Horsegirl loves to make noise. Rising out of the boisterous Chicago scene, the teenaged trio established themselves as one of the Windy City’s brightest, drawing on the classics of no wave and slacker rock.

"We make music that is loud. Not the loudest ever but loud enough to say it’s loud. And we love loud music."

Horsegirl's mischievous sound is cleaned up to give the hooks some urgency without scrubbing the band of its scuzzy textures, as deadpan vocals let the haywire two-guitar and drums dynamics take control.

After self-releasing their first batch of songs, including the EP “Horsegirl: Ballroom Dance Scene et cetera”, Nora Cheng, Penelope Lowenstein, and Gigi Reece signed to Matador. While the effortlessly catchy lead single “Billy” made waves late in 2021, it’s only a tease of what’s to come. Their debut album Versions of Modern Performance arrives June 3rd, the same day Lowenstein graduates from high school.

Embracing the wild mania of youth while growing into crafty songwriters in their own right, Horsegirl’s music is unpredictable by the virtue of endless possibility.

Horsegirl by Cheryl Dunn

We're excited to announce Horsegirl as part of Rough Trade On The Rise, our dedicated curation putting a spotlight on the emerging music we are the most excited for you to hear, to follow and become a fan of. Read on to discover more about the band in their own words and make sure you check out forthcoming album Versions of Modern Performance, out on June 3rd, 2022.

Horsegirl - Versions of Modern Performance

Rough Trade Exclusive Clear Yellow Vinyl

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Horsegirl on Horsegirl

A self-penned bio

Horsegirl is our band. We have been good friends for quite some time now. And we feel very lucky to be able to do this with each other.

Playing together is probably our favorite activity. We fuel each other creatively very well. And that feeling never runs out. We are able to make all of our album art, posters, shirts, etc because it is how we like to spend our time together.

We make music that is loud. Not the loudest ever but loud enough to say it’s loud. And we love loud music. There’s lots of it here (in Chicago). We also love Chicago a lot. We do what we do best when we’re in Chicago. Out friends inspire us and we inspire each other.

Can’t wait to release the record!
Can’t wait to do it with all our friends!


Five by Five

5 Questions, 5 Answers

Describe Horsegirl in 5 words.

Rock and roll and Noise

5 records you listened to prior to making your album?

Gang of Four - Entertainment!
Belle and Sebastian - Tigermilk
Life Without Buildings - Any Other City
Yo La Tengo - I Can Hear the Heart Beating As One
Exploded View - Obey

Top 5 career moments?

Playing Pitchfork. We love this festival, Penelope grew up going to it. We saw a bunch of musicians on that year’s lineup backstage, but also a bunch of Chicago artists who were working there and helping out, like the Twin Peaks guys, Spencer Tweedy, and Lillie West from Lala Lala. The strong Chicago community we knew in our immediate circle seemed to be playing out on a larger scale too. It was crazy to be a part of that.

Selling out our New York show—it was our first show outside of Chicago that we have sold out, thanks to new college friends and friends of those friends.

Seeing our 7” in our favorite Chicago record store. We weren’t even looking for it when we walked in, and just came across it. It was a moment of wow, this is real.

Completing our album/coming up with the title (same day). We were in Gigi’s car outside of Penelope’s house where we rehearse when it came to us.

Filming the Dirtbag video. All our friends showed up and we banged on pots and pans and did the twist.

You host a pre-release listening party for the album. Who are your 5 VIP guests (dead or alive)?

Brian Eno
Laetitia Sadier
Kazu Makino
Cate Le Bon
Arthur Russell

Top 5 essential tour snacks?

Banana and PB
Granola (for Penelope)
Goldfish (for Nora)
Diet Coke (for Gigi)