and actually enjoy it. 

3. Do some super-lazy journalism on our behalf please, and fill in the blanks:

“My sound is like the lovechild of PJ Harvey  and Patti Smith with a bit on the side from Taylor Swift”.  Well, that might be overstating it but basically  full of stories, dark, punky and a little bit pop/catchy. 

4. What’s your proudest musical moment to date?

I have to cite a moment in the 90s – I was recording a song at Abbey Rd studios with Clare Grogan singing my lyrics, Steve Albini on the desk and I even got to meet George Martin too. Our then band, Rosa Mota were recording our 2nd album and we were the first ones to use the famous studio the Beatles recorded in after it had been refurbished . George Martin was given the grand tour while we were there. I remember thinking at the time – well this is a moment and a half. Album was called Bionic, track ‘This Grudge’ if anyone wants to look it up!

5. Recommend a record and a book that you think our readers might not have heard of.

 Book: 2+2 = 5 by Viv Boot. Based on a true story by and about a friend of mine, falling in love, not coming out and spending time in prison (the latter not because of the former 2 points ). It’s funny, witty, easy to read and I’m sure it will touch a lot of hearts. 

Record: That Dog by That Dog – great crunchy, dirty guitars, low slung bass lines and discordant harmonies.

6. One for the guitarists … bore us with the details of your set-up please.

I am no guitar geek  – I keep it all as simple as I can. Up til now I have been using  a Tanglewood acoustic but have just got myself a vintage Yamaha hybrid electro acoustic that has an acoustic pick up and a jazz one. I keep it on acoustic as it has more grit. I have 1 pedal which I use very sparingly – a Big Muff.  My amp is an HH electronic, which apparently is the same as used by the Buzzcocks. I recorded with it but when playing live I just what ever there is.

7. Who inspires you? 

Where to begin? My daughters, Suffragettes, Michelle Obama, P J Harvey, Kristin Hersh, friends and family, young people, the organisers of Loud Women and She17 doing great work in their spare time to make doing music more possible for people like me. I also have to say Daniel Miller and all at Mute records who never stop putting out music because they love it and believe in it – not to make money. 

8. What are your musical goals? 

Musically to get a point where we are performing more – would love to get enough from it so that we can give up our day jobs and do it more. 

9. What’s the most important thing we need to know about your music right now? 

 We mean it and we are not going away. 

10. Pass the mic – who are your top 5 contemporary bands/musicians.

In no particular order….

Big Joanie – Sistahs (album) I just do not get bored of. It’s great. And these young women are pushing boundaries, which I love. 

Le Butcherettes – have you seen them live? Dear god they are beyond awesome. I should have cited their level of performance as 1 of our musical goals. 

Sit Down – fierce sound. I love ‘Mothership’. Duo, female drummer. They fascinate me. 

ARXX – these women are joyous to watch and their latest single, Iron Lung – I wish it was ours. 

Noise and the Naive – I saw these at a Loud Women gig (Hope and Anchor) and have been hooked ever since. Another duo (I seem have picked 3 – funny that). I find them inspirational. 

Catch Julie Riley/I am HER this Thursday 22 August at the Old Queen’s Head


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