Marnie Stern Returns, Declares "Female Guitar Players Are the New Black"

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Local guitar heroine Marnie Stern, whose great 2008 LP This Is It and I Am It and You Are It and So Is That and He Is It and She Is It and It Is It and That Is That seems like it came out way more than two years ago (though we don't miss the title), is finally ready to release a follow-up. The mercifully named Marnie Stern is due October 5th from Kill Rock Stars, according to Pitchfork, who also have the record's kaleidoscopic first single, "For Ash," available for download. It's pretty great. There's also a tracklisting circulating, featuring an appetizing song called "Female Guitar Players Are the New Black"--Marissa Paternoster would surely agree. Maybe all us potential interviewers can just agree to shed that question about girls in rock before she gets asked it fifty more times? [Pitchfork]

The Inexplicable Surfer Blood Marnie Stern Connection, Plus An Apology

Surfer Blood got some swagger! When last we saw these kids in town, we had them figured for CMJ-style human sacrifice; the next day they played the second or third set of an appalling 12-show run and called the Voice out for doubting them. Then they were dazed kids; now they hold things down over New Year's in NYC and get welcomed with open arms by resident guitar queen Marnie Stern. Plus their show at the Bowery Ballroom with the Drums next week is already sold out. And their ace Astro Coast isn't even out till January 19th. So here is where we apologize for predicting that they'd break up back in October. It was more love and concern than casting aspersions but when you're wrong you're wrong. [BV]

SXSW 2009: Getting Off on the Good Foot with Marnie Stern and Heartless Bastards


Heartless Bastards (Radio Room)
Marnie Stern (Club De Ville)
SXSW Wednesday Afternoon, March 18


Erika Wennerstrom's bandmates give her a tremendously wide berth onstage, three grizzled gentlemen crowding demurely to our far right as she holds court on the left, the sort of blast radius you'd give an M-80 or a mountain lion. The Heartless Bastards leader is a bellower indeed; "Can't do the things I used to do/'Cause I feel old," she demurely howls at the onset of the Austin-by-way-of-Ohio band's 2:30 p.m. set at Paste magazine's afternoon fete (say what you will, but that mag is fuckin' resilient), and she sounds old too, or wiser, wearier, more wizened -- Beth Ditto with less grandstanding, PJ Harvey with even more Southern discomfort.


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