She even dovetailed motherhood and music into her new solo CD, “Diploid Love,” an album she’s promoting in concert at Slim’s tonight.
She points to breast-feeding as an odd kind of influence on the record: “I breast-fed both my kids, and that is a commitment,” says the frank, Los Angeles-based Aussie.
With Orrin, she says, “I got this crazy, industrial-strength breast pump, and it makes a funny noise. ... You can turn it up and change the tempo of it, so I was actually writing songs while I was pumping. I took my inspiration where I could get it!”
The ex-frontwoman of The Distillers and Spinnerette played nearly every instrument herself, except for cameos from Strokes guitarist Nick Valensi, Queens bassist Michael Shuman and Warpaint vocalist Emily Kokal.
On the anthemic tune “Meet the Foetus/Oh the Joy,” Dalle is joined by another rock vixen, Garbage growler Shirley Manson, whom she first befriended while touring together in 2002. “I just marched right into her dressing room and that was it,” she says. “Shirls has a huge, huge heart, and she’s always been really supportive of me, like a big sister."
Ironically, Dalle penned “Foetus” a week before she discovered she was carrying Orrin. “Then I was like, ‘Oh, boy. I’ve got to tell my managers and my label. They’re going to kill me!,’” she says of her request for two years off. “You’re pregnant for nine months, and then the whole first year, you want to be completely hands-on. Or at least I do.”
With no time to wait for other musicians to embellish her songs, she recorded under her own name out of necessity. Smooth sessions writing “Diploid” contrasted with what Dalle experienced before her daughter’s arrival. In a three-month period, she says, “I quit meth, The Distillers broke up, my dad died, my aunt and my nana died. I was so lost, and my only comfort was eating. So after Camille was born, I was 60 pounds overweight, Josh was on tour, my mom lived in Australia and I fell into serious depression.”
Having regained her original spark, Dalle says she lost herself for awhile in family: “I felt like, ‘My God! I have to be a mom, but what is that?’ Now I feel like I’ve grown into myself, finally. I’m in a really good place.”
IF YOU GO
Where: Slim’s, 333 11th St., S.F.
When: 8 p.m. Wednesday
Tickets: $14 to $16
Contact: (415) 522-0333, www.slimspresents.com