I was first introduced to Thelma and the Sleaze in the basement of a house show venue in downtown Nashville. From the first song of their set to the last note, they had the crowd’s full attention and energy. They proceeded to put on a show ending with a pit of people and instruments on the floor. It was gritty, loud and powerful–all things a punk show should be.
The four Nashville natives–LG, GiGi, Chase and Baby Angel–are pure rock ‘n roll.
“Living in the South it’s hard to not feel inspired by the music,” the band said in an email interview with Sidelines. “Bands we wouldn’t have thought about coming up in riot grrrl and “bitch rock.” After a while we started hearing ourselves in Black Oak Arkansas, Blackfoot, ZZ Top, Lynyrd Skynyrd, and started finding new sounds and tones there.”
Their sound abides by no rules, as heard in their provocative lyricism. Their influences come from all over.
“We are still collecting them,” they said. “I think that’s the best part of making and hearing music constantly. Just finding new soul and experiences to draw from.”
Originally an offshoot of members Baby Angel and LG’s former band, Trampskirts, the group has been together since 2012. They’ve released four EPs since then, most recently Heart Like a Fist in September 2014. Their last tour took them to venues, DIY and otherwise, across the country this past year, including a show at SXSW in Austin, Texas last month.
“It’s amazing to meet creepers in so many different places,” they said of their affectionately nicknamed fans. “The road is really gratifying. It’s awesome knowing people care about what you’re doing and are excited when you come to their town.”
Look past the rough exterior of these local rock stars and one can see their passion and creativity.
“We are writing songs about our experiences,” they said. “We hope people draw what they want from it.”
As for the rest of 2015, the band has quite a few things to look forward to.
They will travel to Joshua Tree, California to record their first full-length record with Dave Catching of Queens of the Stone Age, Earthlings, Eagles of Death Metal and Mojave Lords.
“It’s a really peaceful and expansive place to get to create music,” they said. “We couldn’t be more excited.”
You can catch Thelma and the Sleaze in Nashville at Dino’s on April 25 before they head out to tour on the West Coast.
You can learn more about Thelma and the Sleaze on their website, thelmaandthesleaze.com.
To contact Features Editor Dylan Skye Aycock, email firstname.lastname@example.org