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Gnarlitude's Jen Hanley and Alison Mosshart go way back, so when we got an opportunity to
interview Alison, we knew just who to call. It's not surprising their conversation was about
music, fashion, and machine guns.

I've been watching Alison Mosshart play in bands for over 10 years. Fifteen minutes is never enough time with an interviewee as interesting as Alison but on the first night of tour with her new band, The Dead Weather, she took a few minutes to talk to me about what's she's been up to.

In a matter of hours she will be performing, then heading out for several weeks of tour, during much of what she spends loads of time on the bus, constantly writing, photographing non-stop and, understandably, getting as much sleep as she possibly can.

She is wildly impressed with all the positive feedback they've received at the handful of shows they've played so far because, at the time of our interview, days before the release of their first LP, nobody was familiar with all their songs. She is curious and excited to see if people still like them with the debut of Horehound. When their first two songs were unveiled, we were excited to realize they'd covered Gary Neuman's "Are Friends Electric?" and as it turns out, if you catch them live, you might recognize some of their songs as they tend to throw in several covers, though Alison says most people don't seem to even realize that they're covers because they pick such obscure songs. You have to respect a band for their covers, as you are kind of getting an idea of what they're really into, and they have gone all over the board from Neuman to Van Morrison's "You Just Can't Win" to the super impressive Pentagram "Forever My Queen." "Pentagram was Jack's idea," Alison remarks, "The only people that recognize it when we play it are other people in bands."

As far as style goes, we all know Mosshart's got it. She tends to wear the same impeccable wardrobe non-stop: tight jeans, boots, a handful of t-shirts (though usually just one worn for a whole tour) and either a leather jacket or button down. It's really an easy look, but because she completely exudes pure and total rock and roll, she makes the simple thing work, frankly because for her it is totally effortless.

It's been said time and time again, but what does she really think of being called a Fashion Icon? "I think it's interesting considering how kind of unfashionable I probably am," she says. "But I think it's kind of cool and sort of ironic. I do wear the same stuff over and over again and I don't really go out of my way to buy expensive clothes or know what's happening. It's not a terrible message to send to people. Style for me always comes from people who are doing things that have nothing to do with the fashion world, they're usually artists or painters or musicians or writers. It all depends on what people are doing. I don't flip out over someone just walking down the street or in a magazine doing nothing, it's gotta be in the context of their life. What they're wearing tells a story about what they're doing, I like people wearing their art."

Truman Capote, Edie Sedgwick, Don Van Vliet (who she is "endlessly fascinated by") and Guy Picciotto from Fugazi are people to her who have a lot of style. "To me, someone walking down the street in head to toe Gucci says to me they have no imagination and lots of money. That's not blowing my mind," she says. "It's more about who you are rather than what you wear. Your personality's gotta be bigger than your outfit."

When I asked if anyone has approached her in regards to designing a collection for them, she said, "No and I don't think that would ever work. I'm not very feminine and I don't know what or how I would tell anyone else to dress. I don't know what I'd make for everyone else to wear. I'd be very selfish about it and just make the clothes I've been looking for," she says, "and then I'd be really pissed off that everyone else is wearing them!"

As for what's in her closet, her latest acquisitions are blowing my mind. On a recent stop in LA, she dropped by a favorite store of ours and picked up some big favorites of hers: a chain-link sweater and a monkey fur cape. We both gush over how incredible the monkey fur is and she says "I realize that both of these are completely not OK for the summertime. They are pretty much causing me death so I can't wear them," she says. "They'll have to wait." She's bummed, but I can't wait to see her sporting that cape on stage.

Besides the total excitement of being a new band and keeping herself endlessly busy, Mosshart has just wrapped making a video for the song "Treat Me Like Your Mother," with director Jonathan Glazer. "It has to be on the coolest and hardest things I've ever done in my whole entire life." Jack White and Alison both had to do machine gun training and she compares filming it second to being in the army or shooting an action film. They were shooting real machine guns with blanks that could still kill you up to 20, feet so nobody could get even remotely close to either of them. They themselves were loaded with explosives with wires running all over their bodies. By days end, she was completely covered toe to teeth in blood, dirt and gunpowder.

But this was exactly what she wanted. When she, Glazer and White discussed what they wanted it went like this: Jack wanted to be walking and singing, Alison wanted to shoot guns and they all wanted it to be in the desert. "Walking in the desert having to reload a machine gun and sing at the same time while things are exploding all over you is pretty full on. Incredibly full on," she says. She considers the whole experience to be all the good stuff wrapped up in one shoot: fun, dangerous, exciting and exhausting. Exhausting is probably not the best word to describe just how tired they were but you get the idea. She's annoyed that people are spouting off that the video is all fake and that the guns aren't real. Don't let the antics in every big budget film fool you, there was no CGI or after effects added in the whole video. "We were trying to making this thing as fast as we could and the only way we could do it was by doing it real. That's the only way we even wanted to do it." With such a monumentally amazing first video, I'm sure we can expect no less with the next, as it will blow minds somehow even more than they did with this one..