Screaming Females at Madame Lou’s on April 12, 2023 in Seattle, Wash. | photo by Chris Chappell @gettingwarmer

Chris Chappell Photo Column—Screaming Females

Aug 12, 2023

I always thought that Screaming Females was going to be one of the underground’s best-kept secrets. But after hearing them live on KEXP and seeing them rip a sold-out show in Seattle that night, I think the age of Screamales is upon us. For the longest time, I thought Screaming Females would be a band’s band. One of those groups that receives universal acclaim from their peers and critics but never quite find a broader audience. I no longer think that is the fate of the Females.

“Brass Bell,” the single off their latest album Desire Pathway, is infectious in an unforeseen way. It’s a commandeering, riff-driven track, laced with singer Marissa Paternoster’s signature flowing wails. The chorus is mysteriously catchy. The first time I heard the song, I immediately liked it, but it wasn’t until I found myself singing, “I live in a brass bell and, it’s too loud, it’s too loud,” that I realized how much the song was a banger. Backed up by one of the tightest rhythm sections in the game, “Brass Bell” is the perfect song to recruit new devotees into the Cult of Screaming Females. It’s a justice that this song is getting radio play and reaching new audiences if only so the band sticks around for years to come. Who else will shred our collective faces off if not the Screamales?