"Finally, a chick band that doesn't suck!" - Justin of Gary 84 Originally formed in 1997 in a one-bedroom apartment in Thousand Oaks, California, Brainspoon, the brainchild of wife-husband team Daphne Vandervalk and Chris Diez, was concocted via the inspiration of '80s punk rock and a taxidermy manual. Many years, many songs, and many band members later, the perfect volatile artistic mix finally came together, and Brainspoon has exploded into a fire-breathing powerhouse of female-fronted rock 'n' roll ferocity. With Daphne on lead vocals and Chris on drums, the band has vacillated from a mostly-male to a mostly-female lineup, and settled on what works best - two women up front with a meaty male rhythm section. Sharing the front of the stage with Daphne is Michelle Balderrama, who, having joined as lead guitarist in 2005 with no previous band experience, has evolved into a formidable superstar of rock guitar - frequently being dubbed by observers as "the new Joan Jett." What makes Brainspoon unique among many co-ed bands is that the females are truly the main creative force driving the band - songwriters and lyricists, not merely eye candy. Long-time member Tom Underhill lays on the heavy with his buzzing bass, while newest member Link Oblivion signed on in 2007 to make the live guitars sound as beefy as the recordings. Brainspoon is a band that just won't quit. Having truly paid their dues, Brainspoon has spent the years just under the Los Angeles radar, honing their sound, fine-tuning their live shows, and perfecting their songwriting. Having withstood several setbacks that would have killed a lesser band, Brainspoon has emerged all the more confident, professional and unified, and is poised to show the world what they've got, as their newly-released 2008 album, "No Damage," attests. "No Damage" continues the Brainspoon tradition of well-crafted rock 'n' roll songs, rich with melodies and shameless hooks while never devolving into pop syrup sappiness. Daphne and Michelle sing like women, and sometimes like men, but never like "girls," differentiating their sound from the majority of female-fronted acts. The music on this album is heavy, but not heavy-handed, dark without being depressing, and clean enough for radio station airplay and small children everywhere. It's varied yet cohesive textures include several booty-shakin' rock 'n' roll songs (Bleeding Black & White), retro '80s New Wave with vintage keyboards (Don't Turn Around), low-key yet cryptically powerful seethers (White Knights), and straight-ahead pile-drivers (Lost in Time).