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Pretty Girls Make Graves

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  • Formed: Seattle, WA
  • Years Active: 2000s


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All Music Guide:

Named for either the Smiths song or a line from Kerouac's The Dharma Bums, Seattle, WA's Pretty Girls Make Graves began touring the country only months after the Murder City Devils, which Derek Fudesco also played bass in, called it quits. During the summer of 2001, Fudesco started writing songs with friends Andrea Zollo (whom he played with in Death Wish Kids), ex-Bee Hive Vaults members Nathen Johnson and Nick DeWitt, plus Kill Sadie's Jason Clark. Their first release, a self-titled, four-song EP full of bursts of energy and emotion released on Dim Mak, created enough interest to land them a spot in the AP's "100 Bands You Need to Know in '02." In April 2002, Good Health came out on Lookout! Records. Miming the same energies as the EP, but in nine songs and 27 minutes, the full-length combined early Fugazi and a bit of Rocket from the Crypt, but made new. Add X-Ray Spex and Avengers influences coupled by backup vocals and a hard-hitting rhythm section, and it's easy to understand where they're coming from. Zollo resists critics' comparisons to Sleater-Kinney or Bikini Kill, because in fact, Pretty Girls Make Graves sounds nothing like either group. Following the release of Good Health, the band jumped to Matador, releasing the This Is Our Emergency single in late 2003 and the full-length New Romance soon after. The band set off on tours with the likes of Death Cab for Cutie, Bloc Party, and Franz Ferdinand, and after adding keyboardist Leona Marrs to the lineup, released Élan Vital in early 2006. A year later -- and after a final round of spring touring -- Pretty Girls Make Graves dissolved, as drummer DeWitt departed and the band did not want to continue on without him.


This article is about the American band. For the song by The Smiths, see The Smiths (album).

Pretty Girls Make Graves was a post-punk band, formed in Seattle in 2001, named after The Smiths song of the same name (which itself was named after a quote from Jack Kerouac's The Dharma Bums). Andrea Zollo and Derek Fudesco had played together previously in The Hookers, as well as The Death Wish Kids and Area 51 along with Dann Gallucci, with whom Derek had formed Murder City Devils. Not long before the Murder City Devils disbanded, Derek and Andrea formed Pretty Girls Make Graves along with Jay, Nick and Nathan. They played the Coachella Valley Music and Arts Festival in 2004.

News broke that the band was breaking up on 29 January 2007. Their final two shows were 9 June 2007, in Seattle.

^ "Pretty Girls Make Graves Interview". Suicide Girls. Retrieved August 2004. ^ Pretty Girls Make Graves Split. Posted 29 January 2007.


The band released their first EP on Dim Mak and Sound Virus Records before releasing their debut album Good Health on Lookout Records in April 2002. The band would later sign to Matador records where they released The New Romance. Guitarist Nathan Thelen left Pretty Girls Make Graves in March 2004 to form Moonrats and Leona Marrs (formerly of HintHint) joined as a multi-instrumentalist. On January 29, 2007 the band announced that Nick had left the band and their May 2007 tour would be their last.


Andrea Zollo- vocalsDerek Fudesco – bass, vocalsJ. Clark– guitar, keyboards, samples, vocalsLeona Marrs – keyboards, accordion, vocals (2004–2007)Nick Dewitt – drums, samples, keyboards, trumpet, vocals (2001–2007)
Former band members[edit]
Nathan Thelen – guitar, vocals (2001–2004)


J. Clark formed Jaguar Love with former Blood Brothers members Johnny Whitney and Cody Votolato. Clark is the drummer in the band. Jaguar Love signed with Matador Records, former home of Pretty Girls Make Graves. On February 18, 2009 it was announced Jay was no longer playing in the line up of Jaguar Love, being replaced with a drum machine on that tour.

Nick Dewitt continues working on his solo electronic project Dutch Dub. He also plays with Amy Blaschke in Night Canopy.

Derek Fudesco formed The Cave Singers with Pete Quirk of Hint Hint and Marty Lund of Cobra High.

Soon after leaving Pretty Girls Make Graves, Nathan Thelen started Moonrats in Seattle together with keyboard player Aska Matsumiya and drummer Jason Echeverria. They moved to Los Angeles and released an EP on their own. They put out a full-length and a 7" on LA Record in 2008.

Andrea Zollo plays drums with Triumph of Lethargy Skinned Alive to Death and also sings in Deep Creep with Derek Fudesco.

Leona Marrs is a LAC in Los Angeles, CA.

The band's song "Something Bigger, Something Brighter" was featured in the game Rock Band 3.

Nathan Thelen has a new band, Drug Cabin, with Marcus Congleton ex of Ambulance Ltd and they are releasing two albums early this year on 401K Music Inc.

^ Pitchfork: Jaguar Love (ex-PGMG, Blood Brothers) Sign to Matador

Cover songs[edit]

"C-30 C-60 C-90 GO!" by Bow Wow Wow


Speakers Push the Air (2002)This Is Our Emergency (2003)All Medicated Geniuses (2003)The Nocturnal House (2006)
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