Tarah Who? – Numb Killer
ARTIST NAME: Tarah Who?
SONG TITLE: Numb Killer
ALBUM TITLE: 64 Women
RELEASE DATE: March 8th, 2019
GENRE: Rock, Grunge, Alternative
Tarah Who? is a band that takes a bite of the senses while igniting the imagination with their punk-infused and inventively hungry rock ‘n’ roll. Tarah Who? recalls 1990s alt-rock and grunge’s tradition of balancing integrity with tuneful songcraft.
Tarah Who? Well, “she” equals “they,” and “they’re” a band masterminded by grunge-punk sage Tarah Carpenter, a firebrand frontwoman who channels explosive emotionality into rousing anthems.
“I’m really sensitive to things that happen around me, and I love studying psychology and human behavior” Tarah shares.
“When I write, I seek to process personal stories and news stories through these perspectives, but in a way, that’s relatable to everyone.”
Tarah exudes a spiritual centeredness that is poetically aligned to the origins of her name. The name “Tara” in Buddhist lore refers to the “mother of liberation,” an apt archetypal reference for such a strong and shamanistic female artist.
Tarah Who? is a power trio in every sense of the phrase, bonded together by the telepathic musical interplay and profound interpersonal connections.
In addition to Tarah, the three-piece band also features bassist/backing vocalist Joey Southern and drummer/backing vocalist Coralie Hervé.
Previously, Tarah Who? has released two full-lengths, two EPs, and one single of raw punky rock n’ roll. The band’s output has garnered plaudits and earned feature-story coverage from Gig Radar, Kill The Music, La Grosse Radio, Loud Stuff, Moshville, Music Connection, Muzak, and The Ring Master, among other outlets.
It’s a remarkable feat for an unsigned band to make such waves in the biz, but Tarah Who?’s incendiary live shows and snarling sing-alongs are hard to ignore. Even alt-pop goddess Alanis Morissette’s guitarist Jason Orme has given a big stamp approval to the group, co-producing and playing guitar alongside Tarah on the recently released EP, Half Middle Child Syndrome. Jason will also be on board for the band’s upcoming EP “64 Women”.
With a stable lineup and a dynamic rhythm section that can effortlessly shift from scorched-earth rock to tender balladry, the band is embarking on a halcyon era ushered in by its current EP, Half Middle Child Syndrome. The EP’s name is a cheeky reference to how outsiders sometimes try to make sense of Tarah’s interior landscape.
The fiery EP brims with tunefully tormented songcraft. A live favorite on the EP, “Ache” is built around an ultra-catchy bashed-out punk riff that recalls Nirvana’s irresistible rage.
Beneath the maelstrom of the music is a vulnerable admission of pain over manipulated miscommunication accusations. “Garden of Chloé(s)” showcases Tarah’s gift for melding soulfully melodic vocals with bold and raw lyrics. Here, she grapples with the suicides of two friends named Chloé.
Other EP highlights include the vitriolic punk of “Pay to Play,” and the sweetly seething mid-tempo alt-rocker “Little Pieces.”
Tarah was born in France and began smashing away at the drums at just 14, ignoring those around her who suggested she try her hand at a more “ladylike” musical pursuit.
Willful, and somewhat stubborn, she honed her chops, forged her own creative path, and branched out to bass, guitar, singing, songwriting, and producing (she produced the band’s EP alongside Jason).
After a fateful move to Los Angeles, Tarah made her solo debut as Tarah Who? at a warehouse party. It was a gig she found on Craigslist, and it proved to be the perfect opportunity to share the songs she had been writing privately. After the gig was well-received, Tarah decided to form a band to enhance and support her songs.
Up next, the trio is roaring to get back into the studio with Jason. The band is fired up, inspired, and tighter as friends and musicians.
In closing, bassist Joey offers this final thought: “When I first met Tarah, it floored me how bold she is; I felt this exuberance and fire from her. It reminded me of why I play music in the first place.”
State your reason for choosing music as a career.
Tarah G. Carpenter (TGC): I actually never thought of it this way. I started playing music when I was 14. I played drums and bass in different rock projects. I loved it so much, that’s all I did outside of school.
I was an exchange student when I was 15, in Murray, KY. I could not play the drums there so I bought myself an electric guitar and started writing songs. I was way too shy to tell anyone about the songs that I wrote. I still don’t consider myself a singer, but I just can’t see anyone else telling my stories.
Music is a way of expressing and letting go of all of the emotions or feelings that truly stay in me. I don’t think of music as a career. It’s just what I do to be me.
Tell us how you write the lyrics to your song.
It’s all a burst of emotions. Almost like a flash. It doesn’t really last that long. I just feel suddenly really inspired or in my thoughts. It’s really hard to describe!
I like to carry a pen and paper because I never know when it is going to come and I don’t want to miss it. I also like to feel the muscles of my wrist, I love to write. I just put it all down on a piece of paper or receipt or anything I find at the time. I put a date and the time and I let it sit – Sometimes a few days, sometimes weeks. Then I come back to it. I don’t change anything because I want to stay as authentic to the emotions as possible.
I grab my guitar and the music is usually already in my head playing. I make demos of the songs, playing the drums, bass, guitar, vocals, and a few backing vocal ideas and then I bring them to the rehearsal. Joey (Bass) and Coralie (Drums) learn the songs and then we all work on the sound and bring it to life.
Share your press release and reviews with us.
The fierce power trio is back with a new EP: “Half Middle Child Syndrome”15 minutes of infectious rage rock that will leave you compelled to want more!”
Hailing from Paris, singer-songwriter, multi-instrumentalist and all-around fireball Tarah G. Carpenter relocated to Los Angeles with the desire to explore the diverse music scene it harbors.
With prior experience in several bands, her first taste of flying solo arrived after she answered a Craigslist ad calling for an artist to perform at a downtown warehouse party. Although Carpenter is the “mind, soul, rock & roll heartbeat, and operator” of the project, she enlisted the help of fellow musicians Joey Southern (Bass) and Coralie Hervé (Drums) to complete this snarling fusion of punk, grunge, and straight-up rock.
TARAH WHO? has just released a new ep called “Half Middle Child Syndrome” produced by Tarah G. Carpenter and Jason Orme (Alanis Morissette).
TARAH WHO? has been featured recently in Vents magazine, GigRadar in the UK, Ringmaster, music connection, INKED magazine in France, and many more.
Tarah Who? you may ask, and the answer is a band that takes a bite of the senses while igniting the imagination with their punk-infused and inventively hungry rock ‘n’ roll. The project of French-born and L.A.-based vocalist/guitarist/songwriter Tarah G. Carpenter, Tarah Who? is a band really beginning to entice widespread awareness with a sound that simply demands attention.
Musicianship: Right out of the gate, it’s clear Carpenter is a vocal powerhouse. Her compelling, bassy register is nuanced with a timbre reminiscent of grunge god Eddie Vedder. She effortlessly plummets into guttural bellows, exhibited on sharply titled single “Bitchcraft.”
In support of her biting growls, straightforward power chords on the guitar embody the no-frills characteristics of the punk music the band presents.
Fat basslines provided by Peltcher interlock snugly with Hervé’s frantic yet steady percussion, creating a solid foundation on which Carpenter can wail.
Carpenter’s lyrics feel acutely personal, dealing with emotions and ideas she “needs to let out.”
Performance: Celebrating the release of their new EP entitled Half Middle Child Syndrome; the band drew a substantial audience. Setting off the show, the trio wasted no time seizing control of the stage with ferocity.
Carpenter’s personality immediately shone through when she began with a humorously deadpan remark about how she forgot to urinate and may have to finish the set early.
Overall, Tarah Who? delivered a lively performance that elicited vigorous head-banging from the audience.
Tarah Who? ’s past achievements to date:
Toured the US, Europe, and the UK.
Independently recorded and released 2 albums and 2 EPs.
Gained national and regional radio exposure.
Gained national, regional, and online press coverage (Music Connection, GigRadar, VENT magazine, INKED Magazine France.)
Successfully built (and continues building) an online following.
Discuss your life outside the music world.
As an independent musician… there is not much time outside of the music world but I have do have a few hobbies and passions other than music.
I love martial arts, tattoos, photography, cooking, traveling, and discovering new cultures and animals.
Discuss your music career.
I started Tarah Who? as a solo acoustic act. I was discovered on Myspace by a producer who wanted to make my demos a professional-sounding album.
I started working with musicians, and over the years, I got more and more confident to run my project how I want it to sound-like.
Like I said earlier I was really shy and quiet. Not that I am not anymore I have definitely learned a lot, I know what I want and I care way less about what people think. I think that is what you need if you want to stay true to your art.
I have met amazing musicians who helped in growing and building Tarah Who? Now I am surrounded by 2 amazing people and musicians, and I feel really lucky to have them in the band and sharing this crazy adventure together.
Elaborate on your artist’s name.
We were back in France and I was looking for a new band name because the name we were going by was taken by a French rap artist who was blowing up at the time. She did not promote her physique so no one knew what she looked like. We only knew from her name (which is the same as my birth name) that she was also half Vietnamese. People started thinking that I was her. So we, as a band would either be booked because they thought we were her, and they were shocked to hear a punk band play.
Or we would not get the gig because they thought we were her and why would a French rap artist want to play in an underground venue? So I started looking and thinking of new band names.
I had sent a list and the subject of that email was “Tarah WHOOO???” and everyone responded, “I actually like the subject of this email best..!”
We had a bunch of shows lined up so I did not really have time to think about it. We just went for it, and 14 years later… well I think it’s just too late!
List your favorite music videos with reasons.
1 – BALA – Omertá – I just really love this band. I love their music and I like their style.
2 – Foo Fighters – The Pretender. I like the video. I just think it is elegant and cool.
3 – Dead Sara – Weatherman.
Tell us your source of inspiration.
People… how we think, how we act, and how we react. Our emotions… everything…everyone.
Tell us your experience of dealing with fans.
I love meeting our fans but to tell you the truth, most people are scared of me! Usually, after our shows, people go to Joey and Coralie or our friends at the merch table. Then they come to me like “Hey Tarah, this is so and so… they want to meet you…” and then we talk and take pictures, etc… but yeah… LOL!
Elaborate on the recording of this song.
We recorded the drums at Thomas Lang’s studio, then we moved the tracks to Jason Orme’s studio in Hollywood (guitar player of Alanis Morissette). I love working with Jason. He is very easygoing and has great ideas.
Matt Houdini from Lujuria stopped by to record some backing vocals. Overall we all had a great experience and I love to hear how a song starts in my head and ends up mastered on a CD – (Yes, we still press CDs).
Jason has amazing-sounding vintage guitars that I was very happy to use on this EP.
Tell us about your future projects.
We are actually going on tour this Friday with a band from the UK called YUR MUM. We are super excited about that!
We have a new music video in the works for when we come back but I can’t say too much about it yet, but it’s going to be a big project.
I am working on the demo of the next EP for 2020. We are also planning to go to Canada sometime this year and in September we are touring in France and in the UK.
List the names of those that have supported you so far.
Coralie Hervé, Joey Southern, Lesley Roberts, Hien Hoang, Mireille Charpentier, Francois, Nam, Lan, Dung, Linh, Vinh Hoang, Andrea Pardo, Erica Torres, Loic and Magali Hervé, Cindy and Ray Soto, Angie Joseph, Jason Orme, Thomas Lang, Ash Orphan, Gwendoline Armand, Robert Fagan, Geordie Gillespie, Aimie Lovett, I can’t name all of our friends and fans but for sure they belong in this list. YOU for promoting our song and project!
Tell us your point of view on vocal tuning.
For rock music…I don’t think so. Other genres… I don’t really care… I mean… I think it’s a matter of taste and genre.
I personally don’t like it but I could see why it would work for certain songs. If you use it because you are lazy to work on your vocals then maybe you should not sing that part.
If you use vocal tuning as an effect in the song I guess it could work… Some people like it. It’s like keyboards in a rock band or electro-rock…
I am not usually a big fan but here and there; there will be a song that’s very cool! Depends on how and why it’s done.
Tell us your thought on quality and quantity for the release of songs.
In today’s music industry, I think it is wiser for us, to release EPs. It gives us consistency in our promotion, we get to promote something every year: record, promote a tour, write… do it all again.
You need to stay on top of your game and have something to promote and something to share. This does not apply to everyone though. Some projects are more a universe and maybe they need to release an album.
I don’t think there is one formula. I believe in doing what is best for your art, for your own project. Also what I have learned over the years of working with different people is that… I released an album in 2011, and we still play some of the songs from that album, but now I have grown, I have changed a couple of things, added some backing vocals. If people listen to us live and like those songs, they will hear that the studio version is different – not bad, just different. It was great to release it at the time that I did. I just think that as independent artists, we have the luxury to choose and decide what we want. We should not rush anything. Just do what feels right.
Definitely, quality over quantity but don’t overthink the quality of your product either!
Tell us your opinion on categorizing music into genres and sub-genres.
We don’t have one genre. We have elements of punk, grunge, garage, metal… We are Rock for sure but we have a little bit of everything. I understand that people need a label but it is really hard…
State the genre you despise most with reason.
I don’t despise a music genre, but I despise a style: whining. I can’t stand songs with vocals of a man or a woman who just whines and complains. It makes me really angry! I just change it immediately! It’s not about the tempo of the song. It’s just the attitude!
List your five favorite movies with reasons.
1 – Bridesmaids – I think this movie is hilarious; I adore Kristen Wiig.
2 – The Heat – Melissa McCarthy, hilarious, and Sandra Bullock (Total crush on Sandra Bullock).
3 – Resident Evil – I love Zombie movies and especially if Milla is fighting them.
4 – Underworld – Vampires are a thing of mine too… especially if Kate Beckinsale is involved LOL!
5 – I know it is not a movie but I just want to share my favorite TV show: “Wentworth” Australian TV show – If you don’t know it… You don’t know what you are missing!
State the title of the song and the meaning.
Numb killer – one who kills because they’ve become numb.
I wrote this song in the back seat of my friend’s car. We had just heard about the news about the terrorist attacks at Ariana Grande’s concert in Manchester.
While my friends kept on talking, I started wondering if the assailant had had any emotions or hesitations before going through with his actions.
“Numb Killer” is very blunt and intense: musically, in the band’s performance but also visually, through their music video.
Tarah Who? expresses their sentiment of anger, pain, and desolation in front of such disturbing and atrocious crimes against humanity.
State the title of the album and the reason for choosing the title.
‘64 Women’ is the highly anticipated EP from the emergent L.A. power trio Tarah Who?.
Band leader Tarah G. Carpenter wanted to release the EP on March 8, which falls on International Women’s Day in deference to the 64 women who were incarcerated with her at the downtown L.A. immigration jail in November 2016.
From the intense and tragic terrorist attack theme single “Numb Killer” to the betrayal, relationship song “Hurt” a la PJ Harvey. Tarah Who? will take one on a very emotional and energetic ride as this authentic, raw rock will make you want to get up and mosh like we are still living the 90s.