Report: Girls Gone Metal; Female Bands Shake Up A Genre Once Ruled By Males

Brad Burke of the Journal Star reports:

The terms Matt Bahan uses to describe the band KITTIE are, in a word, intense.

"Intense," in fact, is one of those terms. As are "blood-curdling," "crazy" and "pure, screaming, bloody metal." That's why Bahan, the morning show host and program director for rock radio station WIXO-FM 105.7 "the X," courted the Canadian quartet to play the station's Nutcracker V concert on Friday at Peoria's Exposition Gardens. KITTIE will co-headline with the Chicago band SOIL, which shares KITTIE's raucous sound and attitude.

Just about the only thing they won't share come Friday is the Expo Gardens bathroom. SOIL is an all-guy group. KITTIE's members are women.

Surprised? Don't be. Heavy metal, long viewed as a boys club, these days features a strong female presence that will be on display locally in the coming weeks. KITTIE's gig at the Nutcracker comes shortly before metal band

FLYLEAF, led by vocalist Lacey Mosley, opens for DISTURBED on Dec. 18 at the Peoria Civic Center.

The trend doesn't stop there. From the murky rock of EVANESCENCE and LACUNA COIL — fronted by Amy Lee and Cristina Scabbia, respectively — to the Swedish death metal outfit ARCH ENEMY, led by frontwoman Angela Gossow, women are taking center stage in heavy music.

"The girls are out there kind of like going, 'Hey, we can rock just as hard as the guys,'" said Bahan. "I think they looked at the guys kind of laugh and poke fun, like, 'Well, this is a guy's genre and women are not allowed,' But I think heavy metal and rock radio has been missing the female presence, and ... the guys and the girls alike both will welcome women coming back into the fold with open arms if it was creative and different."

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