A brooding reflection on the grim realities that “fallen women” faced in Ireland’s infamous Magdalene Laundries, inter-sectional feminist post-punk band M(h)aol (pronounced like “male”) have shared their first single after a five year hiatus, titled ‘Laundries’. Through scathing vocals, thudding beats and distorted riffs, the group ruminate on the cruel past of these oppressive institutions.
Currently based between Dublin, London and Bristol, M(h)aol are formed of Róisín Nic Ghearailt, Constance Keane, Jamie Hyland, Zoe Greenway and Sean Nolan. Together, the band aim to shake up the male dominated post-punk scene with their urgent, shadowy sounds and new single ‘Laundries’ is the perfect instigator for this pursuit.
Fueled by relentless, crashing percussion and candid lyricism, ‘Laundries’ acknowledges “the shame of our secrets / the stain of our days”, shedding light on the uncomfortable truth behind the brutal religious institutions, the last of which closed its doors in October 1996. The track acts as a poignant reminder to both Ireland and the rest of the world that challenging oppression and misogyny is a collective responsibility, and the only way we can prevent such cruelty from happening again in the future.