Interview

Black, purple and pink have become Living Dead Girl’s aesthetic, interview with Molly Rennick

Molly is a model, fundraiser for animal shelters and singer in the modern metal band Living Dead Girl. Born in Canada and at an early stage she started to identify herself with Avril Lavigne and later on also with Marilyn Manson, Nine Inch Nails and In This Moment. Put them in a blender, throw in some dark gothic elements and a sexy attitude and you get Living Dead Girl. Molly was so kind to answer a few questions.

Congrats on the sound you created with Living Dead Girl, it’s heavy and ferocious but also bright and sparkling, how did you come to this sound?

Thank you! Living Dead Girl’s sound is so “me”; it’s literally a mixture of everything that I like combined into one band. I love really dark, heavy music, but I also love catchy, high-energy pop-rock and pop-punk music, and I found myself having a hard time sticking to just one thing—then I realized, I don’t have to! As much as I love screaming and headbanging to heavy music, I didn’t want Living Dead Girl to be JUST heavy—it was super important to me that the melodies and hooks be catchy, and the overall energy of it to be really upbeat. I wanted it to be the heavy metal that I love, but with a really fun vibe. Having fun is the biggest thing for me as an artist and performer and I think I totally nailed the fun aspect in my music.

Three songs released so far and a full-length album is on its way, can you tell us more about the album? When will it be released?

The album is produced by Mitchell Marlow, who’s worked with artists such as In This Moment, New Years Day, Papa Roach, uStarset, etc—working with him was the best decision I’ve ever made. Writing with him was awesome; I felt like he was reading my mind the whole time. He literally brought all of my ideas to life. The album has eleven tracks total and has an all-around high energy vibe to it. It’s heavy, it’s fun, the vocals go from screams to belting, the riffs are awesome, the lyrics are powerful. I totally feel like working with Mitchell gave me a record that exceeded my own expectations, like I didn’t know entirely what I was capable of until I was in the studio doing it. This album is my pride and joy, and I cannot wait to share it with the world this June! 

Is Living Dead Girl a band or do you use studio musicians?

We are a band, but we didn’t all go to LA to record the album—on the album it’s just myself, our guitarist John, and Mitch playing the instruments; it was just easier to do it that way with the travelling and everything! 

Where do you get inspiration from for the lyrics, do they have a personal touch or can they be random topics?

All of my songs are based off of personal experiences; I like songs that are very personal because then it’s easier to do a passionate performance when it’s something you really feel. I just think of a topic or a mood, and something I’ve experienced before, and think, “what would I like to say about this?” and then a song just happens! Inspiration comes to me at the most random times and I’m constantly scribbling notes on napkins or receipts, or typing them in my phone! 

All the songs you released so far have a purple and black touch when talking about the visuals like cover and videos. Is there a deeper meaning to the purple and black touch?

Black, purple and pink have become Living Dead Girl’s aesthetic. I really like how they all look together; it’s both gothic and feminine, which is exactly what Living Dead Girl is all about! 

Do you have a special technique for your voice? You switch with real ease between clear, screaming and growls, do you warm-up or have special training?

The technique I use for my screaming is called vocal fry; it came quite naturally to me (thank god!) and with practice I’ve gotten very good at switching it on and off, which is how I transition between screaming to clean singing. I like there to be as big of a contrast as possible in between the two vocal styles—I get asked all the time if Living Dead Girl has two vocalists and I LOVE THAT!—so I purposely make my clean singing as cute and feminine as possible, so when I scream it’s even MORE shocking to the listeners. If there’s one thing I love, it’s versatility! I do lots of warm ups before screaming; it’s so important to make sure you’re not straining your voice or pushing it to prevent damage, so before shows I do lots of scales, I sing a few go-to warm up songs, and I drink lemon tea with honey to make my throat as comfortable as possible. I had vocal training in the past for clean singing, but my screaming is entirely self-taught and practice. 

I know you’re a huge Marilyn Manson fan but have you other influences to create the style you chose for Living Dead Girl?

I would say I’m a FORMER huge Marilyn Manson fan after recent events came to light. He did play a big role in my influences growing up, but I would also credit Avril Lavigne, Motionless In White, Halestorm, and The Pretty Reckless as big influences on me. All of those artists have great vocals and amazing songwriting; the two things that really get me hooked on an artist’s music. 

Speaking about MM, what are your thoughts about the recent accusations towards him?

I applaud the victims for coming forward, as I can only imagine how difficult it was for them to do so, and by speaking up they could be saving others from potential abuse as well. I’m disappointed by the news like many others, of course, but I am glad that it came out so that an investigation can be done, and hopefully he will be held accountable for his actions so that the victims may get some justice and that no one else is harmed by him. I will no longer support him going forward after learning this about him.

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Photo by Jeremy Saffer