When’s the last time you had your ass kicked by a kick-ass all-girl bubblegum rock band? Well, if your answer to that is “never” or “I don’t remember,” let’s rectify that right now, shall we? Please do welcome the supergroup The Coolies! Featuring Kim Shattuck (The Muffs, Pandoras), her BFF Melanie Vammen (The Pandoras, The Muffs), and their bud Palmyra Delran (The Friggs), they’ve just released their kick-ASS debut EP, Uh Oh! It’s The Coolies, and it sounds exactly like it should sound. We wrangled a few moments of their time from their hectic daily schedule of being AWESOME to answer a few fun questions. Enjoy!
You can buy their record here: https://thecoolieswcr.bandcamp.com
The Coolies, as I have described them, is what The Archies would have sounded like had Betty and Veronica fired the boys and stole Cherie Currie. Would you agree with that assessment?
Kim: I prefer Joan Jett!
Melanie: Kim & I have actually played with Cherie Currie. I’d have to say no. Joan Jett maybe more likely.
Kim, I chatted with you for Big Takeover a few years ago. I remember you saying that you and Melanie initially bonded over your shared love of the same bands. I know you mentioned that you loved the 70s bubblegum and rock, and to me this sounds like you’ve finally indulged that sweet pop craving in a way you haven’t done for your other projects. Was fulfilling that desire part of the reason for forming the band, or did the sound just come along organically, developing on its own?
Kim: I loved the sixties stuff! I bonded with Melanie on the fact that we are twins separated from birth! I’m a huge fan of Melanie! We formed the band not because of the sweet pop but because of Palmyra Delran saying coolie about Paula Pierce’s naked butt!
Melanie: We all love similar music. What we created on our EP was just us making the music we love true to our hearts.
How was it writing with Melanie again? I’m guessing aside from your Pandoras stuff, it’s the first time you two have written together since the very early days of The Muffs.
Kim: We never wrote in the Pandoras because Paula Pierce was kinda a dictator frankly, but I love writing with Melanie and it’s the first time since we wrote “Eye to Eye” together! And I wrote a song with Palmyra too!
Melanie: We loved it!
Who’s drumming for you ladies? Is it that new guy in the Muffs?
Kim: Palmyra did it! She rules for talent. Roy McDonald did two! He’s no slouch for talent himself!
Melanie: Our badass Palmyra is on drums!
Palmyra: Yeah! I always love it when I get to play drums! Roy McDonald is one of my all time fave drummers!
You recorded “Blueberry Crumble” with Little Steven on Theremin. When you got him in the studio, did you make him do his best Silvio Dante?
Melanie: Palmyra asked him and filmed it!
Palmyra: Stevie is up for anything! I think he laughs more than Silvio!
Speaking of that song, I feel sorry for whoever the subject is of that song. Have they heard it yet?
Kim: Probably not! He’s dead to me.
Melanie: Aww everyone has a Blueberry Crumble in their life!
Palmyra: Friendship is like following a recipe. You gotta practice and let it bake, but once it’s burnt, it’s burnt…
What’s cool about this is that the record’s also a benefit for ALS Association’s Golden West Chapter, which I sense that Kim’s heavily involved with, because of her family history of the disease. What does this organization do, and how do they help patients and families?
Melanie: We’ve all been affected by people we know that have to endure this horrible disease. They’ve been doing research with patients and families to find a cure. They’ve also been doing all sorts of trials and stem cell research but they just aren’t there yet.
Palmyra: We’re committed to bring awareness and raising money to research treatments and find a cure.
With the allure of a new Muffs record coming along, is The Coolies a summertime fling, or are there future plans afoot?
Kim: The Muffs new one comes out on Omnivore this fall, and I am super proud of us for doing this! Thanks for asking about it! I love working on making music and I have been working hard for the last couple of years for tons of music to be released! The Coolies is near and dear to my heart and I have fun with these amazing chicks! I’m so proud of the Coolies, which matters to me so much!
Melanie: Definitely more Coolies to come! We’re loving this!
Palmyra: Why stop now!?!