The Distillers break stereotypes with loud music

March is Women’s History month, so I found it entirely appropriate to review an album that is not only recent but was also created by strong women. The Distillers have been rocking the punk world for years. Brody the lead screamer-singer/guitarists is originally from Australia. She met her best friend and bandmate Rose in Detroit long ago. Andy plays drums and Ryan sings and plays bass. Originally the line-up consisted of Kim on bass – but alas she left the band for bigger things. Their latest, “Sing Sing Death House” was released on February 12, 2002 on Hellcat Records and is also distributed by Epitaph Records. For a sophomore album, their sound has improved as well as their following. Cute little Mohawked girls everywhere look to these two hardcore punk rock girls to keep it real, and they certainly do. This album screeches reality and lives up to the punk rock rules of honesty above all else and the “screw you” attitude that started years and years ago.I can’t really say that this album is that unique from other punk albums, but I will say that hardcore-raw women are always a nice sight in the current music world. Women who can rock hard and sing loud should always be admired (in my book) especially when they are dealing with a society where women who wear tiny shirts and skintight jeans are all the rage. In our society, women who can dance and who show their breasts are sought after.These women, the two leading females of The Distillers are singing a completely different song. They sing of reality and of truth, in the song “Idoless” Brody screams, “You’d better find out what your place is/Urban plight is in the city streets/It is infectious and you are complacent/the idol is within you watch it come on through/the idol is within you watch it come on through.”These women have certainly been around the block a time or two – singing their words and screaming their truth in New York City, in Los Angeles, in Detroit. These women have learned that just because they are women they are not second class. They are not less than best. They can run with the big boys. They sing of other women who allow themselves to be demeaned and to be lessened by society – lessened by themselves and they say to them, “No more coquettish look on your face/not so much pretty but you’re in your place/hide behind your man/don’t dare think for you/keep your claws off me as I walk on through/I’m not the kind of girl who will just pull your hair/I’ll turn you black and blue.”For those interested in girl punk rock bands there are a variety that scream truth and are filled with the rawness that every punk rocker and every poet loves to hear. Check out Bikini Kill, Team Dresch, The Gossip, The Raincoats, Bratmobile, The Donnas and of course, Sleater-Kinney.The Distillers are currently touring with Sick of It All and Suicide Machines. To learn more about The Distillers go to www.thedistillers.com and be sure to support the women of punk and buy their new CD, “Sing Sing Death House.”

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