Rock like the Hulk and bite like a crazy Courtney Love

By Garth Paulson

“The long running theory was that if kids listen to angry, violent music they’re going to go all bug-fuck sociopathic and start sniping people off from the top of the MacKimmie Library tower. I think that if I didn’t have angry, brutal music to listen to and play I’d be a lot angrier and violent,” says Terese Lanz of local hardcore band Kilbourne.

After only a quick listen to their debut album, Measure of Health, it should quickly become apparent that the girls of Kilbourne know a thing or two about anger. Consisting of ten songs of aggressive post-punk glory, Measure of Health, plays like a crash course in the productive release of violent energy. “I think I like angry music because I’m happy,” muses Terese’s sister Francesca, “It’s so sad.”

Formed from the remains of another local raucous band, Honeyrocket, the Lanz sisters quickly swept up the ashes, got back to basics and started a musical assault in the form of a trio. Joining the Lanz sisters to complete the trifecta of Kilbourne is teenage drumming phenom Steffani MacKichan.

“We found Steff because she put out an ad saying she was a 15-year-old Christian jazz drummer,” Terese laughs. “We thought, oh that sounds perfect, lets just e-mail her right now.” Though a background in jazz might be about as far removed from Kilbourne’s sound as one can get MacKichan seems right at home with the boisterous Lanz Sisters. “Being the youngest is awesome, they baby me, I still love jazz drumming, I live for that, but rock is so much fun, its heavy and angry,” she admits.

With all this talk of anger it would be easy to lump Kilbourne in with the stereotype of pissed off female rockers but the band insists that is not the case.

“I swear every interview I’ve ever done was like, ‘you’re really angry, you must hate men,’ when in reality no two things could be further from the truth,” says Terese, alluding to a problem many all-female bands run into. In an industry dominated by men, women are often not given a fair chance, judged moreso on their looks, outfits and outlooks than the quality of music they produce.

“I resigned myself a long time ago to the fact that everyone is going to take a gender angle, which is fine,” says Terese. A quote on their website deals with this problem specifically, stating: “We’re all girls but we consider that incidental to our music, not vice versa.”

“I think that really sums it up right there, because most girl bands are girl bands, not bands that are girls. They buy the outfits first, not the instruments,” explains Terese. “The image of being a girl band is what most bands are hung up on, that was pretty much the last thing on our minds.”

Francesca interjects, “When we started out we thought it was fun to dress up but now its just so much effort, we’d rather just focus on the music.”

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