I've no intention not to mention
January 17, 2012 12:28 PM   Subscribe

Screaming Females are a 3-person self described "rock/rock/rock" band from New Jersey featuring Jarrett Dougherty on drums, King Mike Abbate on bass, and Marissa Paternoster on guitar and vocals. They're not incredibly famous and they're probably not on the cusp of a string of number 1 hits, but they put on a mean show and they've got a new album in a couple of months if rock/rock/rock should happen to be your thing.

From their facebook page: "We've been a band for 6 years. We used to do everything ourselves but these days a bunch of friends help us out with stuff."

They wrote and recorded their first album in Jarrett Dougherty's attic, and haven't stopped working since then. The first album, Baby Teeth (2006), went out to much success in the local underground scene with no backing from any label big or small.

I'll let their publicist describe the next stage of their career via facebook: "[They] decided their next effort needed a proper studio. The band decided not to utilize normal studio wizardry and instead opted to simply set up their gear and play. Many songs were recorded in a single take and the record saw few overdubs. Through these raw recordings the band attempted to capture a true representation of the louder and faster sound they had developed. Creating this new, deafening punk soon had its consequence. During one practice an irate police officer issued the band a noise violation and insisted they had to consider neighbors who could be trying to watch television. Befittingly, the next album was titled What If Someone Is Watching Their T.V.? (2007) To celebrate the release of this second album the trio embarked on a 70-day national tour, beginning their reputation as one of the hardest-working bands in North America."

The following years have been much the same. Steadily growing tours and occasional TV appearances have given Screamales a new batch of loyal fans through the release of Power Move (2009) and Castle Talk (2010) as well as a number of fun singles, mostly but not entirely original.

A couple of quotes from the Starve the Beast minidocumentary linked earlier in the post under 'mean show':

"Marissa plays guitar like she sold her soul to the devil and then stole it back from him."
"This manager told me I was going to have to jump through some hoops if I was ever going to make it in this business, and I said 'fuck that man, I don't need you.' "
"There's no THE before Screaming Females because individually we are not screaming females. I am not a screaming female, so there's no the. It's a concept."
"I think the crowd chanted for him to play naked."
"Marissa is one of the greatest artists I've ever seen. [...] Flyers, t-shirts, art for the album- all hand made, all done by her."
posted by sandswipe (33 comments total) 21 users marked this as a favorite
There. Maybe they'll get enough fans to play in my state some time.

They also have an associated act called Noun but I don't know the details on that.
posted by sandswipe at 12:34 PM on January 17, 2012 [1 favorite]

They have a really great sound - aggressive, great hooks, well-varied, and raw. I heard about 'em thanks to Ted Leo's tweeting.
posted by entropone at 12:36 PM on January 17, 2012

oh my god, at the end of the "mean show" link, they're playing "i want you back" by the jackson 5.

and it sounds really good.
posted by entropone at 12:50 PM on January 17, 2012

Love it.
posted by bonobothegreat at 1:02 PM on January 17, 2012

posted by stagewhisper at 1:03 PM on January 17, 2012

Marissa plays guitar like she offered her soul to the devil and the devil declined.
posted by DuoJet at 1:04 PM on January 17, 2012 [2 favorites]

I am almost entirely sure I either saw them open for Against Me! or missed seeing them open for Against Me!
posted by griphus at 1:06 PM on January 17, 2012

I saw them open for artic monkeys a few years ago and I dont know if it was the sound, their chops, or their overall lack of interest from the audience but they were not very moving--more like weak and ploddy. Perhaps they have improved! Good overview.
posted by Potomac Avenue at 1:11 PM on January 17, 2012

!! I love this group. I tried to get friends on FB to listen so I could have others to squee with and no one would give them a try. The lead used to draw comics about being on tour. I'm so excited to finally like the band in a Mefi post. Quick, someone tell me how much they suck!
posted by FunkyHelix at 1:18 PM on January 17, 2012

I'm in Jersey, where do they normally play?
posted by brinkzilla at 1:25 PM on January 17, 2012

Skygazer and I caught their show at New York City; I ran into Marissa after the set and told her I liked the act, only to see her stare at me agape. While I stood there wondering why she appeared to be in shock, her bandmates repeated what I had said only seconds before: "He said he bought all our CDs at the (sales) table."
posted by Smart Dalek at 1:29 PM on January 17, 2012 [1 favorite]

By that, of course, I meant ONE copy of the whole catalogue...
posted by Smart Dalek at 1:31 PM on January 17, 2012

Your favorite band... is well-received on MetaFilter. Huh.
posted by knave at 1:31 PM on January 17, 2012 [2 favorites]

Reminds me of the 90s. In a good way.
posted by Jon_Evil at 1:32 PM on January 17, 2012 [1 favorite]

Liking this a lot. Thanks.
posted by Foci for Analysis at 1:36 PM on January 17, 2012

I saw them open for Ted Leo & the Pharmacists in a warehouse in Philly last year. I took a girl up to the second floor to stash beer in the fridge and act super-cool because I knew the operators well enough to stash beer in their fridge, and Ted Leo's right there in the kitchen. The girl I was with was kinda short and Leo says to his friend, "Is that them?" I've been told I look like a young Orson Wells, an old Tony Danza, and a mid-20s Richard Dreyfuss, but I've never been more flattered than when Ted Leo mistook my girl and I for Screaming Females.
posted by The White Hat at 1:37 PM on January 17, 2012 [3 favorites]

I love bands that look unassuming and then they melt your face off.
posted by cazoo at 1:51 PM on January 17, 2012

I saw them play a few months ago. Marissa was drawing something crazy at the corner of the merch table while I think it was Mike did most of the direct customer interaction. One of the guys I went with climbed onstage after the show and talked to her for around ten minutes (enough $1.50 rum and cokes will give anyone a good conversation starter) about influences, technique, gear and other basic guitar talk while I only exchanged a few sentences with each of them. They seemed like a really nice group, Marissa's natural quietness and tour wearyness aside. She didn't engage in a lot of on-stage banter either, but once your playing hits a certain point you really don't need it.

Even if they skipped playing my favorite five or six songs it was definitely worth driving four hours each way to see them live. It has to be one of the tightest performances I've seen in years.
posted by sandswipe at 1:52 PM on January 17, 2012

I saw them play last year in Los Angeles and it was most awesome. Marissa DOES indeed seem like she's possessed when she shreds on guitar, and it's crazy good. Solid live act, a successful outfit from the underground house party DIY scene from NJ. Good stuff.
posted by xtine at 2:01 PM on January 17, 2012

I'm here to say that:

1. I wanna check this out more thoroughly later.

2. Paternoster is possibly the coolest last name I've heard, after Monasterio (Monostereo).
posted by sklero at 2:02 PM on January 17, 2012

Wow hats off to this awesome guitar/vocalist! Sounds a bit like The Cure, Violent Femmes, and Smashing Pumpkins.
posted by Meatafoecure at 2:05 PM on January 17, 2012

I really wanted to HATE this, just for the notion that if you have to invent a name for what your music is, it likely sucks wang, but I swear it isn't half bad. Only complaint is the guitar tone suffers from too many Smashing Pumpkins albums.
posted by timsteil at 2:12 PM on January 17, 2012

I had a hangover that sounds like that.
posted by noaccident at 2:24 PM on January 17, 2012

I forgot where I first heard them, but I've been digging them for a while now. They were opening some shows for The Dead Weather, but when I went to see DW it was Harlem opening instead. I hope I can see Screaming Females live soon.
posted by stifford at 2:28 PM on January 17, 2012

This is great stuff. Really liking Boyfriend, the video for which seems to be a close-up of someone shoveling a hotdog or burrito or something into their mouth.
posted by mannequito at 3:17 PM on January 17, 2012

, just for the notion that if you have to invent a name for what your music is, it likely sucks wang,

Yeah you think that, but about the 16th time some half-assed wannabee journalist who's interviewing you for a local blog or something asks what style of music you play, you just give up and say the dumbest thing you can think of.

Anyway, these guys seem right up my alley and I'm working my way through the links. Nice post!
posted by lumpenprole at 4:21 PM on January 17, 2012

My girlfriend and I crossed the border to see them in Buffalo, NY last year. We bought all four LPs and a hoodie for $65 and Marissa gave us a free poster for spending what she referred to as an "obscene" amount of money. I apologized for downloading all of her albums for free (not sure why I apologized though, the exposure got me out to see them) and she just shrugged.

They're fantastic live. Hopefully Steve Albini helped capture that live sound on the new record.
posted by sngbk at 4:50 PM on January 17, 2012

RE: dumb genre labels.

The rock/rock/rock thing is only how they're classified on facebook. It's in this post because it was the first place I saw them bother to label themselves. I wasn't there so I can't be sure, but I assume they chose rock from some drop down menu, the fanpage system kept asking for subgenres, and whoever made the website just yelled "FUCK YOU I SAID ROCK THE FIRST TIME AND I MEANT IT!" so it's more of a lazy swipe at the hazy concept of modern genre labels than a conscious decision.
posted by sandswipe at 4:57 PM on January 17, 2012

I saw them at MACRocK last year and they really stood out as one of the best bands of the year.
posted by JennyJupiter at 6:09 PM on January 17, 2012

I was friends with Jarrett back at Rutgers and ran into Marissa a few times when I'd be over at his place. She easily has the most unique presence of anyone I've ever met, like if you took the most intelligent, most creative person you know, doubled both of those qualities (she does the band's art, too), mixed that in with friendliness and not-a-hint-of-being-a-dick-about-it, and then gave them the ability to melt your face off with a guitar. She's very petite and usually wears girlish looking dresses, so she looks like a twelve year old girl when she's on stage. It's intense.

Anyway, I've been waiting for them to explode for awhile now, and it's good to see your friends on the blue.
posted by alphanerd at 7:07 PM on January 17, 2012

This great stuff, sandswipe. Thanks for sharing!
posted by vertigo25 at 10:19 PM on January 17, 2012

And BTW… looks like their complete catalog is on Spotify: http://open.spotify.com/artist/3pZ666b6CyO1KGpVYirY0t
posted by vertigo25 at 10:50 PM on January 17, 2012

Their live show is amazing. They are playing MHOW in February for any close people interested. $12 tickets, definitely worth it. Castle Talk is one of my favorite albums. Marissa is like an alien from another planet (in a good way)
posted by zackola at 12:11 PM on January 18, 2012

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