crystal fairy

A heavy metal/rock supergroup, Crystal Fairy consists of (left to right) Omar Rodríguez-López on bass, Teri Gender Bender on guitar and vocals, Dale Crover behind the drums, and Buzz Osborne on guitar. Photo by David Goldman

The Melvins’ Buzz Osborne and Le Butcherettes’ Teri Gender Bender explain how incredible chemistry and alternate tunings inspired them to make an album together.

If we’re being honest, the world probably doesn’t need another supergroup. The annals of music’s past are positively littered with bands that failed to deliver on the promise of the names involved. But sometimes, a collaboration blossoms into something much bigger than the sum of its famous parts. A good example would be Crystal Fairy, a fresh rock ’n’ cabal formed when guitarist/frontman Buzz Osborne and drummer/human metronome Dale Crover of sludge-metal forebearers the Melvins joined forces with art-punk heroine Teri Gender Bender of Mexican garage-rock upstarts, Le Butcherettes. Visionary string-strangler Omar Rodríguez-López—of At the Drive In and Mars Volta fame—later came onboard to round out the quartet.

Crystal Fairy came together organically when Le Butcherettes toured as an opening act for the Melvins. Osborne and Crover, both fans of Gender Bender’s records and unhinged live performances, invited the her to sing with them on a cover of Bikini Kill’s “Rebel Girl” at the end of their set each night. The onstage chemistry turned out to be electric, and the trio of musicians quickly wanted to see if they could capture it in the studio. After a chance backstage meeting, Gender Bender’s Bosnian Rainbows cohort and Le Butcherettes producer, Rodríguez-López, found his way into the fold to handle bass duties.

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