Rock bands with female leads?
November 30, 2005 1:39 PM   Subscribe

YourFavouriteBandDoesn'tSuckFilter: Your recommendations for "good" rock-genre bands with female lead singers?
posted by PurplePorpoise to Media & Arts (144 answers total) 5 users marked this as a favorite
 
Sleater Kinney
posted by driveler at 1:40 PM on November 30, 2005


She only does about half the vocals, but Neko Case's work in the New Pornographers is awesome (her solo stuff isn't so bad either).
posted by jodic at 1:42 PM on November 30, 2005


Rainer Maria
posted by fionab at 1:44 PM on November 30, 2005


Blonde Redhead
posted by fionab at 1:45 PM on November 30, 2005


I like Rilo Kiley. Good band.
posted by gfrobe at 1:45 PM on November 30, 2005


Yeah Yeah Yeahs.
posted by muddgirl at 1:46 PM on November 30, 2005


Sleater-Kinney.
posted by keswick at 1:47 PM on November 30, 2005


Boss Hog
posted by PinkStainlessTail at 1:48 PM on November 30, 2005


Kay Hanley, the lead singer of the '90s band Letters to Cleo, fronts a good band of her own now, but they don't tour much.

The Donnas' last album, Gold Medal, rocked.
posted by nicwolff at 1:48 PM on November 30, 2005


The Avatars.
posted by klangklangston at 1:48 PM on November 30, 2005


New Pornographers

Ditto. I second Rilo Kiley as well.

There's also Frente from Australia, and, depending on how loose your definition of rock is, Camera Obscura (twee/jangle-pop).

Some of the Magnetic Fields songs are sung by a woman.
posted by ludwig_van at 1:49 PM on November 30, 2005


Janis Joplin. Sass Jordan. The Divinyls.
posted by ZenMasterThis at 1:49 PM on November 30, 2005


Slits, Cat Power, Fiery Furnaces, Bellrays, Sons & Daughters
posted by drobot at 1:52 PM on November 30, 2005


TheStart.
posted by luriete at 1:53 PM on November 30, 2005


Rilo Kiley, Citizens Here And Abroad, and Metric
posted by mathowie at 1:54 PM on November 30, 2005


Bell. Goodness/Hammerbox.
posted by jessamyn at 1:55 PM on November 30, 2005


Sass Jordan

Really? I could get technical and say she's not a "band", but I have to go for taste on this one. While I'll let everyone have their own preferences, has she really done anything worthwhile since the 90's (or the 80's - when was her first album?)?

I mean, just let me know. Maybe I missed something.
posted by GuyZero at 1:55 PM on November 30, 2005


They might be more ska or "pop punk" than rock, but Dance Hall Crashers have two female vocalists. The Gathering has their moments, as well, and I love The Breeders' album "Last Splash." Rusted Root and Poi Dog Pondering both feature female vocalists at times, but not primarily. (My favorite Rusted Root song, "Food and Creative Love" might have what you are looking for.)
posted by headlessagnew at 1:57 PM on November 30, 2005


The Muffs.
posted by misteraitch at 1:57 PM on November 30, 2005


Tegan and Sara
posted by eatdonuts at 1:57 PM on November 30, 2005


Detroit Cobras. Rachel Nagy is divine.
posted by pedantic at 1:58 PM on November 30, 2005


Most of the above bands suck. Some that don't: Siouxie & the Banshees, X-Ray Spex, Au Pairs, Cocteau Twins. Obvious: Blondie.
posted by keatsandyeats at 2:00 PM on November 30, 2005 [1 favorite]


Heartless Bastards. Excellent. Dunno if you're looking for feminine sounding lead singers, but Erika Wennerstrom isn't one.
posted by cramer at 2:03 PM on November 30, 2005


Peaches?
posted by fionab at 2:05 PM on November 30, 2005


Kittie. an all female heavy metal band.
and don't forget Hole, they were great once.
posted by andrewzipp at 2:06 PM on November 30, 2005


Most of the above bands suck.

And then you recommend the Cocteau Twins. Weird.

Tokyo Jihen
posted by PinkStainlessTail at 2:06 PM on November 30, 2005


I like Rilo Kiley, fronted by Jenny Lewis.
posted by LouMac at 2:07 PM on November 30, 2005


Bic Runga - although I'm not sure if she fits into the rock category.

If you don't mind Spanish lyrics you might like to check out Amaral. They rock.
posted by nomis at 2:09 PM on November 30, 2005


The Spinanes, Bikini Kill / Le Tigre, Pretty Girls Make Graves...

Do the Pixies count?
posted by drpynchon at 2:10 PM on November 30, 2005


Cat Power, Nina Nastasia, Feist, Stars, Metric.
posted by jon_kill at 2:10 PM on November 30, 2005


Portishead, Out Hud, Mates of State (half the time), Jem, The Go! Team.
posted by tayknight at 2:10 PM on November 30, 2005


Here are some I like (restricting this to current artists):

Rilo Kiley
The Dresden Dolls (not exactly rock, I think they call themselves "Brechtian Punk Cabaret")
The Raveonettes (one of the two leads is female)
Morningwood
Eisley
LeTigre
posted by justkevin at 2:11 PM on November 30, 2005


The Raincoats
posted by PinkStainlessTail at 2:12 PM on November 30, 2005


- Sleater-Kinney. Again.
- Sonic Youth, I guess, although I personally don't usually dig the tracks on which Kim Gordon does vocals.
- Stereolab.
- The Breeders
- The X-Ray Spex!!!
posted by ITheCosmos at 2:13 PM on November 30, 2005


mazzy star/hope sandoval
stereolab

bands in which some songs are sung by girls:

the pixies
sonic youth
silver jews
magnetic fields
postal service
handsome family
posted by booknerd at 2:15 PM on November 30, 2005


Not necessarily rock, but Morcheeba is good. They've been said to be "trip-hop" but I only have a newer CD, and it sounds more bluesy-pop than trip-hop.
posted by sian at 2:16 PM on November 30, 2005


Oops, and double comment, but Of Montreal has a couple of songs featuring a woman singer. Highly recommend.
posted by sian at 2:16 PM on November 30, 2005


Plumb

The album "candycoatedwaterdrops" is awesome.
posted by vjz at 2:17 PM on November 30, 2005


Thanks everyone (keep 'em coming, newcomers)! Looks like I've got a lot of leads to try out.

I'm kinda surprised that nobody has mentioned Shirley Manson of Garbage (my "guilty pleasure").
posted by PurplePorpoise at 2:18 PM on November 30, 2005


Keep thinking of more: Royal Trux (but not RTX, that's reconstituted shit)
posted by PinkStainlessTail at 2:21 PM on November 30, 2005


The Rondelles
Melt Banana (screamy Japanese, but still "rock-genre"?)
The Breeders
Belly
Sonic Youth
Hole (depending on how nostalgic you're feeling)
PJ Harvey
X Ray Spex
posted by unknowncommand at 2:21 PM on November 30, 2005


Bettie Serveert!
posted by hamfisted at 2:26 PM on November 30, 2005


curve
posted by crush-onastick at 2:26 PM on November 30, 2005


Well, if you include bands where some songs are sung by a female lead then you have to mention Yo La Tengo.
posted by arco at 2:28 PM on November 30, 2005


sian: Moorcheeba of the latest album, and Morcheeba of previous albums are, in effect, different bands - new lead singer and change of musical direction...

nomis: How have you come across Amaral? Beyond being one of few in a crop of current Spanish bands who don't suck, I kinda have a pretty big crush on Eva... ;-)

And my answer to the question would be to look towards goth rock - some good female singers in bands like Evanescence, Nightwish and Within Tempation, although they're all guilty to some degree or other of leaning too heavily on the operatic side of female rock vocals when they think they can get away with it. Still, Amy Lee's vocals on Evanescence's cover of Korn's "Thoughtless" pretty much makes up for it all...
posted by benzo8 at 2:33 PM on November 30, 2005


Elastica
OOIOO (sorry, weird Japanese again)
Cub (still Japanese, much less weird)
posted by unknowncommand at 2:35 PM on November 30, 2005


Stars
posted by BlzOfGlry at 2:37 PM on November 30, 2005


Early Heart.
posted by Aknaton at 2:38 PM on November 30, 2005


Komeda
posted by sad_otter at 2:43 PM on November 30, 2005


Don't forget Mia Zapata and The Gits, dammit!
posted by Aquaman at 2:43 PM on November 30, 2005


Arg! It's "TheGitsMovie.com", after all.
posted by Aquaman at 2:44 PM on November 30, 2005


Some great suggestions, but this:

Melt Banana (screamy Japanese, but still "rock-genre"?)

reminded me of a recent gig that I went to headlined by these guys. The main support were a band where a female shared vocal duties, "Help, She Can't Swim!". I would highly recommend them.

I also heartily second the X-Ray Spex and Dresden Dolls recommendations, along with a tentative suggestion of The Distillers - I really enjoyed their first two albums.
posted by frowned at 2:44 PM on November 30, 2005


I presume Garbage are thought to suck then? ;)
posted by badlydubbedboy at 2:45 PM on November 30, 2005


Yeah, definitely Shirley Manson. Garbage is awesome, and puts on a great live show.
posted by BuddhaInABucket at 2:46 PM on November 30, 2005


OOIOO (sorry, weird Japanese again)
Cub (still Japanese, much less weird)


Cub is from Vancouver, actually, though twee enough to seem Japanese, for sure.

OOIOO is amazing.
posted by keatsandyeats at 2:51 PM on November 30, 2005


The new Darkness album is good.
posted by First Post at 2:51 PM on November 30, 2005


If you're open to bizarre rock music: Deerhoof.
posted by agropyron at 2:52 PM on November 30, 2005


'The Owls' come to mind.
posted by kickingtheground at 2:53 PM on November 30, 2005


First Post writes "The new Darkness album is good."

Didn't really read the question, did you? I mean, I know Justin's overly-enamoured by his falsetto, and he's got long hair, and wears tight jumpsuits and everything, but do you really think a girl would let her teeth get into that state?
posted by benzo8 at 2:57 PM on November 30, 2005


Cub is Japanese? I had no idea...

My reccomendations:
All Girl Summer Fun Band (and their predecessors, The Softies, who are much softer)
The Fiery Furnaces
Folksongs for the Afterlife
Shonen Knife (discussed here)
and Deerhoof, though it looks like agropyron beat me to them.

Wikipedia also has lists of all-woman bands and female singers which might help you out.
posted by bubukaba at 2:57 PM on November 30, 2005


some early Liz Phair?
some Chicks On Speed?

dammit, of course Cub's from Vancouver, I'm going insane
posted by unknowncommand at 2:58 PM on November 30, 2005


Team Dresch.
posted by Triode at 3:01 PM on November 30, 2005


Probably some repeats, if so, consider it a seconding:

ELECTRELANE! ELCTRELANE! ELECTRELANE!

Melt-Banana.
Sleater-Kinney.
Portishead (trip-hop but what's the difference, everything is rock).
Blonde Redhead.
The Fiery Furnaces.
The New Pornographers.
Sonic Youth.
posted by panoptican at 3:03 PM on November 30, 2005


Also, Nagisa Ni Te.
posted by panoptican at 3:04 PM on November 30, 2005


I like The Organ.
posted by edlundart at 3:05 PM on November 30, 2005


Oh! How could I have forgotten Arch Enemy!
posted by bubukaba at 3:05 PM on November 30, 2005


bjork
posted by bjork24 at 3:07 PM on November 30, 2005


Visqueen. Catchy punk pop. Rachel does vocals and guitar. I went to a show and helped her carry her amp to the van.
posted by 6550 at 3:08 PM on November 30, 2005


has she really done anything worthwhile since the 90's (or the 80's - when was her first album?

The criteria were: "good" rock-genre bands with female lead singers

Nothing said about WHEN. Sass Jordan's album "Racine" showcases great rock-genre singing technique.
posted by ZenMasterThis at 3:09 PM on November 30, 2005


Many of the above, plus:

Kleenex/Liliput
My Bloody Valentine (about 40% female vocals)
posted by lisa g at 3:10 PM on November 30, 2005


Kittymonkey
The Cathy Richardson Band
posted by FlamingBore at 3:11 PM on November 30, 2005


Erase Errata (totally rules)
Liliput
Komeda (named my cat after them)

stopping now. deep breaths.
posted by unknowncommand at 3:11 PM on November 30, 2005


Furthermore,

Park Ave
The Coral Sea
Jessamine
Major Keez and Her Highness
Mazzy Star
Mirah (she plays with a band at least)
Stereolab
posted by panoptican at 3:13 PM on November 30, 2005


Off the top of my head, before reading the thread:

Heart
Pretenders
Breeders
PJ Harvey
Concrete Blonde
Shonen Knife
Garbage
posted by Rubber Soul at 3:20 PM on November 30, 2005


And if we count Portishead, we gotta get Massive Attack in there. And Hole too.
posted by panoptican at 3:23 PM on November 30, 2005


Massive Attack never had a female band member. Like many of the "collective" bands of their day, they had tracks fronted by guest vocalists, but if a question about female-led rock bands can include answers that are male trip-hop bands with female guest vocalists then I guess anything goes!
posted by benzo8 at 3:37 PM on November 30, 2005


Sinergy. And yes, Arch-Enemy's good but they're very heavy and you won't even know it's a female vocalist.
posted by Wolfdog at 3:41 PM on November 30, 2005


Moloko
posted by PinkStainlessTail at 3:42 PM on November 30, 2005


Cowboy Junkies, the best album is the Trinity Sessions.
posted by wheelieman at 3:43 PM on November 30, 2005


As seen on Metafilter: http://www.thechalets.com/
posted by cowmix at 3:49 PM on November 30, 2005


If we're having Massive Attack in there, then we really should have Tricky (the albums Maxinquaye and Vulnerable), and Martina Topley-Bird's solo effort (Quixotic).

And since we seem to have a wide definition of rock, might I suggest Mike Oldfield's albums with Maggie Reilly singing (try Discovery and Five Miles Out).

benzo8: I first heard about Amaral from a German friend, who discovered them while he was in Spain studying Basque...
posted by nomis at 3:49 PM on November 30, 2005


'The Owls' come to mind.

But not 'Owls,' a sort of Cap'n Jazz reunion-cum-total sausage fest.

Anyway, I'll avoid bands who've been mentioned here, but try
  • Swans
  • Múm ("Rock" only in the Best Buy CD department sense of the genre)
  • Velvet Underground (Mostly the first half of The Velvet Underground with Nico, but Mo Tucker sang some songs on later albums)
  • Mirah
  • Regina Spektor
  • Sarah Blasko
  • Bunnygrunt
  • Scout Niblett
  • Camera Obscura
  • Slumber Party
  • Cocorosie
  • Life Without Buildings

posted by electric_counterpoint at 3:52 PM on November 30, 2005


Kind of tangential, but is anyone familiar with the 70s all-female band Fanny? I'd read about them in a book about women in rock, and the author felt that Fanny's guitarist was one of the best rock guitarists ever.

I've never been able to find any samples of their music, so if anyone can point me in the way to some mp3s or CDs, I'd be very happy.
posted by luneray at 3:58 PM on November 30, 2005


Adult., Erase Errata, the Breeders, Blonde Redhead, Melt Banana - people have already covered most of the indie groups I'd mention. If you like metal, Madder Mortem, Acid King, Black Lodge, and Forty Days Longing are all worth checking out.
posted by ubersturm at 3:59 PM on November 30, 2005


Some people have very strange notions of "rock genre". Portishead? Bjork? Massive Attack? Cowboy Junkies!?

I can't belive nobody has mentioned L7 yet.

And I know she's a bit, er, of an acquired taste, but Courtney Love is the definitive rock genre female lead. Shame on so many MeFites for overlooking her.

Heart and T'Pau are good examples of "soft" rock, which I guess comes close.

And there I draw a blank. Siouxie Soux and Shirley Manson are awesome, but they don't strictly front "rock" bands (at least by my definition).
posted by londonmark at 4:02 PM on November 30, 2005


Flyleaf. The singer goes from sweet-cute-girly to wow-she-means-that-shit-angry-metal. They're really good, heavier stuff. I like them a lot.
posted by biscotti at 4:07 PM on November 30, 2005


(warning, embedded audio in my link)
posted by biscotti at 4:08 PM on November 30, 2005


panoptican, did The Coral Sea add a female to their roster? They're great, but I think you are mistaken.
posted by mds35 at 4:11 PM on November 30, 2005


Wow, that's crazy. I've never checked out their site or anything. And I only have one of their albums their new album on the recommendation from a friend. I always thought the lead singer was female though. Same thing for Antony and the Johnsons. MetaChat revealed the truth about them to me though.
posted by panoptican at 4:18 PM on November 30, 2005


Man I can't believe nobody's mentioned Vixen yet. They broke down all the walls for other female led bands like Poison and Warrant.
posted by any major dude at 4:21 PM on November 30, 2005


Stars

Oh yeah, and Broken Social Scene, too, although neither is strictly female-fronted. Also Mates of State and Mirah.
posted by ludwig_van at 4:23 PM on November 30, 2005


I always thought the lead singer was female though. Same thing for Antony and the Johnsons.

Heh. But with them, that's sort of the point.
posted by ludwig_van at 4:24 PM on November 30, 2005


Oh, and Arch Enemy's another metal band with a female vocalist. Bardo Pond, if you enjoy psychedelic/space rock. Broadcast does indie rock. Trying to go for bands where the vast majority of the vocals are female [so bands like the Swans or Sonic Youth wouldn't count, since Jarboe and Kim Gordon aren't the only/main singers.] I'm very certainly missing quite a few, but I'm tired.
posted by ubersturm at 4:25 PM on November 30, 2005


The Kills

The Paybacks

The Sneaker Pimps
posted by sophist at 4:32 PM on November 30, 2005


His Name Is Alive (Indie, some pop-ish songs)
The Soviettes (punk)
Superchic[k] (Christian girl-power punk, but their first album is a guilty pleasure)
Aislers Set (some songs; sounds a lot like Belle & Sebastian)

+whatever-ing Broken Social Scene, Regina Spektor, and Sleater-Kinney
posted by kyleg at 4:33 PM on November 30, 2005


Veruca Salt
Garbage
No Doubt
La Oreja De Van Gogh
posted by limeonaire at 4:36 PM on November 30, 2005


If you like seething and angry: shannonwright. Listen to a couple of mp3s here.

She's absolutely kickass live, too.

A local SF band that I want to marry: Giant Value. Yummy candy pop goodness.
posted by missmobtown at 4:36 PM on November 30, 2005


Holy crap, how did no one mention the best of them all?

Patti Smith.

If you want to know where to start, there's always her best album, Radio Ethiopia.
posted by koeselitz at 4:42 PM on November 30, 2005


Dresden Dolls!
posted by Coax at 4:44 PM on November 30, 2005


Ladytron and Chicks on Speed are top groups. I also vote for The Breeders and Peaches. Closer to home, though, Magic Dirt are an Australian rock group with a female rocking it up front and Spiderbait are also Australian with a female doing about 40% of the lead vocals.

Has anyone mentioned L7 and Babes in Toyland yet though?
posted by sjvilla79 at 4:45 PM on November 30, 2005


The Anniversary is a favorite, many songs feature a female lead and those that don't tend to include strong female back-up vocals.
posted by cior at 4:45 PM on November 30, 2005


I'll second Electrelane, The Detroit Cobras, Blonde Redhead, and the Bellrays. I'll add Come, Thalia Zedek, The Now Time Delegation (same singer as Bellrays), Bardo Pond, Scrawl, The Gossip.
posted by Manhasset at 4:55 PM on November 30, 2005


The Mekons & The New Pornographers. Both have female co-lead vocalists. The Mekons sing very mournful, punk-influenced political country (if that makes sense; what's better is that they're British--not even inherently country singers!). Their albums from the 1970s are much more raw & punk-sounding. The most "pretty" or immediately accessible album of theirs is Journey to the End of the Night.. The New Pornographers are composed of former members of Zumpano + Neko Case. I like both their albums, though their first (Mass Romantic) is the most catchy to me.
posted by soviet sleepover at 4:55 PM on November 30, 2005


Nikka Costa. She's kinda like a cross b/w Janis Joplin and Lenny Kravitz.
posted by archimago at 4:58 PM on November 30, 2005


Immaculate Machine has one male and one female lead singer on most of their songs.
posted by Johnny Assay at 5:03 PM on November 30, 2005


So So Many White White Tigers, Dengue Fever, Tracy + the Plastics (though that depends on how far you stretch "rock" and "band"), Afrirampo, Antena, boa (the British pop band), God Is My Co-Pilot, Josephine Foster and the Supposed (she also does solo stuff), Polysics (m/f split)...
posted by hototogisu at 5:04 PM on November 30, 2005


oh, i don't think anyone mentioned enon yet. they're one of my favorite bands and the girl has a fantastic voice. she sings on almost all of the tracks and they're definitely straight up rock. i would recommend high society or hocus pocus as far as my favorite of their albums.
posted by booknerd at 5:10 PM on November 30, 2005


I third Metric.
posted by awesomebrad at 5:14 PM on November 30, 2005


HEllo?!?!?!

I can't believe no one has mentioned the great
LUSH
as well as Janis Ian, Juliana Hatfield and Margo Guryan.
Some of the elitists might poo poo this one, but Sheryl Crow is also consistently solid for me.
oh, and also erasure.
posted by stavx at 5:16 PM on November 30, 2005


Most of the main ones have already been mentioned, but I would throw out controller.controller.

And like, eighth Sleater-Kinney, Metric, The Pretenders, and Rilo Kiley.

soviet sleepover: The New Pornographers? Have three albums. Twin Cinema came out this year. Neko Case doesn't sing on as much of it, but it's pretty good.
/nitpick
posted by SoftRain at 5:18 PM on November 30, 2005


and also Helium.... THe lead singer Mary Timony has forged her own solo career with a few releases as well.
oh and I almost forgot the Communards.
posted by stavx at 5:19 PM on November 30, 2005


Nobody mentioned X?
posted by furiousthought at 5:21 PM on November 30, 2005


Martha and the Muffins.
posted by Evstar at 5:21 PM on November 30, 2005


Donna the Buffalo
posted by euphorb at 6:12 PM on November 30, 2005


now that i'm in front of my itunes library...

5,6,7,8's (japanese rock)
discount (oldie, but goodie pop punk)
uh... and someone mentioned that bjork isn't really rock, but the sugarcubes certainly are.
and, yeah yeah yeahs.
posted by booknerd at 6:22 PM on November 30, 2005


more old Björk and friends: Kukl...
posted by hototogisu at 6:25 PM on November 30, 2005


The Gossip are pretty good.
posted by fshgrl at 6:29 PM on November 30, 2005


Most of the ones I was thinking of have been mentioned, but here are a few good ones from a few years back. Shannon Wright's earlier band Crowsdell is pretty good in a 90's rock kind of way. There was a local SF band called the Trashwomen that played dirty garage / surf rock which I recommend to all you Yeah Yeah Yeahs fans, if you can manage to track down a Trashwomen album you can then throw out your Yeah Yeah Yeahs albums and your roommates will thank you. A lot of people seem to really hate Free Kitten, but I think they're enjoyable (it's a Kim Gordon side project). I liked Mocket a lot, too (they're similar to Helium, without the girly voice).

More recently, Kaito plays some good noisy pop, and On! Air! Library! has good electronica-inflected, sample-heavy, spacey rock, they're like the Bardo Pond you don't have to be on mushrooms to like.
posted by whir at 6:59 PM on November 30, 2005


carmina piranha
posted by JeNeSaisQuoi at 7:06 PM on November 30, 2005


The Pretenders, Portishead, X-Ray Spex, Siouxsie and the Banshees, The Cranes, Queen Adreena, PJ Harvey, Royal Trux, Elastica, Stereolab,... Christ, stop me someone.
posted by Decani at 7:35 PM on November 30, 2005


Breeders/Amps/Kelley Deal 6000
Detroit Cobras
Yeah Yeah Yeahs
Joan Jett (her first album is SO ON)
Peaches
Boss Hog
PJ Harvey
HEART <3 br> Suzi Quatro
Bow Wow Wow
.Adult
Wanda Jackson
Stereo Total
Deerhoof
posted by sluggo at 7:47 PM on November 30, 2005 [1 favorite]


a whole damn bunch of those were submitted by ibeji - but she strongly disagrees with my inclusion of Adult. Noted for the record.

Carry on!
posted by sluggo at 7:51 PM on November 30, 2005


Nikka Costa
Apples in Stereo (not always female vocals)
Pizzicato Five
Cibo Mato
Royal
Emiliana Torrini
Innocence Mission
10,000 maniacs
The Cardigans
Louise Goffin
Sam Phillips
Combustible Edison
Elastica
Kim Fox
Puffy AmiYumi
Dressy Bessy
The Sugarcubes
The Sundays
posted by nimsey lou at 7:51 PM on November 30, 2005


I can't believe it took about a hundred posts for someone to mention Patti Smith. Shameful.

Almost as bad - no one has mentioned Ani DiFranco.

Reaching a bit more, and trying not to dupe:

Tegan and Sarah would count - very solid freak-girl-rock, they play well beyond their age I think. Jale ws good as well way back when - their one album got caught up in hype but it was pretty solid. Michelle Shocked hasn't rocked much on record, but when she does watch out. Weeping Tile rocked, and though lead Sarah Harmer is less rock in her solo career, in her old band she was great (stil is, just not in this kind of 'rock' sense).
posted by mikel at 8:10 PM on November 30, 2005


Antigone Rising. Almost country-rock...what the Eagles might have been if they'd been all female.
posted by lhauser at 8:31 PM on November 30, 2005


Looks like nobody mentioned Sahara Hotnights. Straight-ahead rock & roll all-female band from Sweden.
posted by philscience at 8:37 PM on November 30, 2005


More:

Rezillos— '80s punk-pop (think X-ray spex)
The Hard Lessons— Italian garage rock meets Lucinda Williams country
The Nasty Facts— Fantastic new-wavey punk (Rezillos like)
Verbena— Their first album is stoner rock gold. Not so much their other stuff.
Eleventh Dream Day— Yo La Tengo with more Mekons, less Sonic Youth
Bush Tetras— Post Punk bounce
ESG— Post punk funk
Stereo Totale— French pop
Robotnika— Same as above, + russians
+/- — Girls and boys do indie pop
The Sirens— Girls do glam covers
The Kills— Boy girl blues duo
Viki— Noize girl
The Come-ons— Garage fun
Ko and the Knock Outs— Same singer, different band.
Nashville Pussy— Loud raunch
Jucifer— Bass and drums husband and wife. Awesome sludge.
Young Marble Giants— Roller rink punks.
The Scars— Jesus and Mary Chain meets the Cramps somewhere on 4AD.
Saturday Looks Good To Me— Phil Spector meets King Tubby for early work. Later stuff kinda boring.
The Black Forest Girls/ And Spiders— Two bands with nearly the same people; country-ish plaintive rock.
Shonen Knife— J-rock bubblegum
Supersnazz— Fast punky fun
Atmosphere— Great bassy rock from NY.

Further, Hototogisu's recommendations are REALLY GOOD.
And Enon's best album was Believo, The Gossip are good live but suck on album, you should own at least one Pretenders album and one X album already (the first of each), His Name is Alive is INCREDIBLY hit and miss, Patti Smith's best album is Horses (which has just been reissued), and you can always email me to get more.
posted by klangklangston at 8:37 PM on November 30, 2005 [1 favorite]


Lunachicks

Voluptuous Horror Of Karen Black
posted by mds35 at 8:39 PM on November 30, 2005


Felonious Bosch.

(self-link -- I am in the band but merely the bass player -- Katy Thomasberg is the best singer I have ever worked with + she writes dark wonderful lyrics.)
posted by omnidrew at 8:45 PM on November 30, 2005



posted by kirkaracha at 9:13 PM on November 30, 2005


Les Rita Mitsouko
Throwing Muses
50 Foot Wave
Plasmatics/Wendy O. Williams
Vice Squad/Beki Bond(age)
Os Mutantes
The Dagons
Lita Ford
The Runaways (w/Joan Jett, Lita Ford)

Oh, and Diamanda Galás rocks hard, but she's not really rock (shoot me)
posted by al_fresco at 9:22 PM on November 30, 2005


Kittie.
posted by majick at 9:28 PM on November 30, 2005


"Killing Heidi" (from australia)
posted by Radio7 at 9:42 PM on November 30, 2005


If we're having Massive Attack in there, then we really should have Tricky (the albums Maxinquaye and Vulnerable), and Martina Topley-Bird's solo effort (Quixotic).
Yes Yes Yes - these too!

Also, I vote Hole, Portishead and Dresden Dolls.
posted by Radio7 at 9:48 PM on November 30, 2005


Mazzy Star/Hope Sandoval
Kathryn Williams
Poe
posted by afroblanca at 9:48 PM on November 30, 2005


oh, I'll second Kaito, but if you end up with a bunch of minimal house, try again for "kaito uk"...
posted by hototogisu at 10:13 PM on November 30, 2005


controller.controller if you're in the mood for dancepunk; the EP (History) is better than the album.

the newer Cardigans albums (yes, the band that did Lovefool.) took a considerably different tack. the second to last album (Long Gone Before Daylight is almost alt-country) whereas the newest (Super Extra Gravity) is pretty much a rock album.
posted by heeeraldo at 10:32 PM on November 30, 2005


Pat Benatar
Voice of the Beehive
The Go-Go's
Aimee Mann
ABBA (some of their stuff is rock)
Letters to Cleo

Already mentioned, but Blondie is my personal favorite.
posted by rfs at 10:50 PM on November 30, 2005


Rasputina
posted by edgeways at 10:55 PM on November 30, 2005


I've been a huge fan of Garbage since they came out -- their first two albums are admittedly rather better than their last two, though. They have an astonishing collection of B-Sides, arguably it's some of their best work. Not simple to track down, though.

Lush is a very strange mix of genres. They are indeed cool, though.

I'm probably the only person here who knows of them, but Autumn is surprisingly good and their entire album's been online for years. How It Came To Be This Way and Desert Winds of Jezebel are particularly good.

Lesse, who else:

Theatre of Tragedy (at least, their Assembly Album) is pretty good. Pat Benatar's "Gravity's Rainbow" album is probably her best, but is a PITA to find.

I want to bring up Hooverphonic, but I'm sure they're off topic.

Yeh. Evanescence is good stuff.
posted by effugas at 12:01 AM on December 1, 2005


The Go Gos are awesome. Ignore their inconsequential reputation and buy the first album.

Also, if you like Mazzy Star, you'll love Opal. Almost the same band, but when Hope Sandoval started screwing their guitarist, they kicked the old female singer out of the band...
posted by klangklangston at 6:15 AM on December 1, 2005


I'm more a metalhead, but if dig into the more Metal (yeah, that's all one kinda amalgam of a genre there) you can find some amazing stuff. A quick dig into my collection and I find the following (some have male co-leads though):

Alas (death music with operatic vocals)
Amaran
Arise from Thorns/Brave (Arise became Brave)
Beseech
Evanescence
Flowing Tears
Lita Ford
The Gathering
Kittie
Lacuna Coil(The Band Evanscence wishes they could be)
Leaves Eyes
Lullacry
MacBeth (Though only their first CD is really good)
Meldrum
Nightwish (Also with the operatic vocals)
Operatica
Operatika (Unsigned and self published)
The Provenance
Sirenia
Stream of Passion (Excellent Prog-metal-rock band)
Theater of Tragedy (The older albums are more rock/metal, the later bleed towards techno)
Trail of Tears
Tristania
Viperine

Aaaand that's all I've got right now....
posted by Ikazuchi at 6:53 AM on December 1, 2005


Might be a bit heavy for your tastes, but Made Out of Babies not only has a pretty sweet handle, they rock hard too.
posted by theinsectsarewaiting at 6:57 AM on December 1, 2005


Floor Jansen of After Forever is my favorite singer, male or female, any genre.
Michelle Loose of BRAVE is my second favorite singer, male or female, any genre.

Um, actually, now that I'm actually reading the responses, I wholeheartedly second Ikazuchi. (Hey Ikazuchi, we should hang out. I am amazed someone else has heard of Brave - are you in the DC area? Going to the January 14 show?)

Also:
Delight
Epica
Tapping the Vein
Within Temptation
posted by mike9322 at 7:18 AM on December 1, 2005


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