Chastity Belt: 2015
Chastity Belt (photo by Sarah Burns)
There's no grand story behind the Walla Walla, Washington birth of Chastity Belt. The smart and raucous band was born when four funny and fierce friends decided to play some frat parties at Whitman College. But as fate goes, the quartet of Julia Shapiro, Lydia Lund, Annie Truscott and Gretchen Grimm found that what started as a goofy lark became their calling and career.
After moving to Seattle, they eventually released their debut album in 2013, called No Regerts (yes, deliberately misspelled), which harbored such vital and provocative pogo punk anthems as "Giant Vagina" and "Seattle Party."
Eventually signed by Hardly Art, a subsidiary of Sub Pop—the holy grail label of any Emerald City band— Chastity Belt has segued from collegiate humor to more serious subjects and darker wit on their second album, Time To Go Home. They've forged some great connections too. A serendipitous tour with British post-punk forebears Wire evolved into an ongoing friendship; Wire guitarist Matthew Sims even mixed Chastity Belt's new album. And Chastity Belt recently accompanied Courtney Barnett on her 2015 swing through North America.
When Chastity Belt visited Studio A this spring, they not only played a razor-sharp set, but also brought along their great sense of humor and chatted about feminism, friendship and their dreams of one day quitting their day jobs.