February 10, 2012

Song Review: Screaming Females' "It All Means Nothing"


For over a half decade now, Screaming Females have gained a reputation as underdogs of the independent circuit despite a road warrior discipline, a ferocious female-fronted punk growl and the guitar shredding talents of frontwoman Marissa Paternoster. Four albums later, the New Brunswick, NJ trio shouldn't have any trouble making a more immediate universal impact when they unveil Ugly on April 3rd via Don Giovanni Records. The Screamales headed into Chicago's Electrical Audio to record their latest LP with acclaimed sound engineer Steven Albini and while they aren't interested in talking about it, it's tough not making mention of this fact after hearing Ugly's first listen, "It All Means Nothing." The track has been a staple during their live set for quite some time, but with so much love for it already being voiced by their fans, friends and fellow musicians, it makes sense that the band's first high-profile single bridges a cozy DIY ethic with big-sounding success. Much like Cloud Nothings AS-approved sophomore LP Attack on Memory showed us, whatever happens inside the walls of Electrical Audio has a tendency to make already great-sounding bands sound even better. Paternoster's vocals stands out here the most on "It All Means Nothing" as they flail wildly over chugging bass lines and knife-edged guitar contours, introducing listeners to a different side to their sound that's both unleashed yet meticulously ravaging. With Karen O currently on a pseudo-hiatus in light of her female contemporaries penchant to push out ear-pleasing pop, Paternoster on the other hand is -- alongside with her two male cohorts -- proving not to be concerned with "gender roles" in the genre. If anything, Screaming Females' "It All Means Nothing" boldly asserts them as one of the last bands standing with any inkling of an idea on what it is to simply rock.

Screaming Females - "It All Means Nothing"

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