wears the trousers magazine


my ruin: through the wound

words in edgeways with tairrie b of my ruin

Let’s be upfront about this: whichever way you look at it, Tairrie B is pretty much a goddess. As frontwoman for LA-based rockers My Ruin, one of metal’s most accomplished underground bands, she’s an uncompromising icon of feminine strength and a deliciously outspoken one at that. Famously controversial, she’s had her fair share of wranglings with the press but as Wears The Trousers discovers there’s so much more to Tairrie than her trademark screech and howl and ‘difficult’ reputation. The backstage footage accompanying the band’s new live album and DVD, Alive On The Other Side, portrays a very different side to the singer and does more to reveal the vital lifeblood of My Ruin than ever before. We grabbed a moment with Tairrie just before their show at The Engine Rooms in Brighton during the band’s Religiosity tour and discovered how a near-fatal car accident nearly cost her an arm, who she wants as the next US President and how she’s really just a girly girl at heart, not to mention her surprising and little known past as an academy-besting army cadet…

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amanda palmer dedicates new video to sarah palin
October 30, 2008, 9:12 pm
Filed under: news, trouser shorts, video | Tags: , , , , , ,

Abortion tale gets hilariously graphic video

Binge drinking, simulated sex, fundamentalist Christian protesters and a bright pink coathanger going somewhere it shouldn’t. Yep, it can only be the long-awaited video for Amanda Palmer’s ‘Oasis’, a relentlessly perky tale of a reckless young lady who gets pregnant after drinking too much at a party but it’s all okay because her favourite Britpop band send her a letter. It’s all a bit ‘Little Britain’, but, y’know, actually funny. Watch out for Ben Folds as her nervous, long-suffering boyfriend and that little snitch Melissa. Video of the year so far? VP hopeful Sarah Palin, a staunchly anti-choice pro-lifer, will surely disagree, which is all the more reason to celebrate Amanda’s dedicating the clip to the nauseating “pitbull in lipstick”.

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lucinda williams has a bone to pick with the republicans
October 23, 2008, 6:40 pm
Filed under: news, trouser press, video | Tags: , , , , ,

New EP of protest songs on the way from “yellow-dog Democrat”

Exactly two weeks after her latest album Little Honey hit the shops and exactly one week before the US presidential election, Lucinda Williams is set to release a four-song digital EP of politically charged live material including a previously unreleased original track and three well-chosen covers. The new song, ‘Bone Of Contention’, was recorded at Summerfest in Milwaukee this past July and, as Williams told Billboard in a recent interview, was originally earmarked for Little Honey. “The track didn’t come out the way I wanted it to [in the studio],” she explains. “We went out to do some shows, as I played the song by myself…it just came out killer.”

The covers sound pretty killer too, and pretty diverse at that. Recorded live in Greensboro, North Carolina, in September 2007, the songs include Bob Dylan’s ‘Masters Of War’, Buffalo Springfield’s ‘For What It’s Worth’ and the Thievery Corporation/Flaming Lips collaboration ‘Marching The Hate Machines (Into The Sun)’. And in case you’re still wondering whose side she’s on after reading those titles, this quote from another interview (with Rolling Stone) caught my eye: “I’m a yellow-dog Democrat, which is a Southern expression that means you always vote Democrat. I love this country, and I’m concerned that people aren’t going to be looking at the issues. Like, ‘I’m gonna vote for the cute babe who hunts.'” 

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trouser press: kristin hersh, alela diane and more

in today’s trouser press:

– Kristin Hersh brings The Shady Circle to London
– Alela Diane is the voice of Headless Heroes
– remixers ruffle the feathers of Au Revoir Simone
– Melanie Garside returns as Maple Bee
– lost Gershwin tunes brought to life by Victoria Hart
– Loreena McKennitt gets festive, again
– Martha Wainwright and others cover Leonard Cohen, again
– Madonna lashes out at Sarah Palin
– Canadian artists raise environmental awareness pre-election 

* * *

Having toured her autobiography-as-performance art show ‘Paradoxical Undressing’ (which, it appears, will eventually come out as a book), Kristin Hersh brings her latest project, The Shady Circle, to London in November. A follow-up of sorts to her Appalachian folk song collection Murder, Misery & Then Goodnight, The Shady Circle is basically just Kristin, an electric guitar, an amp and songs and stories galore.

Curious? Well, we’ve had a root around the internets and found a lovely live recording of a house concert in which several Shady Circle songs were performed – ‘Willie Moore’, ‘Waiting For The One Train’, ‘Children Oh Children’, ‘Dusty Road’ – as well as a few Kristin/Throwing Muses originals. And the best bit? It’s free and legal to download. Get part one here and part two here.

London’s The Borderline plays host to The Shady Circle on November 23rd.

* * *

If you haven’t yet become acquainted with the supremely talented Alela Diane, whose 2007 album The Pirate’s Gospel was deservedly hailed as a masterpiece, then another opportunity is waiting in the wings. Alela is the voice of Headless Heroes, a new covers project dreamt up by A&R man Eddie Bezalel (Alice Smith, Mark Ronson) and brought to life by a crack team of musicians.

Billed as a “simply beautiful collection of lost classics and unearthed gems sung with arresting clarity”, The Silence Of Love (out November 10th) is the ensemble’s debut album that tackles bittersweet songs of love and loss spanning 40 years. Classics from Vashti Bunyan, Linda Perhacs and The Gentle Soul mingle seamlessly with more modern selections from Daniel Johnston, Nick Cave & The Bad Seeds and The Jesus & Mary Chain.

Alela describes the project as “pure fun”, adding: “It was quite liberating to just sing! And not worry about it being my record, or it being different from the type of music that I’m used to making…I was able to use all different parts of my voice, from what I do in my own songs, to what I learned while singing in the school choir.”

The Silence Of Love
01 True Love Will Find You In The End
02 Just One Time
03 Here Before
04 Just Like Honey
05 To You
06 Blues Run The Game
07 Hey Now Who Really Cares
08 Nobody’s Baby Now
09 North Wind Blew South
10 See My Love

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trouser press: cat power, frida hyvönen and more

in today’s trouser press:
– more Cat Power covers lurk at the Dark End Of The Street
– Frida Hyvönen goes Wild on new album
– preview the new Jolie Holland album in full
– ex-Pipette Rose announces debut solo single
– Electric Proms sign up Sharleen Spiteri for ‘Saturday Night Fever’ tribute
– new album on the way from Amadou & Mariam
– is Duffy on the edge?
– hear Paramore’s new vampire film song
– Tegan & Sara talk about hanging with the ‘bad boys’ of rock
– listen to new Doctors & Dealers songs
– Girls Aloud’s Nicola confronts Chris Moyles
– who thinks Sarah Palin is rock ‘n’ roll?

* * *

Once she wanted to be the greatest. Now she just can’t stop covering ‘em. Cat Power releases a new 6-track EP featuring some of the leftovers from the sessions for Chan Marshall’s second covers album, Jukebox, on December 9th. It comes as a limited edition double 10″ vinyl set in a gatefold sleeve or as a much less exciting clutch of MP3s. There will be no CD issue.

There will no doubt be grumbles that Dark End Of The Street doesn’t feature either her cover of David Bowie’s ‘Space Oddity’ or Cat Stevens’ ‘How Can I Tell You’, short clips from which have soundtracked adverts in the US, but I’m personally quite happy that a studio version of Sandy Denny/Fairport Convention’s classic ‘Who Knows Where The Time Goes’ will finally be seeing the light of day. That and three of the other songs are previously unreleased in any form.

Dark End Of The Street EP
01 Auld Triangle [Pogues cover] +
02 Dark End Of The Street [James Carr/Aretha Franklin cover] +
03 Who Knows Where The Time Goes [Sandy Denny cover] +
04 Fortune Son [Creedence Clearwater Revival cover]
05 I’ve Been Loving You Too Long (To Stop Now) [Otis Redding cover]
06 It Ain’t Fair [Aretha Franklin cover] +

+ previously unreleased

* * *

Eccentric piano-pounding Swede Frida Hyvönen will release her second album proper, Silence Is Wild, in late January 2009. Unless you’re lucky enough to live in the US or Canada and can buy it in November. Teaming up once more with producer Jari Haapalainen, Hyvönen hasn’t reined in her bizarre and sometimes shocking way with a lyric – who can forget ‘Once I Was A Serene Teenaged Child’?. Her raw confessionals and scattershot sexuality have always been her most compelling elements, and it seems that we can expect more along those lines with Silence Is Wild. ‘Pony’ is a rewrite of Smog’s ‘I Break Horses’, while ‘December’ deals with abortion in a way that showcases Hyvönen’s “distinct talent for political and social ambivalence”, to quote directly from the press release.

You could argue that now really is not the time for political ambivalence, especially in the US where the record is out on polling day (November 4th). Which brings us nicely to ‘Enemy Within’, a new song that you can have for free by clicking right here. Okay, so it’s not about George W Bush, but it was too good a tenuous link to miss.

Silence Is Wild
01 Dirty Dancing
02 Enemy Within
03 Highway 2 U
04 London!
05 My Cousin
06 Science
07 Scandinavian Blonde
08 December
09 Birds
10 Pony
11 Sic Transit Gloria
12 Oh Shanghai
13 Why Do You Love Me So Much

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trouser press: sarah mclachlan, shirley manson and more

in today’s trouser press:

– Sarah McLachlan splits with husband, writes new songs about it
– Shirley Manson debuts in Terminator spinoff, records new songs
– Tori Amos writes foreword for Nemi comic anthology
– newly curated all-female Christmas album out next month 
– Nicole Atkins covers Mama Cass, The Doors and more
– former Sneaker Pimps singer Kelli Ali returns
– Beyoncé announces release date for third solo album
– Barbra Streisand and Gina Gershon take on Sarah Palin
– Gabriella Cilmi dominates ARIA nominations
– Estelle up for five MOBOs 

* * *

Sarah McLachlan has revealed that she is separating from her husband of 11 years, Ashwin Sood, with whom she has two daughters. Talking to Billboard.com she said, “I wasn’t planning on saying anything, but it’s gonna come out at some point. I haven’t said anything about it because I’ve been terrified to, but I figure…there’s no good time to say it, so I just said it.”

She also revealed that the two new songs on her upcoming greatest hits album, Closer: The Best Of Sarah McLachlan, directly relate to the separation. New single ‘U Want Me 2′ she says is “about that really uncertain, confusing place at the end of a relationship when there’s no communication or closure, everything’s still up in the air and there’s a lot of anger and sadness. It’s sort of that working through ‘How do we move forward…with some dignity and grace.” The other new song, ‘Don’t Give Up’, she describes as “pretty self-explanatory, basically just a plea to give it another chance and keep trying.”

Closer is released on October 6th in single-disc and 2CD deluxe versions and Sarah hopes to have an album of new material out within the next 2 years.

‘U Want Me 2′

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introducing saint saviour

voice on the verge #18: saint saviour

listen to Saint Saviour on Myspace

Things you think you don’t need but really you do: (1) the world’s biggest teapot; (2) a McCain–Palin fridge magnet; (3) yet another cover of Joy Division’s ‘Love Will Tear Us Apart’. Bear with us on the last one. Better known for parading around stages wearing various spangly outfits and looking terribly relevant glamorously pouting with a keytar as lead singer of The RGBs, Becky Jones has come over all tremulous and sensitive for her debut solo single, out this week on iTunes and as a limited edition 7-inch vinyl. Originally conceived as a choral arrangement and toured around London’s independent cinemas upon the release of Anton Corbin’s ‘Control’, the much-praised cover hits all the right buttons. Matching Charlotte Martin in the earnestness stakes, it’s undeniably beautiful but, to these ears, is actually bettered by the original tracks, ‘Fallen Trees’ and ‘I Like To Hide’, also on the single. Saint Saviour’s agitated trilling works gorgeously in these understated, ghostly songs and mark this solo project out as one to watch. Speaking of watching, check out the video for ‘Fallen Trees’ below and acquaint yourself better with Becky as she answers our questionnaire…

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