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The Gossip

The Gossip takes a less-is-more approach to rock and roll. This ultra-stripped-down trio makes classic-sounding garage punk with nothing more than one big dirty guitar, rackety drums, and tough bluesy female vocals. The band is originally from Searcy, Arkansas, but it should come as no surprise that they call Olympia, Washington home, because their sound is derived in equal parts from Washington garage bands of the '60s like the The Wailers and The Sonics and from Washington riot grrl acts of the '90s like Bikini Kill and Bratmobile. Add just a touch of Southern voodoo gospel and you've got The Gossip: a lean, mean music machine. Just listen to the swampy guitar and tough unpolished vocals of "On the Prowl," from The Gossip's self-titled debut seven-inch, and you'll feel like you're in a moldering garage, inhaling the sweet smells of mildew, dust, sweat, spilled beer, and cigarette smoke. Be assured: you'll be hearing plenty more of this Gossip.

Following their debut on K Records, The Gossip fit neatly into the Kill Rock Stars lineup, where in rapid succession the trio issued three albums of blazing, bluesy grrl-punk. Undead in NYC on the noble Dim Mak label, captures the gutty visceral intensity of a Gossip show at the Knitting Factory. "So we know that there's a bunch of garage rock bullshit going on right now," says singer Beth Ditto with Arkansas twang. "For the record, Gossip are not garage rock, we are punk." You betta believe it.