Ladies Who Rock: 10 Female-Fronted Bands Who Are Crushing It

There needs to be more women in the music industry. Period. More performers, more writers, more producers and especially more engineers. There are so many talented women out there who aren’t getting the recognition they deserve in the highly male-orientated workplace. Don’t get me wrong, on the most part, the men are talented – wonderful in fact, but come on ladies it’s time to show them what you’ve got.

We’ve collated a list of the leading ladies in the current Indie and Rock scene who are grabbing the balls of any looker-downer and lassoing them until they turn blue.

1. Ellie Rowsell – Wolf Alice

Photograph by Paul Hudson

Wolf Alice are without a doubt the biggest band on this list, however they deserve to be there. They have been at the battlefront of the mainstream rock scene for the past 5 years.

Even though Rowsell may seem timid in interviews, when she lets loose on stage a whole different side can be seen. The roaring chants of ‘Yuk Foo‘ and huge chorus of ‘You’re a Germ‘ show that this lady means business. Her musicality cannot go a miss with the beautiful phrasing and tonality of ‘Don’t Delete The Kisses‘ from their latest album ‘Visions of Life’ which is taking the British public by a storm.

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 2. Izzy B Phillips – Black Honey

Photograph by Paul Hudson

Izzy B Phillips has a captivating look in her make-up covered eyes when she’s performing, creating the excitement and energy that Black Honey shows are known for. This fast growing band had a hugely successful 2017 gaining support from BBC Radio 1, and touring with modern rock royalty Royal Blood.

With latest single ‘Dig’ showing off characteristic spacey guitar sounds laced in strong vocals from Phillips in a memorable chorus – it shows off why this band are coming up strong.

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3. Heather Baron-Gracie – Pale Waves

After touring and working with The 1975, you sure can hear the Matt Healy influences in Pale Waves’ work. But The 1975 have been one of the most successful indie bands in recent years – so why not take a leaf out of their book. It certainly seems to be working, after being named 5th in the ‘Sound of 2018’ and now setting sail on a North American tour, 2018 is certainly going to be big year.

The grungey look of Baron-Gracie, and fellow band member Ciara Doran certainly doesn’t quite match their indie-pop tunes but we still love it. Fuck it, wear whatever you want – why not?

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4. The Big Moon

Photograph by Justin Higuchi

You can’t pick out the one fabulous woman in this band – they are all wonderful. Not only does their music rock hard but The Big Moon have a way with words, writing interesting lyrics which hold interesting stories. The smooth lower register vocals from Juliette Jackson in tracks such as ‘Sucker‘ and ‘Formidable‘ give the band something different to your average shrill female rock singer.

Their debut album ‘Love in 4th Dimension’ has got pumping drums in ‘Silent Movie Susie’ and softer more melancholy vibes in ‘Zeds’. It was produced by Catherine Marks, who has worked with bands such as The Killers, Foals and Wolf Alice – See? Women really are great.

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5. Goat Girl


This all female four-piece is bringing back the 80’s DIY ethos in their music – grungey vocals and muddy guitar riffs. They’ve got something about them and it seems very effortless. Watch the Strano Session above and just picture yourself kicking back at an after party and just absorbing that guitar riff when it hits.

Following single releases in 2017 of ‘Scream’, ‘Cracker Drool‘ and ‘Crow Cries‘ they are grabbing 2018 by heading off for a UK tour starting in March. Be sure not to miss it!

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6. Esmé Dee Hand-Halford & Sidonie B Hand-Halford – The Orielles

Photograph by Paul Hudson

Two sisters Esmé Dee Hand-Halford and Sidonie B Hand-Halford along with fellow bandmate Henry Carlyle Wade form the grunge-infused indie rock band from Halifax. The Orielles give you a bit of everything – funky rhythms, jangly guitar and smooth indie-pop vocals all placed so pleasingly on top of the slick drum beats of Sidonie B Hand-Halford. There’s even some Happy Monday vibes in there.

The diversity of their music can really be seen the remix’s of their singles ‘Sugar Tastes like Salt‘ and ‘Let Your Dogtooth Grow Warm‘ – which make you want to groove.

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7. Dream Wife

These punk queens just made an appearance at a Maida Vale session with Annie Mac after BBC Radio 1 have supported them making them Hottest Record – and boy did they kill it. Showcasing the energetic performances of their newest single ‘Hey Heartbreaker’ which includes powerful female backing vocals and killer opening riff, and also their groovy interpretation of Dua Lipa’s ‘New Rules’. Listen to tracks such as ‘Let’s Make Out‘ to understand the wildness that could break out at one of their gigs.

Be sure not to miss out on their debut album being released on January 26th 2018.

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8. Laura Hayden – Anteros

With heavy new-wave influences this indie-pop band will make you want to party. With newest tracks ‘Bonnie‘ and ‘Love‘ you will see why they are gaining popularity – with hazy vocals and clean pop guitar riffs, it makes the perfect indie pop package. Songs inspired by relationships and drinking really do make a great combination.

2017 was a good year for Anteros: releasing the ‘Drunk EP’ along with a number of singles, releasing a line of good-looking merch, and heading off on tour with Yonaka. 2018 will be bigger for sure.

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9. Soph Nathan – Our Girl

Soph Nathan of The Big Moon is making a double feature on our list with her other band ‘Our Girl’. The ‘Normally -EP’ released in 2016 illustrates the more emotional lyrics of self-doubt and sending yourself mad because you don’t know what others are thinking. But at the same time supplies us with big guitar sounds and drums that keep it driving.

After spending the last of 2017 touring with Marika Hackman and creating quite a ruckus, we cannot wait for them to support Wanda’s Tracks’ firm favourite The Magic Gang later this year.

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10. Jen Hingley – False Advertising

Not only is Hingley a killer front woman but her and fellow band mate Chris Warr swap instrument roles during live sets, placing her as the drummer of the group. These tight garage rockers have been sharing the fuzz in America and UK over the past year- and will continue to do so to gain the bigger audience they quite rightly deserve.

The release of their EP ‘I Would Be so Much Happier If I Just Stopped Caring’ demonstrated that the DIY feel to their music is still present even though they are developing a cleaner sound.

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Find all of these bands in our ‘Ladies Who Rock’ playlist below:


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