Mid-West American folk-rocker and multi-instrumentalist Germano first started playing piano aged seven—alongside her six other siblings, each of whom were forced to play an instrument until they were 18. Afterwards she went on to become violinist with John Cougar Mellencamp and Bob Seger, also working as a session musician for Billy Joel, Simple Minds and Iggy Pop. Her 1991 debut album arrived on her own label, Major Bill, but suffered from inadequate production and distribution. Her second album was on Capitol Records, and on it she added feedback, samples and tape loops to the diet of guitar and violin. It was presented in a radically different form to UK audiences by 4AD Records, whose Ivo Watts Russell remixed a five-track mini-album sampler, INCONSIDERATE BITCH, in January 1994. This was Germano at her most effective, with stunning arrangements of her multi-instrumental skills, including effects-driven guitar, synthesizer, piano, violin and mandolin. GEEK THE GIRL, as Germano wrote in her sleevenote, was ‘the story of a girl who is confused about how to be sexual and cool in the world’. Harrowing and committed, songs such as A Psychopath revealed artistic positioning somewhere between PJ Harvey and Tori Amos, though she has yet to reap a similar level of commercial reward.
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