For those who ask somebody to explain the punk band the Linda Lindas, it’s all however assured that their response will embody the phrase “cool.” Eloise Wong, Bela Salazar, and Lucia and Mila de la Garza have been enjoying punk music collectively for 4 years, and but they vary in age from simply 11 to 17. To say that they’re precocious is an understatement: The younger musicians have already signed to Epitaph Information, and have opened for his or her riot grrrl forebear Bikini Kill. And by some means they’ve managed to perform all this whereas staying at school. In actual fact, Wong was in the course of a lesson on Zoom when she realized that a video of them performing their hit “Racist, Sexist Boy” had gone viral, prompting a flood of reward from the likes of Kathleen Hanna, Hayley Williams, Questlove, Thurston Moore, Tom Morello, and Flea. Simply think about how far they’ll go as soon as their time frees up post-graduation.
Within the 4 years since all of you—Lucia de la Garza, 15; Mila de la Garza, 11; Bela Salazar, 17; Eloise Wong, 14—began enjoying collectively, you’ve gone viral with a efficiency of your slicing breakout music, “Racist, Sexist Boy,” and have opened for riot grrrl icons like Bikini Kill. You’re an acclaimed punk band, however you’re additionally 4 center and excessive schoolers who certainly simply need to be youngsters. How do you strike that stability?
Lucia de la Garza: Truthfully, I like having a spot like college to go to for a way of normalcy. There, I can concentrate on one thing else apart from the band.
Bela Salazar: This is sort of a once-in-a-lifetime alternative, you recognize?
Eloise Wong: For me, life in school has been just about the identical. [Laughs]
Your debut album is titled Rising Up. And when you all come from artistic households—Lucia and Mila’s dad is a Grammy-winning music producer; Eloise’s dad and mom have been a part of the influential Asian-American tradition journal Large Robotic; and Bela’s dad and mom work in design and visible results—this should all appear very totally different. Have you ever all been pressured to mature rapidly?
BS: I really feel like I grew up actually quick due to the pandemic, as a result of I used to be spending all this time on my own. However on the similar time, it’s like I misplaced two years.
LD: You’ll be able to’t management once you develop up. And that’s form of scary to consider. Since you’re like, What if I’m not able to develop up? What if I can’t do it? There are such a lot of what-ifs. It’s overwhelming.
EW: I don’t actually find out about rising up sooner, however we’re positively loads busier!
Does your life change in a single day once you go viral?
LD: It’s actually bizarre, as a result of all we noticed have been numbers on Instagram going up. It was form of arduous to understand from behind a display that there have been individuals really curious about what we needed to say.
EW: I used to be on Zoom college and bought an e mail from Mila: “We’re going viral!” We performed [famed L.A. punk venue] the Scent just lately, which was our first present because the pandemic began, and plenty of individuals turned up. It was cool to see that there have been really individuals behind these numbers.
LD: I used to be like, Oh my gosh, there’s little infants right here! Individuals are taking infants to their first present, and it’s ours! I couldn’t imagine that.
The place do you draw inspiration in your songs?
EW: Normally, I’m impressed to jot down lyrics first, as a result of I’m offended about one thing and need to handle it. My buddy Phranc, who’s a legendary punk musician and a Linda Lindas supporter, advised me that writing songs is like utilizing a muscle: For those who hold doing it, it can solely get stronger.
BS: Julieta Venegas, Biela, and Los Blenders have been a few of my largest influences in music, as a result of they sing in Spanish, which is superior, but in addition as a result of all of their songs are so rocking, and but so totally different!
How conscious have been you of the historical past behind the riot grrrl motion? You’re now part of its trajectory.
EW: Rising up, we had all the time listened to bands like Bikini Kill and Sleater-Kinney and different riot grrrl stuff. And we additionally got here up on these exhibits my dad and mom would placed on to lift cash for my college’s music program; a bunch of bands from the L.A. punk scene would play, just like the Dils and the Alley Cats. It’s actually cool to be a part of that historical past, and likewise a part of this group of people that simply love making music.
You latterly performed on late-night TV and had a five-night stint in New York. To not point out you’ve gotten a gig developing in Japan. But you guys appear preternaturally calm about all of the mayhem swirling round you.
Mila de la Garza: I’m simply making an attempt to concentrate on what’s occurring proper now, letting issues play out. So long as it’s enjoyable, that’s all that issues.
LD: I believe we’re beginning to belief our instincts extra. We’re not essentially going to our dad and mom and being like, “What do you suppose? Is that this good?” No, it’s like, “That is occurring. We’ve talked to one another, and we’re good. Now let’s do that!”
Hair by Dylan Chavles at MA+ Group; make-up by Grace Ahn at Julian Watson Company. Set design by Lauren Machen at Lalaland Artists.
Photograph assistants: Jorge Solorzano, Nick Tooman, Chris Whitaker; retouching: D-Contact; style assistant: Antonio Soto; hair assistant: Alison DeMoss; make-up assistant: Christina Roberson; set assistant: Kevin Carniero; tailor: Irina Tshartaryan; manufacturing assistant: Asher Gardner; particular thanks: the Revery LA.