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Red Aunts To Make Raucous Return Trip To The Big Dipper

Fri., Sept. 29, 1995

Brett Guerwitz, owner of L.A. independent label Epitaph Records (the label for Offspring and Rancid), has built his empire with a horde of testosterone-fueled punk bands, including the one he played in, Bad Religion.

With the exception of reissuing L7’s first album, Epitaph hadn’t signed a single female group until recently. After doing time on various independents like Sympathy for the Record Industry and Hell Yeah!, L.A.’s Red Aunts jumped aboard the wealthiest independent label in the country earlier this year.

The result: the label’s most snotty, brash, blistering and raw effort in some time with “#1 Chicken.”

The Red Aunts come to Spokane Wednesday to play the Big Dipper. Now as part of Epitaph, the four aunts reaped numerous benefits. For one, attendance at the band’s shows has grown massively, which means that the 4-year-old punk band can call the shots on tours.

Joining the aunts on stage are pals Tanner and the Cheater Slicks.

In addition to playing larger shows, the members of the Red Aunts have fattened their wallets a bit. They were the subject of an article in Rolling Stone and received airplay on MTV.

What does Angel think about being on MTV? “It’s rad; I love all that,” laughed the singer/guitarist. “There’s no way ever that we would compromise our music for anything. We’re doing exactly what we’ve done all along. We’re on MTV and we’re doing exactly the same thing.

“A lot of people ask me, ‘Oh, you’re in the glossy magazines and that’s like a sellout,”’ she continued. “Put us on the cover of Rolling Stone; we would love it. I want everyone to hear our music. It’s not poppy or mainstream or anything like that.”

The Red Aunts’ strength is in churning out unkempt music that’s reckless, sarcastic, carefree, rude and volatile, as good punk rock should be.

There’s nothing slick or polished about this foursome and that’s fine.

Also, the fiery unit, rounded out by bassist E.Z. Wider, drummer Cougar and guitarist Sapphire, doesn’t waste any time making its point. “#1 Chicken’s” 14 songs clock in at a startling 23 minutes.

Hitting the stage before the Red Aunts is San Diego trio Tanner, which features three former members of Fishwife.

Much has been touted about the city’s ripe crop of fearless and fierce guitar bands. Yet, none of the good ones, like Tanner, has gotten its due. And we’re not talking about Stone Temple Pilots or Lucy’s Fur Coat.

On its debut album “Ill Gotten Gains,” Tanner shells complexly arranged, passionately executed, edgy post-punk. Drive Like Jehu will immediately bow to this trio.

Noise at 9:30 p.m. The cover is $5. Bring your ID.

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