"I'm definitely going to be more covered up on this tour!"
It was only a couple of months ago when we stopped by Taylor Momsen's studio to check in on how the actress-turned-singer was doing wrapping up her album. But now, after a couple of setbacks and a brief sick stint, Momsen and her band The Pretty Reckless are ready to release their new record Going To Hell. It's been four years since their debut in Light Me Up, and as Momsen herself puts it, a LOT has changed since then. What, exactly? Besides branching out into directing, expanding her writing, and costume design (NBD), there will be some unexpected changes this time around. More clothing, for starters...but get the complete lowdown from Momsen here.
Do you do your own stage makeup?
Oh yeah. We don't have a pre-show routine or makeup artists or anything...that's too fancy. I just do my makeup, put my clothes on, have a whiskey and go. I mostly just use whatever black eyeliner I can find at CVS. I'm really not that picky.
Why did you decide to cover up this time around?
I'm not a kid anymore! [laughs] I just want it to be more about the music.
Going To Hell. (1:30 Track Album Preview)
Track album preview)
You were sick for a bit! How are you doing?
I'm doing much better...I've never lost my voice before, so it was so scary. I had to communicate with text messages and writing stuff down on notebooks, and it was awful. But I'm better now and can't wait to get back on tour.
We need to talk about your new music video for "Heaven Knows," since it's awesome. How was it, co-directing?
It was great. I don't like to go into too many details because I like the viewer and listener to interpret it themselves--it's all in there. We actually had to film it twice, though. We went to Miami and shot it, and then flew to LA and then went back...so it took a bit. I definitely have a vision and I want to see it through, whether it's the music itself or the video, so I'm very much a part of it.
Since you're about to leave on tour, what can everyone expect?
Our performances are all about the music--there is no hype thing. This isn't a pop show, with lights and sets and stuff. It's good because it doesn't take much for everyone to get pumped up, the songs do it for us.
What about your outfits?
They're all custom-designed by me and one-of-a-kind pieces. The cross logo is definitely at the forefront. Again, if I have a vision, I like to see it through. You'll have to wait and see what they look like, but I'm going to be a lot more covered up on this tour.
We came to visit you in the studio this summer, and now Going To Hell is about to come out. Are you stoked for everyone to finally hear it?
Yeah, it was quite the process to make this record [laughs]. It's the type of album that is meant to be listened to front to back; it's almost a concept record. There are some common themes that emerge when you listen to the whole thing, which doesn't happen if you just have a bunch of pop singles.
What was the writing process like?
I don't write in the studio; there are two songwriters in the band and we write everything on the acoustic guitar and work it out. The order of the songs is very important; it's almost a concept record in a way. We weren't writing intentionally for this to happen, but it just turned out that way...everyone will just have to wait and see for themselves.
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"Going To Hell" Album: Is Magnificent!
The band's sophomore effort titled "Going To Hell" is a compilation of all things bad ass. Musically, the album is top notch, but much attention revolves around the theme and racy cover image involving Momsen's nude backside.
So let's forget about her image for a second and talk about the album.
Fans who loved The Pretty Reckless' debut, "Light Me Up," will notice a slight change in sound. "Going to Hell" is much heavier and in your face, but the songs are still as catchy. The themes remain the same in the sense that lyrically the songs are adult oriented. However, the difference here is "Going to Hell" is a much more polished album than "Light Me Up." The songs are tighter, the lyrics seem more poetic, and Momsen's range has evolved into one of the great voices in music.
The rest of the members in the band deserve a lot of credit as well - Ben Phillips, Mark Damon, Jamie Perkins - as they stay under the radar giving Momsen all the spotlight but showing up on each track playing their parts perfectly.
At times, "Going to Hell" will make you pump your fist with songs like "Follow Me Down" and "Going to Hell," chill in a rocking chair with ballads like "Burn," or bob your head to tunes like "Why'd You Bring a Shotgun to the Party?" and "Fucked Up World."
Whatever the case, after listening to "Going To Hell," you'll probably want to take a shower or choke a priest. Whatever you decide, I'm sure Taylor Momsen won't care. And why would she? She's a motherfucking rock star!
"Going to Hell" is easily one of the best albums of 2014.
Track By Track Review
Going To Hell will be released March 18, 2014.
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