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Dum Dum Girls 9 (2011)

Guest Playlist: Dum Dum Girls

Dum Dum Girls returned only this year with their new album, Too True. Initially, writing for the record started in the summer of 2012, a period which songwriter, Dee Dee Penny, found difficult. The writing process – a seemingly lonely and trying time for Dee Dee -  took its toll, as after months of writing it seemed that she would never complete that album. Speaking of the time in an open letter, she claims that relentless touring left her voice battered; “a pale spectre of its former self”.

In this broken state, there appeared to be no end to the anguish of an unfinished album. However, with time Dee Dee was able to disassociate herself from the emotional damage. Drawing inspiration from the works of Rimbaud, Baudelaire, Plath, and singers Patti Smith and Lou Reed, Dee Dee was able to realise that the songs weren’t finished. She became besotted with the notion of desire as muse – the Surrealist manifesto embedded in her psyche – and focused on finishing the collection.

Listening to Too True, this influence is felt. There is a darkness that envelopes the record, a moodier tone that permeates the song writing. Songs like ‘Lost Boys and Girls Club’ play up to stereotypes, but with a sincere and raw quality, transporting you to a place of modern despair.

With this in mind, we asked Dum Dum Girls to collate a playlist of the tracks that have influenced and inspired them. But first here’s the video for ‘Lost Boys and Girls Club’:

1. STRAWBERRY SWITCHBLADE – “WHO KNOWS WHAT LOVE IS”

“A perfect example of how lovely Rose McDowall’s and Jill Bryson’s harmonies were … it’s a good song to sit in the park with; especially nice trumpet lead.”

2. SOFT CELL — “SEX DWARF”

“Fantastic for all the obvious reasons, but also happens to be the best BPM for running.”

3. OPAL — “FELL FROM THE SUN”

“I knew the Pale Saints cover first, and when I started getting into Opal was so pleasantly surprised to hear it in its original form.  It’s somehow both straight and dozy.”

4. PALE SAINTS — “BLUE FLOWER” (SLAPP HAPPY BY WAY OF MAZZY STAR COVER)

“Quite the song praise toward these related groups.  Great song and another gorgeous version — Ian Masters sounds like an angel and the heavier electric parts work well as contrast.”

5. LUSH — “DE-LUXE”

“No one else sounds like Lush; that guitar sound, the bass sound, the odd tempo changes … very aptly named band.”

6. COCTEAU TWINS — “HEAVEN OR LAS VEGAS”

“I toured a whole year listening almost exclusively to Cocteau Twins.  Permanent pleasure zone in my brain.”

7. PETER MURPHY – “CUTS YOU UP”

“My kind of pop song.  Dark and catchy.  Particularly love the low string lead and the acoustic guitar and simple strumming pattern (see “Are You Okay?”).”

8. MODERN ENGLISH — “I MELT WTH YOU”

“OK really perfect song here!  One of my favorites.  Smart, romantic lyrics, the best the guitar lead, fantastic visuals!  It was always mesh & lace.”

9. JAPAN — “GENTLEMEN TAKE POLAROIDS”

“Just gorgeous sounds, and the timbre of David Sylvian’s voice is mesmerizing.  I love the slightly discordant pre chorus that resolves into such gentle, pretty chorus melody.”

10. THE DAMNED — “LIFE GOES ON”

“My motto as articulated by a favorite band of mine, who evolved in a way I find inspiring.  Love that staccato guitar bit.”

11. ECHO & THE BUNNYMEN – “KILLING MOON”

“The voice; the song.”

- Alim Kheraj

Too True is out now via Sub Pop. You can buy it here!



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