PICTURED: From left: Jackson Gallo (drums), Justin McAlister (bass), Madeleine Lucas (vocals and guitar) and Julia Dourthe (lead guitar). Photo courtesy of Lion City Management
by Alicia Doyle
Before Madeleine Lucas had a band, she was a sweet kid writing sweet “poor me” lyrics about some stupid guy that maybe didn’t like her back, or the hurt she felt over a friend’s disloyalty.
“As I got a little bit older and into high school, things changed,” recalled the 17-year-old junior at Newbury Park High School. “I started to get more angry, outspoken, and basically would just sit in my room with my best friend making up fun little songs that would rip all of these bullies to shreds.”
It actually started out as a joke, she noted, “but the songs turned out to be so catchy that people thought we should start a band.”
With that, Lucas — who plays guitar and sings vocals — added a lead guitarist and a drummer, and originally called the band “Sick of Sarah’s” before changing it to Sik Sik Sicks. As the founder of the band, she is the only original member left, with Julia Dourthe of Simi Valley on lead guitar and Zach Levinson of Calabasas on bass.
“We are currently seeking a new drummer as of now,” Lucas said.
So, how to describe the band’s music? “This question is always a little bit weird for me. I never know how to really classify our music,” said the teen, noting that her inspirations have been Hole, Blondie, L7 and ’90s emo grunge, with “driving guitars, loud drums and lyrics that may or may not offend the average person.”
Much of the inspiration for her songs comes from relationships gone wrong, “and ripping people to shreds who deserve it most in the funniest way possible. I can’t stand bullies.”
Some people describe the band’s music as punk or alternative, “but one fan described it best by saying it’s a healthy dose of teenage angst and dark humor, with songs so insanely catchy and provocative, you can’t help but love every single one, which is a feat in today’s generation of disposable punk rock.”
Lucas noted that she’s always been a loner, and tends to get depressed, “so there is a lot of time for me to create. It also helps my emotional state.”
She created Sik Sik Sicks to touch on things that were affecting her and the world around her, such as breakups, broken friendships and bullying.
“Although my songs may come across as mean, they’re really just a way for me to call out bullies and people screwing me over,” she said. “I’m just sick and tired of people treating others like s**t.”
Sik Sik Sicks just “goes against the grain,” she said, “and wants to do the complete opposite of what everybody else is doing. I hope I inspire people to stick up for themselves — and others — and be proud of who they are. Just because somebody else thinks something is cool doesn’t mean it is. In fact, most of the time it isn’t.”
Since the band was formed in 2018, its members have played in numerous venues throughout Los Angeles, including The Wiltern, The Rainbow Room and The Whisky-A-Go-Go. Locally, Sik Sik Sicks has performed in most venues in Ventura, as well as festivals such as Surf Rodeo.
Before the coronavirus forced the cancellation of many public gatherings in Ventura County, the band had several local shows on the schedule, including Rock and Roll Pizza in Camarillo, Greater Goods in Ojai, Conejo Valley Days and the Canyon Club in Agoura Hills. The music scene remains quiet for the time beginning, but once things ramp up again, Sik Sik Sicks will no doubt find its dance card full once again.
“The ultimate goal of Sik Sik Sicks is redefining riot grrrl,” she said, “and after this virus clears . . . to make America Sik again.”
Sik Sik Sicks’ debut EP, Homecoming Whore, is available on all major platforms. For more information, visit siksiksicks.com.