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Stars Pick Their Top Five! This week: Fea

There's been a lot of yap lately about the Riot Grrrl aesthetic and sound, and a whole new crop of bands inspired by it. Yes, this killer Chicana Texas punk combo is certainly one of those, but let's get one thing straight: their sonic blast and culture-questioning/reporting transcends genre and classification. Fea tackles with thundering aplomb big open themes of race and gender in a way that's so damn passionate that it actually inspires listener passion, if you can imagine that.

The band's 2016 self-titled debut album bursts with strident punk-pop chords, pummeling drums and punchy bass melodies. Queer and humanist bilingual ragers canvas the human experience—from lover-to-lover personal to rape-culture topical. The downright pretty "Stuck Like You" subtly skewers narcissism and aptly titled "Feminazi" sports the best singsong, multi-lingual punk chorus ever. Fea has all the power of underrated Dangerhouse punk bands like The Alley Cats and The Bags, so it's no wonder the latter's Alice Bag produced a few of the songs on Fea's album (as did Against Me!'s Laura Jane Grace, and Lori Barbero from Babes in Toyland). Band frontwoman Letty Martinez is one of those once-a-decade singers who's both persuasive and melodic while spitting absolute lyric truths that sting like perfectly crafted face-slap slogans ("I remember what you told me/I was pretty with my mouth shut"). Sidenote: the band's rhythm section is Phanie Diaz and Jenn Alva from Girl in a Coma, and they're signed to Joan Jett's Blackheart Records! Here members of Fea put together a list of the five albums that changed their lives. Go see them with Tucson's Sugar Stains and Pigmy Death Ray at 8 p.m. on Saturday, Nov. 5 at The Loudhouse, 915 W. Prince; 393-3598. $10.

Letty Martinez, Singer:

X-Ray Spex—Germ Free Adolescents: One of my all-time favorites! I still listen to this on repeat without skipping. 

Team Dresch—Captain My Captain: This is a great album and full of nostalgia for me. Being the first queercore/riot grrrl band I discovered in my early teens, I felt totally understood. The music is fun, raw, powerful and heart-felt!

Jenn Alva, Bass:

The Smiths—Louder Than Bombs: First tape I've ever worn out, haha. Just a great album from start to finish.

Phanie Diaz, Drummer:

Huggy Bear—Taking The Rough With The Smooch: When I was in my first punk band in '95, my drummer at the time showed me this album and I fell in love. From start to finish, it's one of my favorite albums to listen to for inspiration. Pure raw punk and great lyrics.

Aaron Magana, Guitar:

The Beatles: The Beatles (AKA White Album): First album I learned to play as a kid. ...

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