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Sisters are Shredding For Themselves
By Scott Thill July 10, 2008 | 3:36:00 PMCategories: Music News, People

A little over two years ago, Sleater-Kinney went on indefinite hiatus, robbing rock of its most potent female power trio ever.

I would go so far as to say one of the most potent bands ever, but that's where it gets tricky. Women in rock want to be treated just like everyone else, but that's impossible, especially when you enter the terrain of representation. Which you almost always do. Rare is the year that goes by where men or women or both simply kick back and say "You know what? Gender in rock is no longer an issue."

And sure, Joan Jett just landed a signature Gibson. But she's the first female to ever land one.

So I, for one, keep counting. These days, I'm counting out some possible heirs to Sleater-Kinney's throne, including one straight out of Joan Jett's Blackheart Records called Girl in a Coma. The all-female Texas power trio got its name from Morrissey, but he returned the favor by asking the band to open for him. The trio has served similar stints with everyone from Frank Black and Social Distortion to Cyndi Lauper. Check it out on tour starting July 12 and see what you think of its poppy punkabilly.

And then there is the sublime shred of Marnie Stern, pictured above, a simply sick guitar player whose fretwork comes off like a cross between Eddie Van Halen and Ian Mackaye. Her challenging music is a mash of math, punk and thrash, and isn't for the faint of heart, which makes it all the more addictive. She's a serious brain-teaser, whose lyricism owes much to sci-fi, dada and more.

Stern's first effort In Advance of the Broken Arm nodded in Duchamp's direction, and garnered her critical acclaim, thanks to a stack of jagged noise experiments that defied classification. Her next disc, due in October from Kill Rock Stars, is rumored to be a much poppier affair. I say rumored, because it's title is This Is It and I Am It and You Are It and So Is That and He Is It and She Is It and It Is It and That Is That.

So yeah, there are more females than ever crafting incredible sonics. But until the numbers even out, I'm going to keep crunching them. Especially when some tool is saying Kim Gordon is too old to rock and roll.