Doll skin to rock out neon rose

Hailed by the Phoenix New Times as one of the “10 Best Bands and Musicians in Phoenix Under the Age of 21,” Doll Skin will bring their spunky jams to Neon Rose on Monday, Feb. 5.

The gals are making a name for themselves as the latest in a lineage of teenage “girl groups” that includes The Runaways, The Donnas and early Go-Gos.

The points of comparison aren’t hard to find. First, there’s that whole age and gender thing, although that hasn’t stood in the way of the band covering Fugazi’s “The Waiting Room” during live shows. Then there’s the fact that all four bands were discovered and championed on the airwaves by the ageless Rodney Bingenheimer of “Rodney on the ROQ” fame.

Doll Skin have also released two albums and spent a huge amount of time on the road – both as Otep’s opening act and as part of the Warped Tour roster. And yes, they’re still under the age of 21.

“Our career has been filled with us playing with bands that are a lot heavier than us,” said Doll Skin’s Meghan Herring in a recent phone interview. “There’ll be punk bands and hard rock bands and metalcore bands, and we feel like we fit in because we’re kind of a combination of a lot of those.”

While the band’s music places bratty pop-punk front and center, Herring’s lyrics on songs like “So Much Nothing” are darker and more introspective than you might expect: “I’m sitting here in catatonia, I don’t know what to do / Everything here’s so beautiful, my mind’s so ugly, but what’s new?”

Herring, as you may have guessed, is the sensitive one.

“Yeah, absolutely, 100 percent, definitely,” she said with a laugh. “The girls are like, ‘I have feelings too! Just, you know, not a lot of them.’ And I’m like, ‘I have way too many of them, and I can’t control it.’ So yeah, I’m the one that cries the most. And then after I cry, I start writing.”

Fortunately, Herring can take her own anxieties out on her drum kit, on which she’s as adept at classic rock as she is punk rock.

“I’m really inspired by punk drummers like Erik Sandin from NOFX and David Sandström from Refused,” she said, “But I got trained in The Police and Led Zeppelin and The Who, which took a good year and a half. I made sure I knew my roots before I went out and found what I like.”

All of which could help Doll Skin stand the test of time in a world of ever-diminishing attention spans.