AOL: 'Nobody's Daughter' has been in the making for five-plus years. Did you feel any pressure at all when writing this album after the less than stellar reception of your last album, the solo 'America's Sweetheart'?
LOVE: ['America's Sweetheart'] actually got amazing reviews, which was the sick part because we're all revising history now 'cause I call it Le Distastra. It sold nothing. What I was most afraid of was that people who'd given me great reviews on 'America's Sweetheart' would be mad and then give me bad reviews on something that I didn't deserve bad reviews on. I think that making this record - it certainly wasn't a 'Chinese Democracy,' but it was a long record to make. I mean, I had one big disaster. I'm really slow. I'm not like the rest of my peers and, you know, from like Peter Buck teaching me guitar, to Will Sergeant of the Bunnymen teaching me guitar, to Michael Stipe teaching me how to walk into a room and how to deliver a line, to Bono teaching me how to remember people's names, which I suck at. So the fact is that I've done something prodigious and really slow. I've made a record that is relevant -- I mean far be it for me to call it relevant myself, but that's what it has been called and I've made a record that is damn good. You know, it's nice to grow old with your band, but, um, this [incarnation] is Hole. It's always been my band the same way the [Trent] Reznor has Nine Inch Nails. It's Hole. Legally, technically, it's Hole. So, I work much better with a band. It protects me from all the nonsense. It protects me from the Courtney Love monster. Courtney Love is actually on a sabbatical. We have sent her upstate. She's taking, what, media training?
LOVE: Socialization. She met a guy named Randy. Dimebag Randy. She's really pissed because they took away her Twitter. The Courtney Love Monster is actually at camp right now. She's almost been kicked out twice. But I send her flowers every day. I was talking to a woman, Lady Amanda Harlech who's [Karl] Lagerfeld's muse and we were talking about my kook. And we were talking about you know, I felt like as a woman part of my obligation was -- this is so misguided -- was to pull a Gaga and make clothes. I spent tons of money on that kook. But I don't want to wear it anymore because it's really not my obligation. I am me and I can wear whatever the hell I want. You don't have to look crazy to play. I don't know about the one up at camp, but that's different. So, I can't make a mistake [with this album]. Because, I mean, the fluorescent green tights ... enough. That's a fashion thing, but also connects to the music because, it's like, I'm wearing Chanel and I'm wearing Valentino right now, and I just rocked my ass off and I feel fine about it. I'm 45, what the hell? Why do I need to have crazy hair? I don't. I saw Roger Waters at dinner the other night and it took me forever to get that guy to wink at me. His wife goes, "That's Courtney Love." Anyway, he winked at me. It was like recognizing another person who'd done something astonishing ? 'The Wall.' 'The Wall' was a very indicative record on 'Nobody's Daughter.' 'Diamond Dogs' and 'The Wall.' It started off trying to be 'Blood on the Tracks.' It started off trying to be that midlife crisis [Bob] Dylan record and it didn't end up being that other than a song called 'Never Go Hungry,' which was one of the first songs that I wrote in '05 in rehab. Linda Perry's contribution is 'Letter to God.' I have almost nothing to do with 'Letter to God' other than the fact that no one else can sing it. Linda wrote a song called 'Beautiful' and she gave it to [Christina] Aguilera. I fought her for that song. In my life, I have never asked anyone to give me a song fully rendered. I've asked for riffs -- I asked Kurt [Cobain] for the riff to 'Heart-Shaped Box.' Corgan gave me the top riff for 'Samantha,' but he didn't give me the "People like you/Fuck people like me." That was my hook. Best hook I've ever written. So, yeah, there was definitely a lot of pressure to make this record good but I put that on myself. You can tell a man by his failures or a woman by her failures. And I had a terrible, terrible disastrous record and I can't afford two disasters. I get one -- that's all anyone's gonna give me. Halfway through, I think I was at 110 pounds and five-eleven. But that was my process. I got my crazy on. And now that the songs are written and done and in the can, I don't have to have my crazy on anymore. I'll always be slightly neurotic. But this is the one time I really wanna say this: Fashion, kook aside, the polarization of the name and all that s--- ... this is Hole. And you can hate me and you can like Hole. That's the function of Hole, partly; the other part of the function of Hole is that we are an actual real band and I own the name. I made up the name and I've had 17 members other than me. But I feel that this record is a leader. I've just done it a different way, and I will not be judged by the platitudes and rhetoric that men are judged by. Do you understand? It's like they've judged me as a woman my whole career. I've given up my kook. I'm not pulling a Gaga. I've decided against that part and it's a good thing. Trust me on this. And I may even quit smoking to preserve my voice, which would be a psycho-miracle. Can you imagine? Every picture of me I'm just smoking, smoking, smoking. All the little girls that smoke because of me ... there's like lots of people that smoke because I smoke. But I won't be judged as a woman. It's ridiculous. I worked my ass off like any damn man, and I did it in high heels.
-- Jessica Robertson