From styles that range from sweet, sad pop to in-your-face blistering punk rock, there are plenty of talented female musicians showing off their skills in bands all around metro Phoenix. We made a list of 10 local bands to check out that are fronted by women. Here they are, in alphabetical order. You’re welcome.
1. Battered Suitcases
Led by lead singer and bassist Sharon Case, who also handles the same duties in longtime local punk outfit Labor Party, Battered Suitcases deliver lyric-driven rock ’n’ roll. The band’s name comes from writer Jack Kerouac’s iconic novel, On the Road, and the band is equally committed to crafting gritty poetic statements that reflect life’s often harsh realities. Not only is the band fronted by a female, they’ve got Jess Case on drums, and she’s nothing short of a maniac — hitting hard, well, and with passion. Another Labor Party founding member, Frankie Case, handles the propulsive guitar work.
2. Carol Pacey & the Honey Shakers
Carol Pacey is an East Coast transplant who fell in love with the Arizona landscape and decided to get a band together. She and her Honey Shakers play a very spunky blend of folk, rock, and alt-country. Her voice is effortless and glides like silk through any of the specific styles she chooses to embrace. There’s a sense of power and comfortability that permeates the band’s offerings. Whether it’s an up-tempo stomper that gets you dancing, or a low and slow ballad, the band as a unit is strong.
3. Cherie Cherie
When you feel like getting into a hypnotic state, it's a good time to listen to Cherie Cherie. The band is made up of longtime members of the local music scene, including Lonna Kelly, who’s been in various bands and also recently released a critically acclaimed solo record called Take Me Home Superman. Her voice draws you into a lull and the folky psychedelic sounds surround you, enveloping you into a trance as you follow the tunes to their end. Songs like “Down, Down, Down” are reminiscent of the loveliest Velvet Underground’s moments.
4. The Declaimed
When it comes to local hardcore band The Declaimed, the phrase “punk as fuck” is completely applicable and utterly true. This four-piece band comprising longtime friends cranks out fast and vicious tunes that blast you in the face. Whether the song is about world issues or personal stuff, this team isn’t sugarcoating a damn thing. Lead singer Jen Holiday might be small in stature, but her voice is giant and brutal. At live shows, you’ll see she means business as you watch her neck veins nearly explode throughout the performance.
5. Doll Skin
These four young ladies have been playing together for about three years now, forming when a couple of them were barely teenagers. The group delivers solid and concise anthemic rock songs that are sprinkled with some pop, punk, and a little glittery glam. Not long after they started, they garnered a healthy dose of attention. One person that took a long look was Megadeth bassist and co-founder Dave Ellefson. He liked Doll Skin so much that he took them on tour and recently released their debut album, In Your Face, on his record label.