Metal Chicks Rule

Celebrating METAL Chicks

Maria Brink

Maria Brink – Vocalist for the American Metal band In This Moment

On this website, it seems like all the Metal Chicks are from Europe. Not all. Today, we have Maria Brink from the American Metal band In This Moment.

Maria Brink

Maria Brink from “In This Moment” live at Fort Rock Festival 2013

In This Moment has a very American Metal sound. They’re very heavy, with more of the focus on raw heaviness and aggression versus melody. Their rhythm guitar work is very heavy and raw sounding. And their lyrics tend to be mean, ruthless, and dysfunctional.

Maria Brink herself can sing pretty, but more of her vocals are screamed and brutal. She ranges from atonal screaming to screaming on key, depending on the song.

In This Moment the band is from Albany, New York and was formed in 2005. Their first album Beautiful Tragedy came out in 2007. They’ve had a total of four studio albums, releasing The Dream in 2008, A Star-Crossed Wasteland in 2010 and their latest Blood in 2012.

Maria Brink

Maria Brink at Fort Rock Festival 2013

Although a lot of her singing is atonal, when she sings, she’s capable of some real pretty vocals. It’s pretty cool that she can do both, and do them both well.

Maria Brink herself is a shapely blonde, very attractive. Not that it should make a difference. We’re just saying because it’s a compliment. But don’t let that fool you. Her voice can be quite brutal and scary.

Their music is listed as Metalcore or Alternative Metal. At Metal Chicks Rule, we’re trying to be diverse and supportive of all types of Metal that features Metal Chicks. Because as we’ve said many times, Metal needs more chicks, not less!!!

Give In This Moment a chance. Their music is surprisingly diverse, ranging from atonal Metalcore screaming to some pretty nice melodic parts.

Maria Brink

Maria Brink – Century Media

Photo credits – Live images of Maria Brink by Luis Blanco, licensed CC-2.0. Other image by Century Media.

Floor Jansen

From After Forever, Nightwish, and ReVamp is Dutch singer Floor Jansen

We first heard of Floor Jansen from the Dutch Symphonic Metal band After Forever. But that band broke up in 2009 and she went to ReVamp, where we sort of forgot about her. Kind of weird that several years later, she resurfaced with one of our favorite all-time bands – Nightwish after that band sacked Anette Olzon (or she quit, sources vary and who knows which one is right).

We have to admit, none of us knew about ReVamp. OK, we’re in the States. When good bands play in Europe, they’re playing huge venues. When they come here, they’re playing in places where we wonder if they even break even.

We have seen both Tarja Turunen and Anette Olzon live but none of us have seen Floor Jansen yet. We’ll definitely catch her when Nightwish comes here on their next world tour.

Floor Jansen

Floor Jansen

A little bit about Floor Jansen – she was born in the Netherlands on February 21st, 1981. She is a Dramatic Soprano and has a very powerful voice. She can sing both Metal and Opera. She’s very versatile.

She’s listed as 6’1″ but she appears taller because Tuomas is 6’3″ and they look like they’re the same height. She’s probably a little bit closer to him in height. Hopefully we’ll see her in person because one of the guy writers here is 6’1″ and we’ll see if she’s his height or taller if we see her in person.

Floor Jansen

Floor Jansen

Do we think she fits Nightwish?

We haven’t seen her live yet and she’s not on a Nightwish studio album. However, we have seen their latest DVD and she’s fantastic on the DVD. She has a strong stage presence and a pretty amazing voice. Plus, she looks like a Valkyrie. We think she fits the part perfectly and we can’t wait for Nightwish to come out with a new album with Floor singing.

Photo credits – First picture by Tuomas Vitikainen. Licensed CC 3.0.

Second picture by KaJaNareal. Licensed CC 2.5

Kelly Johnson of Girlschool

Let’s again go back to the 80s – Singer/Lead Guitarist Kelly Johnson of Girlschool

Today, we take women in Metal for granted. But in the 80s, when Metal started making a comeback with the New Wave of British Heavy Metal, Girlschool was a prominent force in that genre. Kelly Johnson was the lead guitarist and lead singer of Girlschool.

Girlschool never did get big. They did a lot of touring with bands like Motörhead, but never did score that high selling album. After four albums in the early 80s with Girlschool, Kelly Johnson left.

Kelly Johnson of Girlschool

Kelly Johnson of Girlschool

Their music by today’s standards sounds dated, and we’re not going to lie and say it stands the test of time. However, we will say that Girlschool deserves a lot of credit. Like we said earlier, today, we take women in Metal for granted. But it wasn’t always that way. Only Lita Ford and Warlock sold well in the 80s. The rest of the Metal bands with female members didn’t fare that well unfortunately.

Would the music sound dated if it was produced better? It’s hard to tell. Their music never did seem to have top notch production qualities.

They never did sell well in the States. They never cracked the Billboard charts. Their 1981 album Hit and Run made Gold in Canada, and it hit number five in the UK, where they’re from.

Kelly Johnson left the band in 1984, after their lighter album Play Dirty which was more hard rock than Metal. They got lighter in an attempt to sell records, but it backfired and they lost their fan base by doing that.

So, she got frustrated and left in early 1984.

She rejoined the band almost ten years later in 1993 and she remained active with them until 1999, which unfortunately, she got diagnosed with cancer.

Kelly Johnson died in 2007 of cancer. Although Girlschool never did get big, we all owe a big thanks to people like Kelly Johnson who paved the way.

Ailyn Giménez of Sirenia

Sirenia has been around since 2001, and we’ve first known of them with their previous singer. In 2008 though, Ailyn Giménez from Spain took over vocal duties and we all agree that she’s a great match for the Norwegian Gothic Metal band.

Ailyn Giménez from Sirenia

Ailyn Giménez from Sirenia

Ailyn joins Sirenia

Ailyn Giménez’s first album with the band was The 13th Floor. She’s been with them for three albums now, which hopefully means she’s there to stay. The Enigma of Life was released in 2011 and their most recent one is Perils of the Deep Blue, which was released last year.

Ailyn Giménez from Sirenia

Ailyn performing live

Perils of the Deep Blue

Their latest album, Perils of the Deep Blue has a more Symphonic Metal sound so it’s kind of a hybrid between Gothic Metal and Symphonic Metal. It may be their best effort to date because the sound is very big. Ailyn seems to push her voice more on this album. Which is a good thing.

The music is more dynamic, which pretty epic changes between heavy and beautiful. Ailyn pulls it off perfectly, and thus, deserves some serious recognition as a Metal singer.

In the credits of the CD, it appears Sirenia only has two full time members. Ailyn Giménez is just listed as Ailyn (no last name like Madonna, Prince, or McLovin). Morten Veland, who also co-founded Tristania, who as you may know had a huge development in the development of Gothic Metal, plays practically every other instrument.

The album is very good. Ailyn really pushes her voice and has an enchantingly beautiful voice that works perfectly with the heaviness of the album.

We think of all their albums, their latest was definitely their best as Veland not only appeared to have full freedom, he seemed to have a chip on his shoulder to prove that Sirenia can be as good as Tristania.

Ailyn Sirenia

Ailyn live

Photo credits: The first picture is from Ailyn’s Facebook page. The second picture is from Fevermind and is Public Domain. The third picture is from MathKnight and has a Creative Commons 2.5 license.

In defense of Anette Olzon

Metal Chicks Rule is four friends who have known each other for years, and all agree on one thing – WE NEED MORE WOMEN IN METAL!!!

We’re supposed to use the word “we” when we agree on things and we’re not supposed to use our real names.  That was the agreement when we started this blog.

We also are supposed to give props whenever possible and stay away from criticizing females in Metal.  Of the four of us, I didn’t like the Tarja vs Anette article at all, but said “just go ahead.”

I happen to like Anette Olzon

I happen to be a Facebook fan of Anette Olzon.  The four of us saw Nightwish on Tarja’s last tour and also saw them on Anette’s first tour.  We liked both shows a lot and Nightwish happens to be my favorite band.  I love Tarja.  I love Anette.  And I now love Floor.  I think of all the women they could have found to replace Anette, they did a great job finding Floor.

Anette Olzon

Anette Olzon with Nightwish

I think Anette gets slammed too much by people and doesn’t get the credit she deserves.  First and foremost, Anette Olzon is the nicest person in the world. So if the criticism against her is mean spirited, I get really angry. I understand some people think she was a bad fit in Nightwish. If you really think that, then the fault is Nightwish. They’re the ones who picked her. They could have said “no” and got another singer.

Live, Anette Olzon is amazing!

I thought that live, she was amazing. She had a lot of charisma on stage and showed on stage how likeable she is. She’s like the same person on stage as she is in person. She’s very down to earth. She’s very likeable, and is really a nice, caring, sweet woman.

She does have a strong voice too. So she has a pop background. Once again, if Nightwish had a problem with that, then why did they pick her? That to me makes no sense.

It’s on YouTube where I hear the worst comments. But I didn’t like the article we posted here either. We said it was a mismatch from the beginning. I didn’t think that. We also said that Imaginaerum was forgettable and they didn’t even say the name of the album. I thought it was pretty good and really showcased what Anette could do.

But whatever. The good thing is the rest of them agreed to let me write this up without any input from them. So this is all me.

I happen to love Anette Olzon and hope when she comes here that she sings a lot from Dark Passion Play and Imaginaerum because she was excellent in both albums.

Photo credit: Carly. License – Creative Commons 2.0

We love Tarja Turunen

Of course loves Symphonic Metal singer Tarja Turunen

Tarja Turunen

Tarja Turunen

Is this even a question that we at Metal Chicks Rule love Tarja Turunen? She’s the one who started it all for Female Singers in the whole Symphonic Metal genre. There may have been female singers in Symphonic Metal before Tarja, but even if there were, everyone in the Symphonic Metal genre was at least somewhat influenced by her.

Born in August 17, 1977 in Finland, Tarja Turunen came to prominence in the band that is arguably best of genre – Nightwish. She was one of the co-founders of the band, along with keyboardist Tuomas Holopainen and guitarist Emppu Vuorinen back in 1996.

Their first album wasn’t exactly Metal and didn’t properly use Tarja’s voice. But their second album, 1998’s Oceanborn, wow!!! Tarja’s talent was unleashed on the world and became undeniable. She can sing.

With both a Mezzo-Soprano and Soprano range, Tarja is the real deal. She’s an Opera singer who sings Metal. And you’ll be hard-pressed to find anyone with a working brain cell who thinks she doesn’t have a good voice.

Nightwish rose in Europe pretty fast, but in the States, not as fast. We didn’t know about Nightwish until their infamous album Once. We have one member of Metal Chicks Rule who says that Once is hands down the best album of the 2000s. We all love this album.

On this album, she sings both Metal and Opera and pulls them both off perfectly. She even has some experimental techniques on the song “The Siren.” You really need to hear this album if you haven’t already.

Unfortunately for us, after the tour, Nightwish dismissed Tarja. Long story.

We did get to catch her on that tour and she was amazing. She doesn’t move around much, but she doesn’t have to. She makes a lot of operatic movements with her arms and really draws a lot of attention that way. We mean, in a real good way. She has a commanding presence and definitely does not lack charisma. If you get a chance to see her perform live, take it.

So after Nightwish, she went solo. She lives in Argentina now with her husband and daughter.

Tarja Turunen guests vocals on a lot of songs. She did a duet with Sharon den Adel on the song “Paradise (What About Us?)” in which they sound fabulous together.

She was also the reason Simone Simons started singing.

Photo credit – Rey Brujo under the CC 3.0 license

Doro Pesch

Let’s again go back to the 80s and remember Doro Pesch from Warlock, and give her props for still being active today

So earlier, we did Lita Ford. Although Warlock from Germany was never as big as Lita Ford got in the States, they still deserve heaps and heaps and heaps of praise for showing the world that chicks can play Metal too, and play it well.

Doro Pesch was the former lead singer of the German Heavy Metal band Warlock from 1982-1988. In that time period, Warlock released four albums. Unfortunately, none of them sold very well in the States. Their fourth and final album Triumph and Agony did crack the Billboard charts, but wasn’t enough to keep the band together. But the older folks here remember seeing Warlock on MTV’s Headbangers’ Ball.

We loved her voice. It was rough. It was mean. And she looked AWESOME in leather.

This is “Fight For Rock.”

Unfortunately, Warlock dissolved. Doro though kept active as the band Doro.

Doro Pesch former singer of Warlock


Doro Pesch is still active today

Doro Pesch is still active today. She gave up raising a family to continue to be active in music.

Doro’s place in Metal history

In the 80s, there weren’t too many successful chicks in Metal unfortunately. There was Lita Ford, Vixen, Bitch, and that’s just about it.

So giving credit where it’s due, Lita Ford and Doro Pesch really helped open the doors to a genre of music that at the time was almost completely dominated by men. Lita Ford deserves a lot of credit, but so does Doro Pesch. And Doro may have had it harder as Lita Ford was already known as one of the members of the Runaways. Plus, Doro was from Germany and as the middle of the 80s drew near, the majority of the successful Metal acts were coming from the States.

So thank you both ladies. Because as we’ve said before, WE NEED MORE CHICKS IN METAL!!!

Photo credit – Doro photographed by Yoshi taken in 2006. Licensed CC-3.0.

Sharon den Adel

We all love Sharon den Adel, whether we call Within Temptation, the band she is lead vocalist of, Symphonic Metal or Pop Metal. But regardless of whatever their genre is, we all love Sharon den Adel.

Sharon den Adel, lead vocalist of Within Temptation

Sharon den Adel

Sharon den Adel co-founds Within Temptation

From the Netherlands, Sharon den Adel and Robert Westerholt co-found the Symphonic Metal band Within Temptation in 1996. Den Adel is listed as having a Mezzo-Soprano range. However, if our ears are correct, she sounds like she can hit both Mezzo-Soprano and Soprano notes.

Their music is pompous and overblown, which to some can be a really good thing. No one will ever say it lacks melody. Personally, we all love them. Their music is catchy and fun. Sharon den Adel is one of the primary songwriters for the band.

We first heard of them around 2007 or so, when they started getting a good following in the States. Since then, we’ve been noticing a lot of copycats. Which isn’t such a bad thing.

They have a lot of similarities with Pop Metal from the 80s, except add keyboards and/or orchestration and instead of a pretty boy with long hair singing, replace him with Sharon den Adel. Which is a good thing. The guys here would much rather look at Sharon den Adel.

If you haven’t heard of Within Temptation yet, judge for yourself their genre. Here is A Shot in the Dark from their 2011 album The Unforgiving.

That album is more produced and catchy than normal and to purists, you might have been disappointed. It sold pretty well, cracking the Billboard 200 in the States and hitting #50.

Their latest album, released this year, is Hydra and is a little bit heavier than their previous effort. We like this one better as it’s more Metal. It even has Tarja Turunen on one of the songs, which is a good thing. We love Tarja.

Sharon den Adel Dour Festival

Sharon den Adel Dour Festival

Sharon den Adel and Robert Westerholt have three children together.

Oh, and we forgot to mention (not that it needs to be said), Sharon den Adel is drop-dead gorgeous.

Photo credits – First photograph taken in France by Olarcadia for and kindly put into Public Domain. Second photograph taken by Nacht and also put into Public Domain.

Liv Kristine

Liv Kristine has been a Metal singer for like forever. Born in 1976 in Norway, she started off singing for the band Theatre of Tragedy.

We found out about her from different ways. We unfortunately have to admit that none of us knew her from her Theatre of Tragedy days. One of us knew her as the backup singer in the Cradle of Filth song Nymphetamine, but the rest of us knew her as the singer for Leaves’ Eyes, for which she co-founded and it’s an amalgam for her name.

Liv Kristine is a Soprano singer and is now married to Leaves’ Eyes and Atrocity vocalist Alexander Krull, who she co-founded the band with.

Liv Kristine in Leaves’ Eyes

Leaves’ Eyes currently have five albums, with their most current album Symphonies of the Night late last year. Their style is Symphonic Metal and Liv Kristine adds her Soprano voice with occasional growling done by Krull. Krull also plays keyboards for the band.

We don’t really agree on our favorite album of the five, but we do agree that the highlight of the music is her voice. She has a beautiful voice that stands out and is distinctive.

Lyrically, they often have Viking themes. Lovelorn came out in 2004, followed by Vinland Saga in 2005. Their next album was Njord in 2009, then Meredead in 2011. Then of course their latest one released late last year.

Liv Kristine

Liv Kristine

Musically, despite them being called Symphonic Metal, they have both strong Gothic Metal and Folk Metal elements and some of their songs even utilize folk instruments in addition to Metal instruments and traditional orchestration. Their lyrics tend to be inspired by Norse Mythology and are very folksy.

Liv Kristine is a vegetarian.

Photo credits – Image of Liv Kristine by Sebastian Breier and released under the Creative Commons 3.0 license.

Alissa White-Gluz

Well, since Angela Gossow has passed the torch to another singer, we decided to give this new singer a warm welcome. For the record, Angela Gossow stepped down on her own and still remains business manager of Arch Enemy. She just needed to spend more time with her family.

Alissa White-Gluz

Alissa White-Gluz, the new singer of Arch Enemy

The good news is the new singer is Alissa White-Gluz. Alissa White-Gluz, like her predecessor, has a pretty sick growl. We wish her the best of luck and hope she can match Angela’s strong stage presence.

A short bio on Alissa White-Gluz

Alissa White-Gluz is a Canadian singer. She was the founding member of the Canadian Melodic Death Metal band The Agonist, from Montreal, Canada. Like Angela Gossow before White-Gluz before her in Arch Enemy, White-Gluz has a very strong growl. We’re not clear whether White-Gluz left The Agonist on good terms or not, but like we’ve said and want to make very clear, White-Gluz joined Arch Enemy with Angela Gossow’s blessing and Gossow still is their business manager.

This is a video from Arch Enemy’s latest album War Eternal. It is called “You Will Know My Name.” And yes Alissa White-Gluz, we will know your name.

We are looking forward to seeing the band with their new singer when they come out to the States later on this year. They’re currently touring in Europe.

Photo credit – Mark Scott, Austin TX Creative Commons license 2.0