My Ruin is an American alternative metal band from Los Angeles, CA, formed in 1999. My Ruin, at its core, is Tairrie B (vocals) and her husband Mick Murphy (guitars), with various other members joining them over the years. Tairrie B formed the band after her previous group Tura Satana disbanded. My Ruin‘s heavy sound mixes extreme metal with industrial influences, and Tairrie B’s aggressive vocal style mixes melodic singing, screams, rap and spoken word. She uses this band to exorcise her personal demons, raging out, often, against mysogyny and the objectification of women, and she has the voice and stage persona to make you respect her, or even fear her. I love this quote from a Classic Rock magazine review: “Tairrie B doesn’t so much open her heart to you as rip it still beating from a gaping wound in her chest before forcing the bloody mess down your throat.” That is beautiful. My Ruin has released 7 studio albums to date, with their 8th to be released on June 11, 2013.
My Ruin‘s debut, Speak & Destroy (1999), was recorded and released before Tairrie B met Mick Murphy and was, in effect, a Tairrie B solo album, and her mission statement. The album opens with a brief but apt sound bite: “The musician’s began to tune up, though it seemed a pointless exercise considering the type of music they were going to play.” In “Terror”, the first single, she says: “I have the right to remain silent / But I choose to speak, sing, scream / I am lips, hips, tits.” Then, later: “I point my finger, take the blame / And this time I will own the name / Because no one is going to ruin me / If I have to, I will ruin myself / And it will be my ruin.” In “Monster”, she adds: “I’ll be your monster when we speak / And I will speak to destroy.” And, in “Diavolina”, she says: “This is a mantra / So be warned / Hell hath no fury like a woman scorned.” Yeah, I don’t think that song is about shoes. Also, a cover of Soft Cell‘s “Tainted Love” was released as a second single, and the fiery track “Sick With It” appeared on the soundtrack to the 1999 Nicholas Cage film 8MM.
Watch the video for “Terror” here:
The Horror of Beauty (2003) is a grander indictment of objectification and, in particular, the impossible ideals for women set by the patriarchal mass media. And, it rocks! In the awesome “Made To Measure” Tairrie B offers advice to the women who don’t fit the type: “You don’t have to be sorry / You don’t have to be saved / You just need to be proud / Of the body that God gave.” And, in “Get Pretty”, she mocks the ones who buy into it: “Get pretty, plastic parts not included / Get pretty, get pretty / Silicone sold separately.” In “Weightless”, she rages at the oppressors: “Insincerity, insecurity, no integrity / There’s no purity / I will not apologize for scaring you / You are everything wrong with America.” But, she knows exactly who’s to blame. In “Ten Minutes to Hollywood”, she says: “Tell us lies, we believe you / Close your eyes, we won’t see you / Take our lives, if you need to / Suck us dry, let us feed you.” Other cool tracks are “Burn the Witch”, “Radio Silence” and “Rid of Me”. And, “Stage Fright” is a cool but short Black Sabbath-esque instrumental that opens the album.
Watch the video for “Made to Measure” here:
Watch the video for “Ready For Blood” here:
Watch the video for “Long Dark Night” here:
Watch the video for “Tennessee Elegy” here:
1999.08.23 – Speak and Destroy [Album]
2000.09.18 – A Prayer Under Pressure of Violent Anguish [Album]
2001.02.26 – To Britain with Love… And Bruises (Live) [Album]
2003.08.18 – The Shape of Things to Come… [EP]
2003.10.20 – The Horror of Beauty [Album]
2005.11.07 – The Brutal Language [Album]
2008.01.18 – Throat Full of Heart [Album]
2008.11.02 – Alive On The Other Side (Live) [Album]
2010.09.20 – Ghosts and Good Stories [Album]
2011.12.07 – A Southern Revelation [Album]
2013.06.11 – The Sacred Mood [Album]
Tairrie B’s first band was Manhole, a rapcore band that raged out against rape, the right to choose, violence against women, and, well, little else. Their debut, All Is Not Well (1996), is an amazingly brutal and powerful feminist statement. But, then, Manhole, for legal reasons, changed their name to Tura Satana, after the star of Russ Meyer‘s 1965 cult classic Faster, Pussycat! Kill! Kill! and released an excellent second album, Relief Through Release (1997), which was more nu metal, less rapcore. However, I prefer All Is Not Well. In the intro to “Put Your Head Out”, Tairrie B declares, “My pussy, my choice!” then, kicks into a pro-choice rap over a Rage Against the Machine-ish groove. The song ends with Tairrie B stating: “And, I’m-a fight for my fucking right!” But, the most powerful track is the anti-rape anthem “Victim”. The song opens with spoken word as Tairrie B drops some rape statistics, then, as the riff kicks in, she screams, “Cuz I ain’t your fucking victim!” The final track, “Down (Reprise)” is just a beat over which Tairrie B raps off the names of her favorite bands like Jack Off Jill, Danzig, Slipknot, Rage Against the Machine, Korn, White Zombie, Marilyn Manson, etc. In the end, she says, “So if you didn’t hear your name, then fuck you, you ain’t down with the Manhole crew. Bitch.”
Watch the video for “Luna” from Relief Through Release here:
1996 – All Is Not Well [Album]
1997 – Relief Through Release [Album]