Thursday, June 26, 2008

lady problems: Electrelane

The other day I was over at my dad's house, helping him search on the myspace for local artists who might want to let him use their music on the cheaps in his documentary on hang-gliding. He got really worked up about this lady, Laurie Morvan, particularly her song "Girls With Guitars". By "worked up", I mean he made me listen to it like 100 times and displayed some of his best old white guy in an office chair dance moves. I must admit, she is an excellent guitarist, but I think my dad was trying to get at something else with his song selection, namely, "where are the girls with guitars?"

Firstly, he was saying, hey betch, I got you a Danelectro when you were fourteen so why on Earth are you not a rockstar yet? Secondly, female artists blah blah rock blah under-represented in the blah blah mainstream media blah blah blah, and it reminded me of an issue I often forget because I grew up idolizing Sleater-Kinney and because I don't really listen to the radio much anyway (except for the Swami).

I have been slapped in the face with this issue too. Inevitably, when my old (all girl) band performed, some dude would say some boneheaded thing in earnest, like "Whoa, you chicks rock, like even though you're chicks. Weird." And I was always so surprised. In my head, asking a question like, "where are the girls with guitars?" is like asking, "when will women get to vote?" It already happened, y'all. It's happening now. If you can't see it, you're not looking. It's not just girl bands, and we're not all just singers. If I make music, my ladybits have nothing to do with it, unless I finally get around to that concept album written from my catbag's perspective (tentatively titled "Lady Vadge Sings the Blues") or start using my bosoms to play the drums.

So, yeah, I feel like I DO need that much introduction for my new whenever I feel like it feature "lady problems" because I think it is kind of weird to be like, "It's not a big deal that I'm a girl but let's make a big deal about these other girls being girls" without first acknowledging that some things need to be addressed until nobody feels like they need to ask about them anymore and this "women in music thing" is one of them. Apparently.

Without further ado, I present to you Electrelane, a band from the UK who are pretty fucking awesome for being lesbians (according to some really enlightened youtube commenters, I don't really know anything about their sexual orientation)

This song "To the East" is off their awesome 2007 release No Shouts No Calls. They are currently on "indefinite hiatus" but they have plenty of old material to keep you satisfied. I recommend 2004's The Power Out for more vaguely poppy gems and 2001's Rock it to the Moon for heavy keyboard jams, like "Film Music":


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