Spotlight: Royal Thunder

11:55pm, Red 7 Patio

Spotlight: Royal Thunder

Listening to Mlny Parsonz cut through the deep, metallic din of Royal Thunder's 2012 full-length bow, CVI, heaped appreciation for the operatic Valkyries' ride of Robert Plant in Led Zeppelin, Rob Halford screaming for vengeance atop Judas Priest, and King Diamond wailing in Mercyful Fate.

"Steve Marriott in Humble Pie," offers the Atlanta quartet's singer.

Precisely: that high, piercing cry acting as lightning rod for sky-cracking atmospheric disturbances. Heavy metal?

"No," counters Parsonz. "I think we're accepted by the metal community and people 'get it.' I can feel the metal, but I don't really hear it. Our original drummer used to call it 'post-apocalyptic blues,' which I thought was really cool."

And yet, when the band finally heard the mixed/mastered/sequenced follow-up to its debut EP on Philly metal indie Relapse Records, even its frontwoman and bassist was taken aback.

"We just sat there in complete silence, and we were like – the words that came out of my mouth – 'Are we really that heavy? When did that happen?' We'd never even realized."

The number of women shredding their larynxes in extreme music might add up only to the "Queens of Noise" trio on the cover of Decibel magazine in 2012, of which Parsonz held up her third, but then she's not exactly prone to fainting or anything.

"Being on the road is tough on your body and mind, your spirit. That's not just females. It's hard. But I know who I am, and I know what I like, and I like the challenge. I like getting on a stage, busting [my] ass. I don't care if someone's offended by me being a female.

"You see that sometimes. Some guys will stand right in front of you when you're playing and look at you like, 'What the fuck are you doing onstage. Get off.'"

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