Anton Mink
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Anton Mink


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"Its Not Paranoia"

It's Not Paranoia


"I do sometimes feel like I'm not taken seriously by other bands," says Chloa Mardis, lead singer of Lousville-based soul-punk band Anton Mink. "But honestly, I don't care."

That Mardis would feel disregarded is surprising, because Anton Mink's music demands respect. Take the song "Unhappy," off the band's self-titled, self-released debut album: It boldly begins with a single guitar chord followed by a thick bass line. Then the drums crash in, creating the song's musical backbone, but it's not until Mardis starts singing that "Unhappy" sounds complete. Her throaty vocals growl over the bass dominating the song, begging for attention — which for Mardis, 28, is the root of her problem.

As the female front-woman for an all-male band, she knows she's not getting the respect she deserves.

"I've noticed here that a band will come out, it's all guys, it's fine, it's normal," she says. "If we come out, we're automatically a female-fronted band."

What Mardis faces is a typical problem for female lead singers. While the novelty of having a woman up front gains attention for the band — think of Gwen Stefani from ska-punk outfit No Doubt, to whom Mardis laments she is often compared — it also becomes the band's calling card. Rather than being recognized as a great singer or talented songwriter, Mardis is a memorable musician because, well, she's a girl.

A native Kentuckian, Mardis never intended to join an all-male band; she just wanted more creative control over her music. She started out in the Louisville scene by laying vocal tracks for underground hip-hop artists and dancing at local hip-hop events, where she pop-and-locked. But she was always frustrated working with DJs because she had little musical input.

"You only get to write so much of the hook," she says. "So what I wanted to do is find a kind of music I could sing with, so I could write [my own] lyrics."

Three years ago, she answered an ad in a local newspaper from a band looking for a singer, and she found bass player Anton Z. The pair began playing acoustic sets together around Louisville with a just a bass and vocals. They recorded a few of these songs, like "Stump Her Clock," where Mardis croons over a funk-inspired bass line, channeling the jazz singers (like Nina Simone) she idolizes. She sings about markedly feminine things, like being approached by a man at a party: "Went to a party / Wasn't there for a while / When this little boy told me that he liked my smile."

Although Anton Mink gained notice around Louisville for these acoustic sets — "It was an angle, the rock band without the guitar," says Mardis — the band remained on the back burner while Anton played in other bands and Mardis kept dancing. When Mardis injured her back and wrist in a car wreck two years ago and could no longer dance, she decided to focus on the band. She quickly found drummer Gerome Smith, and Anton Mink recorded its first album a year ago. In April of this year, the band added guitarist Andy Jack. The band's sound is a catchier, more even-keeled version of the three-piece punk outfit the Gossip: Mardis' voice is honed and controlled, just as soulful but more steady than the Gossip's outspoken front-woman Beth Ditto.

Despite Anton Mink's other accomplishments, like creating record label Rose Island in order to self-release the band's first album, Mardis says her gender never goes unnoticed or unmentioned when Anton Mink plays shows. In fact, she'd say it's an issue "all the time." A thin, tattooed blonde, Mardis claims she's been taken advantage of when it comes time for club owners to pay for gigs.

That part of the problem, she admits, comes from the Louisville scene, where indie rock bands like Anton Mink aren't highly regarded. "The biggest band to come out of Louisville in a while is My Morning Jacket," she says, referring to the country-infused indie band fronted by Jim James. "When they first started out here, nobody even went to their shows. There were like two people there."

Even though the Louisville scene is tough, Mardis succeeds in the man's world of rock music because she can act like a man. She does all the booking and promotions for Anton Mink, including sending out demos to radio stations and record labels. While she admits an affinity for singers like Amy Winehouse, her main vocal inspiration comes from male singers like the Doors' Jim Morrison and the Misfits' Glenn Danzig. She writes take-crap-from-no-one lyrics on songs like "Monster Trucks": "No longer an amusement / You're wasting my time / You can move on / Already said goodbye." Her voice is sexy and throaty but also more masculine: She holds a deeper tone and strings her words together quickly, losing the slow melodic drawl that makes vocalists like Billie Holliday sound feminine.

What makes Mardis' vocals so powerful is the drive behind them: Listen closely to her lyrics and the female angst becomes clear. On the track "Everything," she laments feeling trapped, possibly by odds stacked against her as a female musician, "It's not paranoia / And there's no one to console ya." Consolation or not, this is one front-woman who won't fade into the background.

Anton Mink at Brooklyn Nights on Friday, Nov. 16, at 9 pm. $5. 835-4177.

Publication Date: 11/14/07

- The Pacific Northwest Inlander

"Top Albums of 2007"

Anton Mink- This music is very close to being straight on drum and bass with smokey vocals but I enjoy it way too much to be straight d&b. These Louisville,KY rockers released their self-titled album on Rose Island Records and I'd say the highlight of this band is the growl that comes from the leading lady Chloa. Vocals don't get much more ruff and sexy! -

"Anton Mink Music Review"

If you’re one of those people that like to experience new and different things this album is for you. The female voice is unique and draws you in and if that’s not enough for you the music is overwhelming. “Monster Trucks” is the second of twelve tracks and has a slight dark mysteriousness to it. The low key drum playing and the rigorous bass strums accentuate her raspy vocals uttering some fantastic lyrics. Sticking with the truck theme they deliver a brilliant tune in “Truck Stop”. Chloa allows her vocal range to shine. The musical set up is pretty lofty yet simple giving it that perfect aura to jam out to. “Blood Clote” has the deep and dark bass lines almost reminiscent of some classic Ozzy Osbourne. The use of some shakers and blocks add to the flavor from the percussion standpoint. The lyrics are intense and sung masterfully. As the song goes on it kind of embraces a slight reggae vibe to it. A well rounded album full of some excitement, twists, turns and a lot of passion, you should give it a spin.

Review By: Geoff Dellinger

- Entertainment World-US

"Yabba-Anton Mink by Clovis Monkey"

Read reviews for Louisville Kentucky band Anton Mink, and the point of reference is almost universally cited is Gwen Stefani of No Doubt. It's not hard to see why, given that there are three guys in the band, and a blonde singer. Lazy, lazy, lazy, though - as that's where the similarities end, at least on the strength of the four songs on display here. There's blues, metal, jazz, and soul all thrashed into a simple, effective and thoroughly unique sound. I'm hooked.

Yabba, the opening track, is a driving rock tune that comes across as some twisted Southern Baptist prayer meeting as soon as talented vocalist Chloa M. comes in singing "Church of Deliverance, proper demands, ya'll get up and clap your hands!". The lyrics, in common with all the tracks, are surreal and broad-stroked, and all the better for it. Anton Mink through words and music conjure up vivid images that you can tap your feet to/ rock your socks off as the turn may take you. At the risk of falling into a rorshach, Yabba seems to me to ooze sex, shame, and sweat. Gwen Stefani my arse, the point of reference here is Jim Morrison, replacing the effete tinkling of Ray Manzarek's organ with a muscular and lean combination of bass, guitar, and drums, all of whom know exactly where to come in - and stay out - for the benefit of the song.

And it's this respect for the overall song that impresses me so much with Anton Mink. The four band members are all talented in their own field, but none demand the spotlight. This is a band unit that combine to produce a well-defined and precise thing, a song. My personal favourite, by a long shot, is Armies which is brave, bold and catchy. Brave, because the song ignores traditional song structures. It starts with a refrain, that's almost a nursery-rhyme in its simplicity and repetition, dominated by Anton Z.'s bass line. Wordless vocals open the song, with shades of Dolores O'Riordan from the Cranberries, before Chloa M. establishes a call and response structure with stripped back lyrics that, say so much with so little.

"How you doing? Where you going? How have you been? Never thought I would have to see you again. Has it been long enough for us to be friends, because we can't go back to where it began."
Then, as if being called for support, the guitars and drums come in and change the song radically. It all seems natural, but head turning at the same time, like the opening moments of a hallucination when you click that something is distorted and strange. What the song is about, I don't know, but it works so well that it's haunted me for days now.

The band were initially formed as a duo, when bass player Anton Z. hooked up, musically, with Chloa M. in Louisville Kentucky. He was a veteran of the local punk scene, while she had spent time singing with various drumm n' bass djs. As a duo they started attracting attention - not least for the novel approach of eschewing guitars. Thankfully, though, at a certain point guitarist Andy Jack joined up, whose heavy but soulful playing helps emphasise the raw strength of Chloa M.'s vocals and lyrics without overwhelming. In every song, under the dominant melody there's a groove and subtlety going on that catches the ear on subsequent listens - precisely thanks to Jack.

And groove may just be the best term to describe the band - bass heavy, rythmic, down and dirty. Listening to them is like scratching an itch. Much of the groove is thanks, as well, to the intelligent drumming of Germoe (don't ask me for second names, the band's press kit goes for the informal).

Truck Stop is gentler and dreamy, but always retains a shade of danger as the singer tells us

At the truck stop baby they got plenty of things to eat
You better watch those pockets for the cops never walk their beat
They're all fueled by low grade lemonade while lot lizrds are licking it up in the shade
well dead men don't talk and they surely don't play no games

It's like the soundtrack to the trippiest film you've ever seen.

Rounding things up is Monster Trucks, which, to this reviewer, is the weakest song on display. It sounds like a jam, and misses that spark that the other songs here have in abundance. That's not to say that it's bad, just not brilliant. Because that's exactly what the other three tracks here are - Brilliant.

- ThreeMonkeys Online Reviews

"Anton Mink"

Straight out of Ali's hometown of Louisville, Kentucky, Anton Mink are a relatively young outfit but the individual members have plenty of experience. Founding member and bassist Anton Z. began forming the band in that classic way; an advert in a local music publication. In 2004, vocalist and bombshell Chloa Mardis responded and the nucleus of Anton Mink began. After adding a guitarist and drummer, the band began playing locally and, in '06, managed to get this their debut album recorded. A typical road for most bands, to be certain. But this is far from typical music.

Anton are stuck in the past and not stuck in the past. Their tone screams classic rock; from the fuzzy riffs and funky basslines to Chloa's Joplinesque vocals, there's a feel of psychadelic jamband all over these songs. Ample amounts of funk, groove and rhythmatic soul drown these down-homers with the spirit of a possibly better time for rock and roll. There is also an underlying punk influence; it can be heard in their more agressive tracks, numbers like "Unhappy" and opener "Everything". Best songs are the endlessly catchy and moody "Daddy Long Legs" and the redneck anthem "Truck Stop".

A band with many accomplishments, at this young age, has a future brighter than many others. They've been all over college and local radio, and this s/t album was voted one of the best of 2007 by UC Berkley KALX and the Undiscovered Radio Network. I can attest to the quality of Anton Mink's music; groove-heavy jam-oriented rock, with a considerable amount of smokey back-room sleaze and the nostalgic feel of a garage band brought back from about '67. When you think of all the bands out there attempting to recapture the sounds of yesterday while keeping it modern and relevant, you're not likely to find many who are better at it than Anton Mink. Check 'em out.

Kevin Sellers - Music Emissions

"Independent Spotlight"

Anton Mink

Retro Gwen Stefani-esque vocals plus catchy punk-rock melodies plus an overall punchy attitude equals Anton Mink. Singer/lyricist Chloa M's voice is rife with angst of a familiar nature, especially when she sings, "Don't think about the things they say/Get to stomping while you're walking/Who needs their opinion anyway?" Fun but also meaningful, their sonds are definitely repeat worthy.
Written by Alternative Amy
pg. 86 - Beyond Race Magazine

"A Flat-Out Put-Down Rave-Up"

Anton Mink is a band from Louisville, Kentucky. Two very different people met through an ad in a local alternative magazine, then they met two other very different people through an ad posted at a local music store. In October 2006, the band recorded its debut album in Glasgow, Kentucky. The full length album was released on the band's own label in April 2007. This release cranks out some seriously consistent, and consistently fun garage rock. A mash-up of inspired beats, new-wave rhythm and garage rock guitars, the self-titled CD is a tight, cohesive output that's as intriguing as it is good, but it's also a lot of fun. The first two songs on the disc define the term "sure-fire". Everything, the first song, comes at you from all directions, full of snarling low-slung riffs right in the middle that explode like a nuclear warhead on the choruses. Monster Trucks follows and uses a similar formula and really sets the tone of the CD. However, on the third track, Anton Mink takes a directional one-eighty with the ethereal Daddy Long Legs, which is a great change of pace and, along with Armies and Unhappy is one of the highlights of this release. Chloa's vocals on this track are heartrendingly amazing. Another favorite, Truck Stop can best be described as Liz Phair meets Lucinda Williams, and Unhappy, well that's my favorite song on the CD; simply put it grabs you by the balls from the opening chords and squeezes until you are nearly breathless. If you are looking for a flat-out, put-down rave-up, then Anton Mink is a disc that is a must have for your CD collection. The instrumentation is super tight, the production is remarkable without the studio super-hype of over-driven and monotonously woven melodies so prevalent in music today, and the bad-ass vocals deliver angst, longing, despair, guilt, and a little raw hatred. Memorize the songs... they will quickly grow on you, and infect you, and take you over. - Sonicbytes Magazine

"News from The Pit-Anton Mink"

Anton Mink:
When I heard that this band didn't have a guitarist at their live shows, I was tripping. A rock band without guitar is insane. How would they pull it off? I'm sitting here listening to the CD by Anton Mink and I admit I like it a lot more than I thought I would. A few of the songs have guitar on them, but mostly playing rhythm. It's not too my usual taste but it grew on me. Description? Well, uuuummm, it's a sort of alternative punk, indie rock band with blues and funk elements intertwined. Whew! That effort took the rest of my brain cells. The voice of female singer Chloa is a pleasant journey into a laidback, sexy type show from which happy thoughts of acid flashbacks, swirling colors and hippy rockers abound. Their CD, 819 Black Dot Rd., is a punk rock, jazzy endeavor that definitely has some pumping grooves, regardless of the lack of heaviness. Vocally, Chloa reminds me of the singer from No Doubt. She's got a bluesy, soulful, 1920s ballroom bandleader type voice at times, then it's a punk rock whine, sometimes an Elvis-y roll of the tongue, then it's a Jamaican growl with fantastic reverb added. She's as cool as a silk sheet in air conditioning on a hot summer night.

"Yabba" is a bluesy funk punk song with strong bass line that borders on heavy. "Truck Stop" is neat and memorable, especially on the chorus: "waaaay down on 65." The clean, effects-driven guitar on this song fits in well with the bumping bass lines. "Armies" is the No Doubt-sounding song.. Good songwriting with a strong punk feeling. A groovy tune, nonetheless.

The Jamaican-sounding "Blood Clots" has my foot tappin. I think I'm going to go see them in concert.. If I had one complaint, it would be that there isn't enough guitar, but I'm a guitarist, so maybe I'm just a little biased..

- LouisvilleMusicNews

"Midpoint Music Festival"

Anton Mink (Louisville, Ky.)


Funky grooves and big beats lay the foundation for the sultry and sometimes sinister vocals of Chloa M. Bassist Anton Z.'s catchy low-end licks take up a good portion of their bandwidth. In fact, they played as a guitar-less trio for some time, which also gave Chloa the opportunity to get used to being in the melodic driver's seat.

You'll Dig It If You Dig: Elastica, Yeah Yeah Yeahs, PJ Harvey. (EW)

- CityBeat-Cincinnatti

"Anton Mink"

anton mink

Band: Anton Mink
Genre: Rock, Indie, Alternative
Album: Anton Mink
Engineered by David Barrick
Recorded at Barrick Studios in Glasgow, KY by David Barrick
Mixed by David Barrick
Mastered by David Barrick
Produced by Anton Mink and David Barrick

The next time you see that paper flyer style ad at the supermarket with little pre-cut strips of paper labeled with the same phone number 15 times over think of Anton Mink. This three-piece from Louisville met in a similar manner. The first two rendezvoused via an ad in a local alternative magazine and the third was found via an ad posted at a local music store. Who would have thought that such small actions would lead to such big sounds?

Chloa Mardis fronts Anton Mink with her sultry vocals that range from throat seduction to sweet, soft melody to all out riot girl rock, in your face growlings. At times her voice sounds akin to a rock version of Gwen Stefani and at others as though she's channeling Debbie harry. Anton Z. hooks us with guitars/bass while T. Smyth keeps us in beat, literally, as he covers the drums/percussion front.

Anton Mink opens up with "Everything". An upbeat intro leads into the vox from Mardis as she rants into the mic of the disappointing reality that there are some people out there who truly think that because they've got money that they've got everything. With lyrics like, "in your little life/ you've got everything/ everything figured out/ figured out/ well, you're so smart cause you/ liked your party/ you live your life/ you've got everything...questioning everything comes from the fear of finding out all the things that you hold dear/ are insignificant because you were livin' pretty," it's easy to see the cynicism and embittered nature of the track.

The album continues in a dark, moody and sarcastic nature through a heavy use of rock rhythms and angry vocals.

One of the stand outs on Anton Mink's self-titled release is "Armies," a reflection on the status of a broken relationship. The repeating chorus, "how you doin? where you goin'?/how have you been?/never thought i'd would have to see you again/has it been long enough for us to be friends/cause we can't go back to where we began," directly places the emphasis on the unspoken conflict and the subsequent lingering lack of resolution. Another is the reggae-tinged "Blood Clots", complete with cowbell (More Cowbell!!). Mardis sings of a strange drunken night, "forever never i'll be with you/forever never i'll be true/forever never i'll be with you i'lll be true/til hit the pavement/it was alcholic statement/couldn't get myself up/i need help/i need help from another cup."

Overall, the album has quite an enjoyable range from rockin' rage to laid-back jams. With such a variety of energy intensity in the songs it's quite easy to assume that Anton Mink puts on a great live show that will satisfy the majority of audiences. The band is currently still on tour spreading their alternative natured goodness. They'll be playing tonight back in Louisville, KY among many shows in the Louisville area in the next few months but if you're in the York, PA or Toronto, Ontario areas keep on the lookout as well.,

- Undercurrent Magazine


Anton Mink's self-titled debut CD was released in 2007 we consistently have our tracks streaming on and 93.1 The Fox in Louisville,KY(through undiscovered radio network)
KERX, 95.3 FM, in Ft. Smith, AR; WAMX, 106.3 FM, in Huntington, WV; WEGW, 107.5 FM, in Wheeling, WV; and WHBR, 103.1 FM, in Parkersburg, WV ,790 AM in Louisville,WOBC 91.5 FM(Oberlin,OH), www.insonidoradio/ in Madrid
Kalx UC Berkley college radio station(where we made the top 15!),Radio X or WLIX FM in New York which broadcasts at frequencies 104.5, 94.7 and 94.9,,,WZNZ1460AM(Jacksonville,FL),,,, KSCU 103.3(Santa Clara,CA) 365) or 88.7 FM in Whitesburg,KY 91.9 WFPK (Louisville,KY)

Our album was declared "Best Self-Titled Independent Release of 2007" by Undiscovered Radio Network!

Named one of KALX 90.7 FM (Berkeley) Top Faves of 2007

Featured artist of February 2008 of Pongid Radio
Featured artist Spetember 2008 of Sonic Jive



Strange to be a musician but not on the scene so where else do you go to find a gig and start making sweet love to people's ears? Chloa looked in the local alternative paper to find a band to sing with after tiring from singing one line choruses' for local hip-hop acts and drum n bass dj's and found Anton Mink ready for a female singer. It was a mellow sort of surf rock with a punk principle due to the influence of bands such as The Replacements and Jane's Addiction on Anton Z.(Bass) and it seemed at first to take a vague shape of literal drum n bass because until after their debut album,Anton Mink, was released in 2007 they did not have a geeeetar at their live shows. Andy Jack, a trained jazz musician, joined up similarly except this time it was an ad on a school of music wall that beckoned him into the group. Unfortunately they have no such luck with drummers and are currently auditioning to find another to replace Jerome from their first album but soon there will be a 2nd album to contend with that should reek of a funkier style, all that jazz that ooozes from Andy while still holding onto some punkrock rootage and major attitude from Chloa.