Perfect Pussy frontwoman imbues music with blood 

click to enlarge Perfect Pussy
  • COURTESY DREW REYNOLDS
  • Meredith Graves, center, heads up the punk band Perfect Pussy.
Syracuse, N.Y., rocker Meredith Graves didn’t set out to be controversial. Things just turned out that way when she playfully dubbed her latest punk band Perfect Pussy, then shouted indictments of an abusive ex-beau on last year’s debut EP, “I Have Lost All Desire for Feeling.”

The musician, who brings the band to San Francisco this week, then co-opted the Warner Bros. logo as her own and tracked a dissonant full-length album called “Say Yes to Love,” which also concerns a breakup.

And for a run of 300 LPs, she added a half-cup of her own essence to the vinyl. It wasn’t drawn from her arm.

“It was menstrual blood,” she says. “I was trying to come up with a cool idea for a special edition, and finally I said ‘F--- it! You want a really special edition? I’ll put my blood in it!’”

Graves, 26, is amazed that folks might find her or her moniker shocking.

“If anybody has a problem with it, it’s not my problem,” the heavily tattooed vocalist says. The name occurred to her when she added up all the negative things she had been telling herself about her appearance.

“I never look at myself and say ‘I’m not smart enough.’ I would look in the mirror and go, ‘I hate my body! I hate my face!’” she adds. “It was just killing me slowly, so I finally stopped and decided that I am perfect, in the truest sense, exactly how I am.”

Theoretically, Graves should be the most confident performer on the planet. The daughter of a journalist father and a stage-actress mother, she dabbled in many art forms, including opera, theater, painting, photography, writing and clothing design.

“I’ve even tried running away from it all with physical fitness,” she says. “I tend to try everything, so I get OK at some things, but never too good at anything. But I have to keep moving or else I get crazy.”

Graves also has her Screen Actors Guild card. Two years ago, she formed a band for a John Cusack movie shooting locally called “Adult World.” The group’s scene was cut, but it stayed together as Perfect Pussy.

Director Jonathan Case discovered her working as a seamstress in a vintage clothes shop, and hired her as costumer and makeup artist for his docudrama about corrupt 1970s Syracuse Mayor Lee Alexander called “King Lee.” He also gave her a cameo.

“It was a quick scene, but I got to drive a ’72 Chevelle!” she says.

IF YOU GO

Perfect Pussy

Where: Rickshaw Stop, 155 Fell St., S.F.

When: 9 p.m. Friday

Tickets: $10 to $12

Contact: (415) 861-2011, www.ticketfly.com

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Tom Lanham

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