ROCK Tanya Donnelly

She’s been around for so long, as part of Throwing Muses, The Breeders and Belly, that it seems perfectly natural to see Tanya Donnelly's name emblazoned on a record sleeve. It was only a matter of time before she took the plunge and began releasing records under her own name. Coincidentally, since Throwing Muses have ground to an apparently permanent halt, Donnelly and her half-sister Kristin Hersh are both now facing the world as solo artists.

’We’ve been talking about that,’ Donnelly giggles, ’how stupid it is that we’re both solo now! Stupid? Uh, yeah, the parallel course of our lives.’

After a lacklustre reception to King, the follow-up to big-selling debut Star, unspoken grudges festered until Belly swelled up with noxious gases and popped. ’lnitially, it was musical differences,’ Donnelly says, 'and then that ultimately turned into personal conflicts. There were some problems, definitely. A lot of fighting towards the end. But I’m

other so much.’

The break-up of Belly roughly coincided with marriage to Dean Fisher, formerly Julianna Hatfield's bassist and now occupied musically as well as personally with Donnelly. The couple settled in a leafy part of Cambridge, Massachusetts, with both their families nearby. After such a ’chaotic, head-noisy time’, she says, the quietness of the area was attractive even to a city

girl like her.

’After the split, I didn't touch a guitar for a few months because I was very upset. I didn’t listen to music, I didn’t play the guitar, I didn't want anything around that reminded me of my life.’ massively hip studio Fort Apache, owned by her manager, just down the road, it wasn’t long before she'd written a bunch of new songs - about to be


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released by 4A0 as Lovesongs For Underdogs - and had gone in to cut them with a pickup band including Fisher,

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David Narcizo. Gigs in Britain last November with musicians borrowed from Veruca Salt and Madder Rose, packed full of brand-new songs without a single Belly number in evidence, showed her determination to make

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