Tarah Who? Well, “she” equals “they,” and “they’re” a power duo masterminded by grunge-punk sage Tarah Carpenter, a firebrand front-woman 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? recalls 1990s alt-rock and grunge’s tradition of balancing integrity with tuneful song-craft. Entries in the Tarah Who? oeuvre sit nicely alongside Alanis Morissette, Foo fighters, The Distillers, Nirvana, Pearl Jam, and Spinerette. Tarah Who? is a in every sense of the phrase, bonded together by telepathic musical interplay and profound interpersonal connections. In addition to Tarah, drummer/backing vocalist Coralie Hervé. Previously, Tarah Who? has released two full-lengths, three EPs, and one single of raw punky rock n’ roll. The duo’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’s, Half Middle Child Syndrome,64Women and the single to be release in November 2019 Pantomath. With a stable lineup, and a dynamic rhythm section that can effortlessly shift from scorched-earth rock to tender balladry, the duo is embarking on a halcyon era ushered in by its current EP, 64 Women.
Here’s what the duo had to say when we got the chance to ask them some questions.
How did you all meet?
Coralie – “Tarah and I were friends on Facebook, we had some common friends in France. I saw that she was living in Los Angeles and I was gonna go study at the Musicians Institute so I asked for a few tips. A few months later she asked me if I would be interested in joining her band Tarah Who?”
Tarah – “Yes, pretty much. I started Tarah Who? back in 2006 when I first moved to Los Angeles. Spent a lot of time playing with all kinds of musicians and producers, trying to find a sound for Tarah Who? and here we are! We are a Rock band or duo, with grunge and punk influences”.
Who were your musical influences growing up?
Coralie – “I was listening to a lot of classic rock like Bon Jovi, ACDC … when I was 10. A few years later I discovered Nightwish, a symphonic metal band from Finland, I fell in love with this genre”.
Tarah – “I started by listening to Alanis Morissette, then I discovered, Motorhead, Pantera, RATM, The Distillers, Hole etc… and Fell in love with this genre of music”.
What made you want to be in a band?
Coralie – “Been able to play music with people is awesome! Sharing good moments, having fun and playing songs that you like”.
Tarah – “I don’t see it like that. I write and play music, and I work with other musicians to make things happen. Especially live shows. We are more a team than a band”.
What has been your best gig?
Tarah – “I have a few in mind, but the ones that stick out are because they were too fun. In London, this woman, broke her arm losh pitting on our songs and she would not leave until the end of the song. Then she was escorted but she really tried to fight it with security. The other one that sticks out is the show I booked at a strip club, without realizing that it was a strip club until we arrived”.
Can you tell us a bit about your music?
Tarah – “We recorded a new album during the whole lockdown, quarantine via Zoom! We met for a weekend to record all the songs with our producer Jason Orme. It was our first time actually playing them together. It was weird! We have been releasing singles since January. Feel free to check out our youtube and website for all of the information”.
Can you describe your music in 3 words?
Caralie – “Loud, Raw, Heavy”.
Tarah – “Authentic, Rock, Energetic”.
What makes your band stand out from others?
Tarah – “I guess the fact that we are a duo who sounds like we are a full band, and we are not trying to fit in one category. We just want to play what feels right for the song”.
What are your plans for the rest of 2021?
Caralie – “We are releasing new singles and videos before our new album comes out later this year”.
Tarah – “As long as we can’t play live performances, we are going to use the internet and stream. We are also releasing singles and music videos until the release of our album. We are actually quite busy despite the shows not happening”.
If your band had to be remembered for one thing apart from your music what would you want it to be?
Tarah – “Our hard work, believing in something and going all the way in for it”.
Do you have any gig’s coming up?
Caralie – “Hopefully soon when everything will come back to normal”.
Tarah – “We have a live stream for SPIN Magazine on twitch”:
By Ollie Cooper