By at 7:42 AM Friday, July 3rd 2009

 

24 Minutes With Brody Dalle Of Spinnerette

Spinnerette, Interviews

 

Spinnerette centerpiece Brody Dalle has come a long way since her days as the Distillers’ gravel-voiced singer/guitarist, a frontwoman with the balls – and chops – to stare down any man on the strip who thought leather pants and rock music was just for the boys. As the only visible torch-bearer of the rock-chick legacy that Joan Jett tended to through the ’80s (and don’t you dare say Courtney), Brody led the Distillers through three blistering albums and a relentless touring schedule that helped define modern punk, but eventually gave way to the band officially calling it quits in early 2006.

Brody Dalle

After stepping out of the scene for a few years to catch up with her life, taking time out for motherhood and marriage with husband Josh Homme (Queens Of The Stone Age), Dalle has teamed up with her old bandmate Tony Bevilacqua and, with the help of Jack Irons and production wizard/multi-instrumentalist Alain Johannes, put together an album that’s a stylistic evolution from The Distillers and a backhand to the mouth of anyone who previously passed her off as “just a punk chick”.

The new project, called Spinnerette, centers on Brody’s musical vision and features a much wider style spectrum than her previous body of work. In their own words: Spinnerette is the sound of a sweaty black leather glove holding a lollipop’s stick, shoving it into crushed glass before offering you the first lick. If that made any sense, it might be Spinnerette. There is sweetness and there is menace. You will have the desire in spite of the obvious danger.

Check out the band’s latest video for Baptized By Fire, directed by Chris Hopewell:

Get the Flash Player to see the wordTube Media Player.

Celebrating the release of their fantastic eponymous debut earlier this month, Spinnerette has hit the road with an arsenal of new songs – and while they may only be a dozen or so shows into the band’s life, it’s clear that this is anything but a one-off project to test the waters for a Distillers comeback.

Brody gave us a call to shed a little light on life with Spinnerette, the importance of personal evolution and why every kid should start their musical journey with The Ramones’ Rocket To Russia.

Antiquiet: With Spinnerette, you’re playing different tempos and changing it up, giving the song what it’s calling for rather than adhering to the strict punk rock rawness you went for with the Distillers. What brought you to this point?

Brody Dalle: I think that if I didn’t do something different that I’d probably shrivel up and die. You can’t to the same thing over and over. There has to be evolution. Doing the same thing… who wants to do that? Not me. That’s fucking boring. And I was 24 when I made Coral Fang. I was just a kid. It doesn’t mean that I’m not gonna make another punk rock record, it’s just a matter of how you define it. To me, the most punk rock thing right now is fuckin Brüno, you know? That’s the punkest thing that’s about to happen in the whole world.

Antiquiet: Have you seen it?

Brody Dalle: No, I cannot wait though. I’m gonna be first in line. I’m gonna punch people. I’m gonna be there.

Antiquiet: You guys are all over the map with styles on the album. Any particular avenues you’d like to go down next?

Brody Dalle: Yeah, it’s this little thing called folk doom. I’m making it up. I fucking hate folk, but folk doom sounds really amazing.

Antiquiet: Folk doom? Like John Denver meets Cannibal Corpse?

Brody Dalle: (Laughs) Yeah, exactly. Totally, that’s rad.

Antiquiet: Alright I’ll only ask one question about Josh (Homme)… Dave Grohl said something about your husband working with John Paul Jones next… what’s that all about?

Brody Dalle: I’m not at liberty to talk about it…

Antiquiet: Fair enough… I remember reading something Jack Irons (Spinnerette drummer) said a long while back, about all these little living room gatherings people would get together and have – these little acoustic sessions that would blow people’s minds if they knew who were there at the time. If you could hand-pick a group of musicians to put a room together just to work the magic and see what would happen, who would it be?

Brody Dalle: God, I have no idea… there are just too many possibilities. I think the thing that you were talking about earlier, which I’m not supposed to talk about is pretty fucking amazing.

Antiquiet: Really…. what makes it amazing?

Brody Dalle: Just beats and sounds like you’ve never heard before!

Antiquiet: Alright, I won’t push…  so switching gears, there’s no way to stop the leaks and the free traders, so what’s the impact and outlook for a band like Spinnerette?

Spinnerette

Brody Dalle: Well, it’s funny how social networking has kind of destroyed the community a little bit. Everyone turns on their computers and goes to this place that doesn’t even fucking exist, and it kind of trips me out a little bit. But as far as music goes, music has become fast food, and I’m sure (file sharing) has something to do with why it is that way, but I don’t know. Our record never leaked, and it was floating around for two years.

Antiquiet: Two years?

Brody Dalle: ‘Cause noone cared, it was awesome. There’s no such thing as an impact anymore. Nobody’s selling any records. If it was the Distillers days, we sold a hundred, two hundred thousand records in America, and that back then was somewhat of a failure, but now it’s a fuckin’ revelation.

Antiquiet: How do you make your money then?

Brody Dalle: I don’t right now. I mean, I still get royalty checks from the Distillers that are pretty hefty and nice, but you know I pay my band to go on tour. I don’t get paid. I take a cut. So I’m away from my daughter and I don’t get paid… (laughs)… sooo…

Antiquiet: Obviously that’s not sustainable…

Brody Dalle: Right, well I set up my business so it’s more like a partnership, so I’m not a slave to this big conglomerate anymore, and I have artistic freedom. That means more to me than anything else. I don’t really care about selling units because that means more demand and more away time. I’d like to be an artist like Tom Waits where I’ll just make records and occasionally go out on tour. I’ll do it just for the pure pleasure of making records. And if a select few people like them and want to buy them, then that’s amazing. I’m lucky.

Antiquiet: In our review of your show from the other night, I contrasted the trajectory of your career and the structure of what you’ve got going on to Courtney Love, who’s made a complete fucking mess of herself… wait, I hope you’re not friends with Courtney…

Brody Dalle: I occasionally talk to her… “friends” would be pushing it. I don’t know.

Antiquiet: Well, she’s talented, without question, but her batshit reputation precedes her, and there’s a lot of argument over who wrote her songs. That’s on her, but now you’re getting all kinds of shit in that same vein, saying that your artwork looks like something else or that your production sounds suspiciously similar to Queens, whatever the case may be. Does that enter your mind when making artistic decisions?

Brody Dalle: No… I do what I wanna do. I don’t care if there was a half-naked black lady on the cover of the first Queens record? So fucking what? These people are ludicrous. The hourglass is quintessentially female, and that’s why there’s a fucking torso on my cover with a corset.

My production has nothing to do with me. That has to do with Alain (Johannes, multi-instrumentalist member of Queens Of The Stone Age, Spinnerette and Eleven). Alain and Josh have spent a lot of time in the studio together for years, and I’m sure they have a lot of the same techniques.

Antiquiet: You didn’t exactly round up a bar band for the record, either.

Brody Dalle: Right, there’s also the caliber of playing on the record – Alain Johannes, the guy… he’s the best musician in the world, in my opinion. The type of instruments that guy orders off the internet from China and then masters is insane. So I feel like the guitar playing on my record is so good, that if you’re gonna say it sounds like Queens Of The Stone Age, I don’t have a problem with that. (laughs) Because it’s fucking good. My husband didn’t write my songs. He’s never going to write my songs. He asked me for a riff, and a song, recently, but I would never do that because I would get so much shit for it. But hopefully all that’ll go away one day.

Antiquiet: I just saw a screening of a fantastic film called It Might Get Loud that features all these great conversations and intimate moments with Jack White, The Edge and Jimmy Page, and they made no attempt to hide their love for and derivation of the blues greats. You said in recent interviews that you loved Howlin’ Wolf… what do you pull from that style?

Brody Dalle: I wouldn’t even know how to pull from that. That’s all I listen to right now, it’s all I can listen to – his Chess Box collection, it’s like 73 songs. It’s on in my car, on my iPod, my computer, it’s really the only thing I listen to. It’s really comforting.

Antiquiet: What draws you to it?

Brody Dalle: We have dinners and stuff that we put on, and somebody randomly put on some Howlin’ Wolf. It was a song called Down In the Bottom that did it… it’s one of my favorite songs. I dunno, it just makes me feel safe inside. (laughs)

Antiquiet: Thanks for taking some time out for us – one last question: What advice would you give to a kid sitting in his/her room with a guitar and some inspiration, but no idea what to do with it?

Brody Dalle: Go and get Rocket To Russia by The Ramones. Start there. Teach yourself that, because it’s easy as shit, and it’s fun and it’s rad, and it’s a classic.

 
 

Meanwhile, On The Internet...

 
39 comments
  1. Kate says:

    “Folk doom” is kinda how I feel about Impaler.

  2. Spinett says:

    That’s the type of mentality I personally like the most, great interview. I wish them luck.

  3. Joseph Rose says:

    Hmm, not only was the music better before, but she was hotter then too. Sad.

    • fastnbulbus says:

      thats your opinion dude, but wheres your band? why are you lookin at spinnerette interviews? seems your a jealous starfucker.

      • emily says:

        seriously. that’s the problem with people these days, since when does a person’s aesthetic appearance pertain to the music they produce? fuck off

  4. Bullshit on both counts. The Distillers were phenomenal, but this has a hell of a lot more texture/depth.

  5. Skwerl says:

    well texture and depth is nice, but i’ll take coral fang over the spinnerette album most days out of the week. with that said, looking forward to seeing this new band develop.

  6. Coral Fang was brilliant, definitely, but it’s like eating the same flavor ice-cream, start to finish. I find much more listenable duration in Spinnerette.

  7. Skwerl says:

    i could eat a whole cheese pizza by myself.

  8. Lala says:

    I really liked the video, the song took a while to grow on me, maybe the synth chorus, it’s such a strange sound but now I like it and that’s one song (baptized) someone would have to be a fool to say it sounds anything like queens, I dunno what it sounds like, ballzy for sure.

  9. Kate says:

    Fuck I’m hungry.

  10. tng/dharma69 says:

    Wait…did she say she was gonna punch someone? Tho’ not a perfect album to my unimportant ears, Spinnerette hits it pretty well. Do you feel some desert rock vibe?Sure. Do some prefer the baser nature of Distillers? Sure. I prefer this and its tighter composure. Gritty, dirty, snarly punk-girl had her day and now she’s evolved into…punk-mom? I dunno. She kills it with the harmonies; nice counterbalances to her singing voice-and I wasn’t expecting that. Like I wasn’t expecting the poppy-pleasant “Geeking” and “Baptized” (that chorus is ridiculous in a good way). I like it. The album sounds good in my car and it makes the case regarding the lack of female representation in the world of quality female rock. I need that and there’s nearly zero visibility. One of you should write about that. Spinnerette, Version 1. Waiting for V2.0.

  11. Maybe you should write about it… we’d be happy to share it with the world.

  12. Rory says:

    She’s fuckin cool, but despite how many times I listen and try, I cannot get into Spinnerette.

  13. cocknose says:

    Casually using the word ‘rad’ doesn’t score points on a coolness barometer but the album is really good.
    And not to play devil’s advocate but much like Live Through This with musical quality this high I could give a shit who was behind it.
    Personally I give her credit though succubus or not this album is getting lots of play in my car stereo.

  14. Travis says:

    What instrument is that being played in Baptized By Fire?
    You know which one I’m talking about. Pretty cool.

  15. Kate says:

    Cig-fiddle, I think.

  16. Joseph Rose says:

    Coral Fang is to plain Lorenzo & Sons as Spinnerette is to California Pizza with all the toppings.

    Give me plain every time.

  17. Entirely too gay on the Philly/purist humping. Especially with the reference to the shitty CPK place.

  18. Skwerl says:

    california topping-centric pizza is not exclusive to cpk. his point was simple quality beats variety or complexity, and i tend to agree.
    but we do have better tacos.

  19. The loyal defender returns! But don’t forget the burritos…

  20. Joseph Rose says:

    Well yeeaahh, you guys have all the mexicans! You know, aside from the 5 that work at Lorenzo’s.

  21. Skwerl says:

    those are puerto ricans, asshole. freddy would kick your ass.

  22. Reyson Rosas says:

    HAHA BRODY DALLE GRRR EXCELENTE VIDEO MUY MUY TUYO LA CANCION TAMBIEN ME GUSTAO MUCHO ERES UFF DEMASIADO BUENA !

  23. Aerick Ravenheart says:

    I really like Spinnerette, and I love Brody Dalle…but at the same time, I miss the Distillers and would like to see her do another Distillers album as well as keep Spinnerette, it’d make me very happy. And it’s not like othe musicians don’t ever do moe than one band project. For example Corey Taylor(Slipknot/Stone Sour) o even Tim Armstrong(Rancid,Transplants). Anyway, I’m a huge Brody fanatic, I love her, whatever she does.

  24. Dewey Rice says:

    Ive been a huge of Brody Dalle since The Distillers first came out with Coral Fang. Hands down, she is my favorite musician ever. Ive been keeping obsessive tabs since i first heard even the faintest whisper about Spinnerette! And I am throughtly impressed! Even with the realease of the ep and Valium Knights, i still wasnt sure what to expect from the album as a whole. But of coarse, its fucking beautiful. I love the fact that Brody such a talented smart woman, that naturally knows to grow as an artist musically and push her limits. Seeing her in new york this month was a dream come true, even though she had laryngitis, she still sounded great! I recommend the new Spinnerette album to the whole entire WORLD!

  25. hayley says:

    to Travis – i think i heard her say in another interview that baptized by fire was all guitar.

  26. Kyla says:

    fuckin love her way of thinking. Shes real.
    I agree when she says that you cant do the same thing forever. I loved her earlier stuff. Spinnerette is pretty good, there are a few songs I can get into. I’m a fan of her musical talent and just her in general so I’m still going to listen and support.

  27. Mike Skeez says:

    I have the new record on repeat in the car. It took a few spins, but has def. grown on me. Can’t wait to see what Homme and company are cooking up out in the desert!!! REALLY can’t wait for Spinnerette to come tour stateside….multiple Texas dates?…..YES PLEASE!

  28. Ilana says:

    Brody Dalle é maravilhosa e eu realmente tenho uma admiração por ela… Eu sigo seu trabalho independente das mudanças que houve, spinnerette é muito bom… Mas prefiro Distillers <3

  29. Carocker says:

    Can’t do the same thing for ever??? Tell that to the Rolling Stones..Distillers were much better and it was posted on myspace that they are not over just on a brake..while Brody does this Spinnerett thing. Don’t know what that means..but I hope they get back together.. and soon…

  30. sev says:

    i think its amazing, its been years that iv been listening to the same amazing songs, and now this new ep is so frinnin welcome
    WELL DONE BRODY, U CAN TELL THE EFFORT WAS ALL WORTH IT

  31. maryjanesnow says:

    hi johnny if u like brody so much please check out my band http://www.endroulette.com. we have a show coming up in august i would love for u to write about

  32. kerrinandthebullseye says:

    i love brody. distillers gave me the inspiration when i was the kid sitting in my room with a guitar. honestly, i can’t get into spinnerette that much but i respect brody and wish the band luck.

  33. sandougou says:

    The distillers was the best thing she ever done in music

  34. max sorgenstein says:

    i would probably kill myself if it meant going on a date with brody. i want to be er and i want to date her. omg.

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  36. […] While that musical project came along with some great shows and one of Antiquiet’s coolest interviews, no new music was heard from it […]

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