Lydia Lunch

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Born as Lydia Anne Koch, on June the 2nd, 1959, in Rochester, New York.

She is a singer, poet, writer, actress and self-empowerment speaker whose career was spawned by the New York No Wave scene.

The Boston Phoenix named Lydia Lunch "one of the 10 most influential performers of the 1980s".

Her work typically features provocative and confrontational noise music delivery and has maintained an anti-commercial ethic operating independently of major labels and distributors. Lunch's moniker was given to her by the Rock band Willy DeVille because she stole food for her friends.


She moved to New York City from Rochester at the age of 16 and eventually moved into a communal household of artists and musicians.

After befriending Alan Vega and Martin Rev at Max's Kansas City, she founded the short-lived but influential No Wave band Teenage Jesus and the Jerks, with James Chance. Both Teenage Jesus and the Jerks and the Contortions, Chance's subsequent band, played on the No Wave compilation No New York, produced by Brian Eno.

No new york album cover.jpg

Lunch later appeared on two songs on James White and the Blacks album, Off-White.

James White and the Blacks album Off-White.jpg

Lunch's solo career featured collaborations with musicians such as J. G. Thirlwell, Kim Gordon, Thurston Moore, Nick Cave, Marc Almond, Billy Ver Planck, Steven Severin, Robert Quine, Sadie Mae, Rowland S. Howard, Michael Gira, The Birthday Party, No Trend, Einstürzende Neubauten, Sonic Youth, Oxbow, Die Haut, Omar Rodriguez-Lopez, Black Sun Productions, and French band Sibyl Vane, who put one of her poems to music.

In 1983 she formed The Immaculate Consumptive with Nick Cave, J. G. Thirlwell, and Marc Almond.

In the mid-1980s, she formed her own recording and publishing company called "Widowspeak Productions" (also known as just "Widowspeak"), on which she continues to release her own material, from music to spoken word.

Two albums published by Lunch's label were released in 2013: Collision Course & Trust The Witch, by Big Sexy Noise (released on Cherry Red), and Retrovirus (released on Interbang Records); both albums are by Lunch's musical projects.

Lunch released her studio album Smoke in the Shadows in November 2004, through Atavistic Records and Breakin Beats, after a six-year break from music. Nels Cline, the lead guitarist of alternative rock band Wilco, was featured on the album.

In 2009 Lunch formed the band Big Sexy Noise. The group features Lunch on vocals, James Johnston (guitars), Terry Edwards (organ, saxophone), and Ian White (drums). Johnston, White and Edwards are members of the British band Gallon Drunk. A six-track eponymous EP was released on June 1, 2009, through Sartorial Records, and included a cover of Lou Reed's song "Kill Your Sons," as well as "The Gospel Singer", a song co-written with Gordon. The debut, self-titled album, Big Sexy Noise, was released in 2010, followed by Trust The Witch in 2011. For both albums, Lunch and her band completed tours throughout Europe.

In 2010, The Jeffrey Lee Pierce Sessions Project launched We Are Only Riders, the first of a series of four albums featuring Pierce's previously-unreleased works-in-progress. The album features interpretations of Pierce's work by friends, collaborators, and admirers, including Lunch. Lunch also contributed to the second album from the project, The Journey is Long, which was released in April 2012.

Although the Pierce Sessions Project's third and final album, The Task Has Overwhelmed Us, was due for release in late 2012, the schedule was changed after the release of the second installment. Glitterhouse Records, the label producing the collection, instead released a third album titled Axles & Sockets in May 2014, on which Lunch performs "The Journey Is Long" with Pierce's recordings. The label explained that the third album has become the "penultimate" full-length release of the Project, but did not name the final album, or its release date.

Lunch released the album Retrovirus (also the name of the band Lunch plays with) in 2013 on Interbang Records and ugEXPLODE (the vast majority of the album tracks are published by Widowspeak). Together with band members Weasel Walter, Algis Kizys, and Bob Bert, Lunch performed a show following the album's release at the Bowery Electric venue in New York City, US, in May 2013.


Solo Artist

Solo Albums List

  1. Queen of Siam (1980)
  2. 13.13 (1981)
  3. Honeymoon in Red (1987)
  4. Unearthly Delights (1992)
  5. Twisted (1992)
  6. Matrikamantra (1997)
  7. Smoke in the Shadows (2004)
  8. Retrovirus (live, 2013)
  9. Urge to Kill (as Lydia Lunch Retrovirus) (2015)

Solo EPs List

  1. Drunk on the Pope's Blood/The # Agony Is the Ecstacy (split with The Birthday Party, 1982)
  2. In Limbo (1984)

Solo Single

  1. "No Excuse" (1997)

Compilation Albums List

  1. Hysterie (1986)
  2. Widowspeak (1998)
  3. Deviations on a Theme (2006)

Video Album

  1. Willing Victim (The Audience as Whipping Boy) (live in Graz, Austria, 2004)

Teenage Jesus and the Jerks


Pre Teenage Jesus and the Jerks (1979)

Singles List

  1. "Baby Doll" (1979)
  2. "Orphans" (1979)

Compilation Albums

  1. Teenage Jesus and the Jerks (1979)
  2. Everything (1995)
  3. Shut Up and Bleed (2008)

Beirut Slump

  1. "Try Me" (1979)

8-Eyed Spy

Albums List

  1. 8-Eyed Spy (1981; reissued as Luncheone in 1995)
  2. Live (1981)


  1. "Diddy Wah Diddy" (1980)

Harry Crews

  1. Naked in Garden Hills (1987)

Big Sexy Noise

  1. Big Sexy Noise (2009)
  2. Trust the Witch (2011)


  1. "Some Velvet Morning with Rowland S. Howard (EP, 1982)
  2. The Drowning of Lucy Hamilton with Lucy Hamilton (EP, 1985)
  3. Heart of Darkness with No Trend (EP, 1985)
  4. The Crumb with Thurston Moore (EP, 1987)
  5. Stinkfist with Clint Ruin (EP, 1987)
  6. Don't Fear the Reaper with Clint Ruin (EP, 1991)
  7. Shotgun Wedding with Rowland S. Howard (1991)
  8. Transmutation + Shotgun Wedding Live in Siberia with Rowland S. Howard (1994)
  9. The Desperate Ones with Glyn Styler (EP, 1997)
  10. Champagne, Cocaïne & Nicotine Stains with Anubian Lights (EP, 2002)
  11. Omar Rodriguez Lopez & Lydia Lunch with Omar Rodriguez-Lopez (EP, 2007)
  12. U Turn with Minox (EP, 2008)
  13. Lydia Lunch and Philippe Petit – (2011)
  14. A Fistful of Desert Blues with Cypress Grove (2014)
  15. Twin Horses with Cypress Grove (2014) a split album with Spiritual Front


  1. No New York (1978)
  2. Off White, James White and the Blacks (1979)
  3. Der Karibische Western, Die Haut (EP, 1982)
  4. Thirsty Animal, Einstürzende Neubauten (EP, 1982)
  5. "Boy-Girl", Sort Sol (1983)

Dagger & Guitar, Sort Sol (1983)

  1. "Death Valley '69", Sonic Youth (1984)
  2. A Dozen Dead Roses, No Trend (LP, 1985)
  3. Death Valley '69, Sonic Youth (EP, 1986)
  4. King of the Jews, Oxbow (1991)
  5. 13 Above the Night, My Life With The Thrill Kill Kult (LP, 1993)
  6. Dirty Little Secrets: Music to Strip By, My Life With The Thrill Kill Kult (LP, 1999)
  7. Head On, Die Haut (1992)
  8. Sweat, Die Haut (1992)
  9. Unhealthy, Lab Report (1994)
  10. York, The Foetus Symphony Orchestra (1997)
  11. Brooklyn Bank, Here (1998)
  12. OperettAmorale (compilation tribute album to Bertolt Brecht, 2005)
  13. The Impossibility of Silence, Black Sun Productions (2006)
  14. Ankitoner Metamars, Ankitoner Metamars (2007)
  15. We Are Only Riders, The Jeffrey Lee Pierce Sessions Project (2010)
  16. The Journey Is Long, The Jeffrey Lee Pierce Sessions Project (2012)
  17. Axels & Sockets, The Jeffrey Lee Pierce Sessions Project (2014)
  18. Synthetic Love Dream, David Lackner (2014)

External Links

Lydia Lunch on IMDB