(CU Independent illustration/Adam Milner)
Although female singers seem to be all over the pop charts right now, it’s hard not to be a little disappointed that ladies aren’t better represented on the rock charts.
Whether the song is anguished or exultant, it always feels like women are more expressive artists. Even though men like Thom Yorke and Chris Martin have amazing voices, they still can’t help fill the void for the saccharine vocals of these lovely ladies.
Use this compilation of female bands and singers by CU Independent Staff Writer Jenny Gumbert as the guide to women who rock.
“Le chat du Café des Artistes,” by Charlotte Gainsbourg
Much like her father Serge, Charlotte Gainsbourg creates perfect French pop, but hers has a dark twist. This track, off of her most recent Beck-produced album, is a perfect example of how Gainsbourg can take simple songs and add a peculiar edge that is all her own. With her mysterious whisper and a backdrop of sinister strings, this song easily leaves any listener intrigued.
“Sleep Alone,” by Bat for Lashes
With instruments like harpsichord and autoharp, English songstress Natasha Khan, the lady behind Bat for Lashes, brings whimsy to a somewhat bland pop music scene. Her particular brand of synthpop combines lyrics about sirens with songs about love. A concept album based around an alter ego named Pearl, Khan transforms herself from desert spirit into a femme fatale. Pearl laments a lost love, singing, “lonely, lonely, lonely,” while synthesizers layer into an explosive electric climax as Pearl dances her loneliness away.
“10 Mile Stereo,” by Beach House
On Beach House’s second album, “Devotion,” it sounded like singer Victoria Legrand had had some bad days as she moaned from track to track, nursing some serious wounds. So it was a wonderful surprise when their latest album, titled “Teen Dream,” was an uplifting dream-pop masterpiece. No song soars quite as high as this one. “They don’t know how far we’ll go/ with our legs on the edge and our feet on the horizon,” Legrand croons with just a simple guitar filling the space behind her husky voice. It feels as if Legrand is about to fall off the edge of a cliff, but with vocals so beautiful, they let her fly as high as she can go.
“Wild Eyes,” by The Vivian Girls
The Vivian Girls prove that grit and grime isn’t just for the boys; it can be pretty too. Rock doesn’t have to be complicated, and this group of three Brooklyn gals plays lo-fi rock that is as simple as drums, guitar and bass. With influences that range from girl groups of the 60s and garage rock, singers Cassie Ramone and Kickball Katy harmonize sweetly as thumping drums and spiky guitars pierce through.
Contact CU Independent Staff Writer Jenny Gumbert at Jenny.email@example.com.
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