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Faces to watch 2010: Dum Dum Girls

December 29, 2009 |  1:08 pm



Dum Dum Girls offer plenty of warnings to any would-be listeners, at least if one is to judge by the songs available on the act’s MySpace page. The band's choice of covers -- the Rolling Stones' "Play With Fire" and GG Allin's "Don't Talk to Me" -- aren't the most open-armed of songs, and the group cements its don't-mess-with-us strut with an original titled "Jail La La."

Led by Kristin Gundred (a.k.a. Dee Dee), the L.A.-based band taps an old-fashioned sort of rebellion, one where a leather jacket and black tights are enough to signal outsider status. Sleazy, scruffy and fast, Dum Dum Girls will release its debut, "I Will Be," on March 30 via Seattle's Sub Pop.

Containing 11 songs and running just under 30 minutes, the album was produced by Richard Gottehrer, who shares a songwriting credit on the '60s hit "My Boyfriend's Back." That's no coincidence.

With a name that references songs from Iggy Pop and underground heroes the Vaselines, Dum Dum Girls has a sound that falls somewhere in between the early punk of the former and the slacker haze of the latter. Melodies take shape out of a gloomy guitar drone, as if they just sort of accidentally happen, and Gundred's vocals stay behind the beat and buried under the riffs.

It's a matter-of-fact, deadpan delivery, and when the backing harmonies kick in, Gundren sounds as if she's channeling the ghosts of girl groups past.

-- Todd Martens 

More Faces:

Faces to Watch in 2010: Architecture

Faces to Watch in 2010: Theater

Faces to watch in 2010: Classical

Faces to watch 2010: Scott Amendola

Faces to watch 2010: The Living Sisters

Faces to watch 2010: Ke$ha

Faces to watch 2010: The Soft Pack

Faces of 2010: Entertainment (film, music, TV, new media)

Photo: Lauren Dukoff