The Shondes (taking their name from the Yiddish word for "shame" or "disgrace") are a rock quartet based in Brooklyn, New York, who make dramatic rock music that has been compared to Sleater-Kinney, Patti Smith, and Rasputina. Their instrumentation includes drums (Temim Fruchter), bass (Louisa Solomon), guitar (Ian Brannigan), violin (Elijah Oberman), and powerful, intertwining vocals (Solomon, Fruchter, Oberman).
The Shondes are known for their complex, melodic rock sound combined with rich vocals, and a live show that explodes with energy. Their songwriting fuses the various musical traditions of feminist punk, classical, Jewish, and queercore, while their vocal melodies move effortlessly from anthemic to haunting, textured by the distinct qualities of each of their voices. The result is a unique sound that is both heartbreaking and hopeful. The high energy of their live shows bring audiences along for the ride, with audience members often singing along, dancing, and swaying to the punchy rhythms and soaring melodies.
From their formation, The Shondes have maintained a rigorous tour schedule including 2 national tours, a midwest mini-tour, regular east coast dates, and festivals such as North by Northeast and Homo A Go Go. They have shared the stage with indie luminaries Electrelane, Erase Errata, Amy Ray, Mecca Normal, Joe Lally (Fugazi), and Lesbians on Ecstasy, and others. The band also organizes events, often in partnership with local activist organizations, such as the Jews Against the Occupation Chanukah Ball and the Sylvia Rivera Law Project's Valentine's Day Party. Their debut album, The Red Sea, will be released on January 11, 2008, following a national winter tour.