10 Oct 2015

Skinny Girl Diet are a breath of fresh air; powerful, angry and EMPOWERING

Politics in rock music is pretty much a lone cry from the void these days. You might see Eoin Loveless post something about Miss England “taking women’s rights back to the 70s” on instagram or Swim Deep share some change.org petition about what a cunt David Cameron is, but lets face it, no one’s really been empowering teens to riot for an eternity.

Cast your minds back to 2013, when NME launched its “Young Britannia” issue, in which the magazine invited the “brightest and boldest young talent in the UK” to “debate the big issues they face as emerging artists”. The feature was essentially giving up and coming artists an opportunity to get a bit deep, connect with the people, fight the system and all that. But when it came to debating politics and whether or not it had a place in music anymore, well, the whole thing became pretty painful to say the least. Turns out, the young musicians NME were vouching for, really aren’t as “bright and bold” as they’d anticipated.

Austin from Swim Deep claimed he “didn’t need to write a song about David Cameron or whatever”, Drenge said they didn’t know who their local MP was or what he stood for and Chloe Howl rolled her eyes and stated she couldn’t understand why anyone would want to project anger through their music. Peace went for the classic “The-Clash-and-Bob-Dylan-did-it-better-so-what’s-point” and Daniel Avery finally ended this soul destroying, bang-your-head-against-the-wall part of the feature by saying the “ground is fertile” for something majorly political to happen in music, in a tone of voice that sounded like “I hope something does happen because rock n roll really isn’t very rock n roll anymore, is it?”.

I mean, to put it politely, what the fuck. I mean, if this is the next generation of music, why are we bothering? Why didn’t the Mayans just bloody end it when they said they were? Why do we care if there’s going to be a third world war? There’s no anger, there’s no passion anymore, what’s the point!

I’m not saying that I hate these musicians, because let’s face it, I’ve probably listened to enough Drenge to prove I’m clinically insane and if you look hard enough on my laptop, you’ll probably find about ten gifsets of Austin Williams and Ellie Rowsell holding hands or something. It’s good music, but there’s so much to be angry about in terms of politics right now. Why is our generation so fucking apathetic? Innocent people are DYING because of POLICE BRUTALITY! The government WANTS TO TAKE OUR HUMAN RIGHTS AWAY! Theresa May wants to know EXACTLY WHAT IT IS WE ARE DOING ALL THE TIME! The NHS is getting PRIVATISED! THE RICH ARE GETTING RICHER AND THE POOR ARE GETTING POORER! Teenagers are being BRAINWASHED INTO TERRORISTS! THEY’RE CLOSING DOWN YOUTH SERVICES! SEXISM, RACISM AND HOMOPHOBIA CONTINUE TO PREVAIL IN THE 21ST CENTURY! THERE ARE WARS GOING ON! PEOPLE ARE GETTING JAILED AND ABUSED BECAUSE THEY DARED TO SPEAK OUT! DO I EVEN NEED TO GO ON??

But somewhere from the shadows, lurking in a place for years, a place that the NME didn’t even venture, were three teenage girls from London who really were very angry and really did give a shit. Maybe there’s no need to be pessimistic, because if these three girls get big, I tell you now, more girls will be starting mosh pits at gigs and more boys will be burning their Catfish and the Bottlemen LPs.

Who are these girls? They’re called Skinny Girl Diet and they’re brilliant. If you’ve not heard them before, just imagine a nuclear explosion, crossed with Joan of Arc, slayer-esque guitar riffs, all the GRRRL Kathleen Hanna put into Riot Girl and a mosh pit capable of killing about 10 people.

“But they’re wearing LATEX, aren’t they all, like SEVENTEEN?” I hear you cry. Uh, think again. Skinny Girl Diet are standing for a new generation of feminism, a feminism that girls my age fly the flag for, a feminism that says “this is MY body, this is MY sexuality and I CAN DO WHAT THE HELL I WANT WITH IT”. Are they going to kick start a new Riot Grrrl movement? Who knows, but they’re certainly capable of it. And Vice/i-D has already earmarked them as 'this generation's Bikini Kill', so who knows?

The girls have just released the single Silver Spoons taken from their up and coming EP Reclaim your life. The song follows meaty, screamy guitar riffs and angsty vocals from frontwoman Delilah Holliday, who moans about police corruption.

Silver Spoons is a huge leap in the right direction from their Girl Gang State of Mind EP. Their sound continues to be as violent and trashy as ever, but has got a whole lot more slick and established. For a long time, I have to admit, the girls seemed to have the edge, the style, the aggression and the fuck-you attitude of a Samurai warrior-rioting anarchist crossbreed, but the music wasn’t really quite there yet. It was perfect to headbang, smash your room up and kill someone to, but it was a bit rough around the edges. Let’s be honest, it wasn’t something you’d sit down and appreciate as a beautifully crafted piece of music, second best to none other that Mozart himself. But we’ve got to remember, these girls aren’t in their twenties like the majority of “young artists”, they’re around 17-19 years of age and started out when they were doing their GCSES. They’re not even proper adults yet. But as they’ve grown up, they’ve got a damn sight better. Silver Spoons proves that the girls do have talent and should be respected as musicians. It’s going to show the world that Skinny Girl Diet aren’t here to fuck around, they’re going to get bigger and they’re going to get better, and they’re certainly going to get a hell of a lot angrier.

This is going to be the political wake up call we need. Prepare yourselves.