Slag Queens are a four piece post-punk group from Tasmania. At the core of the band has been the creative relationship between lyricist and bassist Lucinda Shannon and drummer Claire Johnston. The pair founded the band as a weekly jam in West Launceston in mid-2015.
Slag Queens established themselves quickly in the Tasmanian music scene. They found themselves most at home amongst Hobart’s flamboyant underground music scene, playing with bands like The Native Cats, All The Weathers, A. Swayze and the Ghosts and Bu$ Money. This opened new opportunities for experimenting and collaborating with Hobart musicians including guitarist Tamara Kempton (The Soda Creamers, Catsuit) and Dan Kolencik, who joined the group on synth.
In early 2018, Slag Queens released ‘Lena’ as part of a compilation compiled by Melbourne’s Listen Records. They shocked themselves as ‘Lena’ came in at #4 on the AMRAP Metro Charts and was playlisted on Spotify by Courtney Barnett. Later that year, Shannon, Johnston, Kempton and Kolencik released their debut album ‘You Can’t Go Out Like That’, recorded by Jordan Marson (Naked, Oceans, Paint Your Face Golden), on vinyl via Hobart indie label Rough Skies Records. The album’s first single ‘Waterfall’ topped the AMRAP Metro Charts and was reissued on vinyl in the USA as part of Emotional Response Records ‘Typical Girls Volume 5 Compilation’.
In early 2019, Shannon and Johnston began collaborating with guitarist Amber Perez-Wright and electronic noise artist, Wesley Miles. The group toured ‘You Can’t Go Out Like That’ across Australia and performed at Mona Foma, Dark Mofo, A Festival Called Panama and FBi Radio’s Away Game #4.
Stylistically, Slag Queens is difficult to pin down and has been associated with genres such as post-punk, punk, indie rock and new wave. In a review of ‘You Can’t Go Out Like That’, US publication Yellow Green Red suggested, “It feels like groups as varied as Talking Heads, Bratmobile and Tune-Yards…” Underpinning this broad approach, however, is Shannon and Johnston’s drum and bass relationship, along with Shannon’s unique vocal delivery. Shannon’s lyrical viewpoint has a strong feminist bent, calling out inequality while also airing frustration about relationships with other women and queer pals.
Slag Queens are currently based in Hobart and are focussed on writing and recording new material to follow-up ‘You Can’t Go Out Like That’.