THEE MERRY WIDOWS
Thee Merry Widows are often credited as the world's first all-female psychobilly act. However the Dypsomaniaxe beat them to the punch by several years. However thee Merry Widows were the first American band to bring together the all-girl formula and the psychobilly sounds of their influences like Demented Are Go and Mad Sin. Add in some elements of Surf and Garage Rock, and you have a uniquely Northern California take on psychobilly.
San Francisco’s all female rockabilly darlings Thee Merry Widows burst on the scene with 2005’s Revenge Served Cold, a 11 song LP with ghoulishly fun tricks and treats; their first album has them paying tribute to their favorite horror schlock films, like The Cramps-inspired “Grave Robbers (from Outer Space)” and “All Of Them Witches,” and psychobilly pleaser “Black Widow.” Although considered one of the first all female pysychobilly bands, Thee Merry Widows have a penchant for garage and surf music that sets them apart from the rest of the pack; listen to the reverb-drenched “Girl Assassins” and you can feel this is surf-y California rock n’ roll, played by ladies in latex, leather, fishnets, and red lipstick.
The album is presented here with bonus tracks originally only available on the European re-release. The bonus tracks include Thee Merry Widows’ homage to kinky dressers, “Fetish Queen,” and the ultimate middle finger to ex-boyfriends, “Suicide Ride.” Thee Merry Widows give another tip of the cap to one of their heroes with a cover of English proto-psychobilly band Demented Are Go’s “Holy Hack Jack.”
The perfect companion music for wanna-be Betty Pages and James Deans, Revenge Served Cold makes you want to light a cigarette, put on a leather jacket, and comb your perfectly coiffed hair. Just make sure you check under the bed for things that go bump in the night.
The 2008 follow up to their first album, Revenge Served Cold, the campy, trampy, foot-stampy The Devil’s Outlaws, is Northern California’s fishnet-clad rockabilly lady rockers Thee Merry Widows’ homage to B-movies and all things ooky and spooky.
This album finds Thee Merry Widows hitting some new high points; the title track’s thumping upright bass sends shivers down the listener’s spine. The cover of Sloppy Seconds’ “I Want ‘Em Dead” is an instant sing-along classic. There’s even a duet with Daniel deLeon of fellow psychobilly fave The Rezurex, “Remember Me.” The slow tempo of “Elana’s Empty Tomb” gives singer Miss Eva von Slut a chance to unleash her inner Glenn Danzig-style wail. From the superb cover art to the American Werewolf in London-inspired lyrics of “The Howl,” everything about this album screams Thee Merry Widows love their exploitation films of the 50’s-70’s. “Theater of Blood” recalls the gory past of the Grand Giugnol, “Varla” is about the big-breasted Russ Meyers heroine from Faster Pusycat, Kill! Kill!. “The Bride” is a retelling of the Bride of Frankenstein from her perspective. “My High Heels” would be perfectly in place in a Quentin Tarantino film.
For fans of the Misfits, the Cramps, or the Meteors, this record is a must have that infuses elements of sunny California surf and garage into the dark corners of horrorpunk and psychobilly. It’s a fun, cinematic ride that only the ladies of Thee Merry Widows could bring to life. Or is it back to life?