With a punky ‘can-do’ attitude and a fierce brace of upfront tunes, Mannequin Pussy have turned out one of 2019’s best rock albums. Matching an explosive sound with moments of beauty and vulnerability, Patience has drawn plenty of attention from fans and media alike.

Now, the band are about to set out on a proper European tour, so press interest is picking up again. The band have been home from a US tour for about three weeks, and singer Marisa Dabice has been filling her time with all the usual stuff: “Cooking, kissing, playing Assassin’s Creed Odyssey. Today I’m tie-dyeing a bedsheet set,” she tells me. “Experimenting with bleach painting. Yeah, mostly just tie-dye and fucking up my clothes and writing new songs. Not a bad way to spend my time off.”

This quartet look effortlessly cool, even compared to their hipster rock contemporaries. I wonder if their style is influenced by their hometown’s rich cultural heritage, but Marisa suggests her mum has much to answer for. “She’s got a fantastic fashion sense. Growing up, she just looked like such a bitch compared to all the other moms. And I mean that in the most complimentary way. I grew up in Connecticut, which is not known for outrageous style or even any style at all. Everyone just dresses so… pastel and robotic and boring. My mom was like a fresh breath of black and leather and loud prints.”

Five years in the making, she assures me the finished album’s title isn’t the band being contrary or clever. “Nothing we do is ironic. Everyone is in such a fucking hurry all the time and there’s something to be said for taking your time, shutting out the noise and focusing on your creativity.” Those five years were clearly necessary for the band to develop as a quartet and get the songs to their best possible place.

Their third full-length album Patience is often a visceral listen. It obsesses with both the physical and emotional manifestations of life, labours and love. Marisa is at home offering deeply personal insights to listeners. “I’m not someone who is easily embarrassed. I think artists have a responsibility to bring their stories out from the shadows – to work to rid them of shame and let them transform into something beautiful that can help others to get through their hard times.” She says plenty of people have been through what the band talk about on this album – the only difference is they put the stories to music.

Listening to Patience in full, it offers a purposeful order, each song complementing its neighbour, creating a sense of a cohesive whole. “The sequence is one of my favourite parts of creating an album.

“It’s like a sonic puzzle – each song has a clue in the way it begins and ends, and you have to follow that clue to get it to fit into the right place within the context.” It can be a really difficult process, and the band have had arguments about track listings in the past. Somehow, though, they have always managed to come together and settle those disputes.

Mannequin Pussy are four very different people, who approach everything from different perspectives, and they had to learn how to work well together. These differences give a tangible edge to their music. “I’m constantly in awe of what we make together. It’s a very exciting creative family to be part of.” Soon the Europe tour beckons and the four bring their riotous live show to The Prince Albert on Mon 18 Nov. But don’t expect a faithful recreation of their catalogue. “We’re all about album infidelity. To be too faithful to how the songs are on record is just…too precious for us. The songs, when performed live, have a different feel to them; it’s a new energy and I think it’s much more intense. The album and the live show should be two distinct experiences. One obviously infers the other, but they’re different kinds of magic. “

Mannequin Pussy play Brighton’s The Prince Albert on Mon 18 Nov 2019

www.mannequinpussy.com

Image by Marcus Maddox