When I was a teen, my mom would (jokingly?) advise me to tell boys who got too fresh that I was saving myself for Prince William and thus needed to preserve my virgin status. Though it never came to that, I've always had a soft spot for His Royal Cuteness, and I even tried to stay up last night to watch the live wedding coverage (I fell asleep somewhere in between Kate getting out of the Rolls and the "I will" portion of the ceremony). Since the wedding mix has been done already, I figured a royal-themed BitchTapes was in order to commemorate things. Prince William, this one's for you.
Cooly G is one of the UK's hottest artists at the moment, releasing singles on revered label Hyperdub (Burial, Kode 9, Ikonika) as well as setting up her own label, Dub Organizer. I caught up with her at a hectic time, with her four-year old son Nas clamouring for attention and a repairman in the house attempting—and by the end of the interview, failing—to fix a broken boiler. I found Cooly G to be by turns open and evasive, flinty and warm, funny, contradictory at times, but always compelling.
Poly Styrene, the lead singer of the pioneering punk band X-Ray Spex, died on Monday after a battle with cancer. She was 53.
Styrene's glass-shattering vocals made the band's 1978 album Germ Free Adolescents a punk masterpiece, and the song "Oh Bondage Up Yours!" in particular stands out as one of punk feminism's original eff yous to the sexism and prejudice that existed not only in mainstream society, but in the burgeoning punk community as well.
Brooklyn Vegan released the lineup for Lollapalooza 2011, Chicago's contribution to the summer festival circuit, today, and I'm sure they just MISPLACED the list with all the female acts on it, and that's coming shortly. Right? There's no WAY such an enormous festival wouldn't include a SINGLE WOMAN in their list of headliners? Ouch, Lolly. Ouch. I thought our love went deeper than that.
One of the more interesting women making electronic music lately is Laurel Halo. Halo has the distinct whiff of virtuoso about her, having spent time as a classical pianist, in orchestras, in improv noise collectives, on college radio. Her King Felix EP released last year was a strange concoction of mutant pop, classic '80s sounding synthpop production worked through a shoegaze haze of ethereal heavily reverbed vocals.
What happens when we have a female artist who only makes instrumental music? One of the things people might say when they hear instrumental music is that it's neutral, that it's impossible to tell the sex of the musician from the sound. But reading feminist theory has taught me to be suspicious of anything that claims to be neutral and unmarked. Read on for more about the instrumental music of Ikonika.
With her music swiping a big chunk of the 1980s, Pip Brown fittingly named herself Ladyhawke after the 1980s Michelle Pfieffer movie. Her music is evocative retrofuturistic electropop, nostalgia without a loss. Read on for more.
Cool kids (like our editorial intern Mel, for example) may have been tipped off to Austra long ago through lead singer Katie Stelmanis' work with the band Galaxy, but I only recently discovered this Toronto-based trio and I am loving them!