Marnie Stern shreds, but when you hear how great her songs are, that's almost besides the point. A late bloomer to the rock world... She released her first album on Kill Rock Stars, In Advance of the Broken Arm, in 2007, when she was thirty-one years old. But that's besides the point too. The point is that Marnie Stern, with drummer Zach Hill at her side, is a real progressive punker, making music that warbles your mind and kicks your ass... but makes you feel good too. Within her music she quotes Marchel Duchamp, Allen Watts, Back to the Future, and Mark Twain with equal ease and applies finger tapping with such a coolness and familiarity that people who show off that stuff just look silly in comparison...
Her latest album, the self titled Marnie Stern, is a bit different than her previous two releases, delving into a deep emotional core that causes the album as a whole to swell into more "song-y" sort of manners--- though the drumming of Zach Hill and Marnie's persistent playing keep the record in line with her other two releases. It's definitely a great record.
I was able to interview Marnie about it via e-mail last week.
I feel like "Marnie Stern" ,as an album, is less oriented as a "guitar record" and more about the actual "songs" than the last two records. I mean, I thought the songwriting was great on the last two, but this record seems to center around a more emotional core that wasn't as apparent previously. Was this a conscious decision or did it just end up playing out this way?
I think I would have fallen into those trappings had I been friends with more people who liked to listen to music a lot..or rather, people who actively sought out music that wasn't on the radio. I lived in NYC and so there were a ton of other things to do, so music wasn't as much the focal point as it is for most. I regret it only because I think I would have probably started to play the guitar or drums at a much earlier age.