Superchick is living up to its name. Its first four albums have combined for 700,000 copies sold, more than 70 film, television and videogame song placements, and five No. 1 singles. But for a band inspired to empower its listeners, its new album does more than walk the talk… it rocks the talk!
“We’ve always encouraged people to go nuts with their gifts and abilities, but on this album we personally did that ourselves,” says Matt of the band’s latest sonic stunner, Rock What You Got. “There was an instance where Dave did a 100 different guitar takes of one riff ‘til his fingers bled, and Tricia kept singing until her voice gave out. On this album we just went for it!”
Rock What You Got infuses a “rock-o-tronic” sound – an electropunk mash-up of slashing guitars, pulsing keyboards and grit-pop vocals – with enough innovative production to make Tony Stark jealous. In music and message, it’s the Last One Picked hitting a Sid Crosby slapshot; it’s Beauty From Pain tears turning a beast into a prince; it’s Karaoke Superstars turning Average Daves into American idols. It’s the musical realization that you can’t just believe in your gifts; you need to rock ‘em.
“I told the band, ‘Everything we do, I want it to be more,’” says Max, who also produced. “If we are going to be rock, let’s be more rock. If we are going to be punk, let’s be more punk. If we are going to touch metal, let’s really do metal. I just wanted to fire all the barrels.”
In fact, Rock What You Got is loaded enough for three lead singles at different radio formats. The CHR power ballad “Hold” offers a cloud of pianos, violins and electric guitars over which the girls cry out, “I need a hand to hold, to hold me from the edge.” The stirring AC confessional “Crawl (Carry Me Through)” takes a softer yet no less dramatic approach in its prayer for strength, and “Hey Hey” is a rock rallying call with fiery guitar chords, defiant attitude and female gang vocals that challenge, “Why kiss the feet of the people who kick you?”
“It stands true to your traditional Superchick,” says Melissa. “We all stand together, embrace our beauty, encourage each other and feel good about it.”
In making Rock What You Got, Superchick found the best way to rock its own gifts was a return to the indie mindset of its debut. Max explains, “We made our first album without any outside interference so we could try and do whatever we wanted, and that record is fairly creative for that reason. This time around, instead of trying to guess what the market would want, we went back to where we started and did whatever we wanted to do on Rock What You Got.”
Adding to the album’s edge, Superchick wrote the new songs against a backdrop of personal hardship. In the past few years, band members faced painful relationship splits and cancer touched four of their families.
Still, while the last album sought to empathize with listener pain, Rock What You Got is the battle cry to charge forward.
“This album is about empowerment and hope,” says Matt. “Don’t be afraid to cross the lines that people put up to limit you when you know you are better than that.”
Rock What You Got’s message reminds people that Einstein didn’t withdraw when his headmaster said he’d “never amount to much,” and Beethoven didn’t give up when his music teacher called him “hopeless.” These people didn’t just believe in their gifts, they rocked them out!
If Karaoke Superstars introduced the idea of a “One Girl Revolution,” it’s Rock What You Got that proclaims, “The revolution starts when you cross the line.”
In 2013, Superchick announced their disbandment
To anyone who heard our music:
I’d like to say thank you. To the 20,000 people at Parachute in New Zealand, to the kids at the first Lifefest, to all the crowds who sang our lyrics back to us: thanks for helping us tour the world. It was a rare blessing you gave us. You sang our songs on youtube, had our words tattooed on your bodies, included our songs in your summer soundtracks; you humbled us with your gift. You believed we were worth listening to and you made us velveteen rabbit real with your love.
Superchick is closing a chapter. The people you’ve seen on stage are taking a curtain bow. It’s time to go exploring again. Everyone has new stories to write: Tricia has another solo record coming out, Dave is touring with Audio Adrenaline, Melissa started Rosebuds East, Matt is busy being a realtor/songwriter/daddy daycare and I’ve got plenty of projects to finish up, including a ThumpMonks record years in the making.
There are 5 brand new Superchick songs we will release into the wild soon. When he first started chemo, our drummer Chase called me to say, “Don’t finish the record without me; I’m coming back in the fall.” We managed to get a couple studio sessions with him and some of Chase’s rhythmic creativity lives on in these songs. They are the last words in a sentence that was brought to a full stop by Chase’s passing. These new songs are dedicated to his fighting optimism. They are some of the best we’ve done and I hope they honor his memory.
But Superchick as a book is only done with the first chapter. It was a love letter to kids who had forgotten they were born to be world changers. Superchick was about an idea, not the people you saw on stage. When we started, I didn’t want there to be any band photography at all. The labels insisted that people wanted a face to go with the music. I wanted the album covers to be reflective so that when you picked it up, you would see your face. The lyrics are about you; they are your stories and the stories you will write. Superchick is about what is possible when you believe and the proof that it works is you.
And while you’ll not see the people you knew as Superchick together on stage again, there are still songs unfinished and words awaiting music. Perhaps someone reading this feels like she was born to wear the cape. Something will always push its way to the surface if we let it. Sometimes endings are new beginnings. It’s never over as long as you can find your courage and faith.
You made it possible for us to write this chapter. We set out to change the world and in the end, you changed ours.
Listen to Superchick Here
|Karaoke Superstars||2002||Inpop Records|
|Last One Picked||2002||Inpop Records|
|Beauty from Pain 1.1||2006||Inpop Records|
|Double Take||2007||Inpop Records|
|Rock What You Got||2008||Inpop Records|
|Stand In The Rain EP||2009||Inpop Records|