Garbage’s Shirley Manson: “We have Billie Eilish to thank for the sudden interest in the girls out of step with pop culture”

“For so long, it seemed like the rebellious girls were being suffocated," she said, while also shouting out Jehnny Beth, Little Simz, Arlo Parks and Billy NoMates

Garbage icon Shirley Manson has heaped praise upon Billie Eilish for giving a voice and a platform to “rebellious girls”.

The frontwoman was speaking to NME when asked about the current crop of talent on her radar, before she noted how now marks “a very exciting time for a wave of new alternative,” and listing Jehnny Beth, Little SimzArlo Parks and Billy NoMates among her favourites before assess the importance of Eilish. 

“For so long, it seemed like the rebellious girls were being suffocated,” Manson told NME. “They weren’t being given any space or attention. I think we have Billie Eilish to thank for the sudden interest once again for the sad girls, the dark girls and the girls who are out of step with the pop culture landscape. That, to me, is exciting because that’s the music I love.”


She continued: “I’m uninterested in love songs. They bore the shit out of me. I love it when Billy NoMates is taking it to the wire; I love it when Little Simz is in everybody’s faces. I love it when these artists are pushing, questioning and presenting a powerful facet of self to the public.”

Garbage, 2021. Credit: Joseph Cultice
Garbage, 2021. Credit: Joseph Cultice

This year has also seen rising star Olivia Rodrigo cite the alt-rock veterans as an influence on her debut album ‘Sour’, while Rina Sawayama also recently told NME that Garbage were inspiring her upcoming second album.

“How do these girls even know about us?” Manson replied. “It’s a mystery, but to have someone like Rina or any generation of women namecheck us is always really gratifying.”

Garbage’s new album ‘No Gods No Masters‘ is out now. In a four-star review, NME concluded: “Seven album and nearly 30 years into their career, these veterans have pulled off a record that’s seductive in its sound and resonant in its message, as well as proving a triumph in showcasing not only the lineage that led to Garbage but also their mastery of alt-tinged dark-pop that led us the likes of Chvrches and Lana Del Rey – with even newbies Rina Sawayama and Olivia Rodrigo counting them as influences.


“It’s no mean feat that ‘No Gods No Masters’ is not only Garbage’s best album in 20 years – at least – but one that could only have been made now.”

The band will be touring the UK with Blondie in November.

Billie Eilish meanwhile, releases her hugely-anticipated second album ‘Happier Than Ever’ on July 30, before embarking on a world tour in 2022.

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