Since forming in Rhode Island in 1980-whatever Throwing Muses have been alt rock royalty and their uncompromising frontwoman/leader Kristin Hersh has been an indie rock legend setting the world to rights ever since.
It’s almost impossible (and probably kind of offensive) to condence Hersh and Throwing Muses complicated history into a brief introductory paragraph. That said, in a nutshell, it goes something like…
At 16 Kristin was involved in a car accident that dramatically changed how she hears music (she describes it as being like ‘a kind of possession’), she formed Throwing Muses (originally Kristen Hersh and the Muses) with her step-sister Tanya Donnelly, they (along with the rest of the band Elaine Adamedes and drummer Becca Blumen who were later replaced by Leslie Langston and David Narcizo) released their first EP in 1984, subsequently signed to 4AD records and toured with their friends the Pixies.
Kristin has (pretty openly and publicly) dealt with at different times being diagnosed with schizophrenia and later bipolar disorder. You can read about some of this in Kristin’s book Rat Girl, which is essential reading, kind of like the alt rock version of Ghost World or a way gnarlier Lena Dunham. The Muses have had a rocky time negotiating their fierce uncompromising creativety within the music business, at times down right rebelling against their former long-time label Warner and according to Hersh being left pretty much flat broke.
Throwing Muses have just been out on the road proving they’re still a killer force live and have finally released an epic new album Purgatory/Paradise, a 32-track record accompanied by a 64 page book of essays. As far as I’m concerned Throwing Muses is Kristin Hersh and Kristin Hersh is Throwing Muses, so when the Muses came to town I went to have a chat with her about their latest record and being shitty…
Click through for the interview.