About Pistol Annies
When Miranda Lambert and Ashley Monroe called Angaleena Presley near the dawn of 2011 to ask if she wanted to start a band, Presley had only one question: “Y’all high?” Fair enough. After all, Lambert was already one of the more successful—and radical—singer-songwriters in pop country and Monroe was on the come-up, while Presley, in her own estimation, was rocking a baby to bed, broke. But Presley was serious, and so Pistol Annies were born. To call the band a rebuttal to the polish of pop country is to miss the point. If anything, what makes Pistol Annies so special is how they can sound both rootsy and progressive at the same time, taking on the conventions of honky-tonk and Southern rock with a feminist’s sense of humor and some bracing real talk. A woman in an Annies ballad might daydream, for example, about setting her own house on fire (“Housewife’s Prayer”), while an ode to sticking with it for the long haul (“Unhappily Married”) not only bites off a line like “You’re going bald and I’m getting fat/I hate your mom and you hate my dad,” but somehow manages to make it sound cheerful. A collection of bad-girl anthems and vignettes from forgotten—and foreclosed-upon—America, the band’s first album, Hell On Heels, came out in 2011. Their second, Annie Up, arrived in 2013, with the earthy Interstate Gospel following after a five-year break.