PLAYLIST: March 2020

March has been a busy month for Get In Her Ears HQ! It’s Women’s History Month, and it was also International Women’s Day on the 8th; so we’ve continued to support the wxmen artists we love with regular reviews on our website, and a special IWD Playlist which you can listen to here.

Sofar Sounds kindly invited us to curate their IWD gig in Hackney too; which Indian Queens, Amahla, and Beckie Margaret all graciously agreed to play for us. We’ve barely stopped for breath, and we’ve got more exciting new music to share over the next few weeks. Take some time to scroll through our track choices for our March playlist below, and make sure you hit play on the Spotify playlist at the end of the page.

 

Sink Ya Teeth – ‘The Hot House’
Fresh from their excellent second album aptly named Two, Sink Ya Teeth’s singleThe Hot House’ and the accompanying video features footage shot by the band and audience members at their recent show in Oxford (check it out here). I am SO happy that I’ve got another heavy helping from the Norwich duo to soundtrack the upcoming warmer months. A time where post-punk, and deep house and I really get back into the swing of things. Sink Ya Teeth thank you, thank you! (Tash Walker)

Sleater-Kinney – ‘Hurry On Home’
I have not stopped singing this since us GIHE girls saw Sleater-Kinney live at Brixton Academy a few weeks ago. Their latest album The Center Won’t Hold is such a tonic, and their performance was certainly a gig-life highlight for all of us. (Kate Crudgington)

Noga Erez – ‘VIEWS’
The inimitable Noga Erez stylishly explores the absurdity of paying for exposure on social media on her brand new track, ‘VIEWS’. Collaborating with her partner Ori Rousso, and LA-based hip-hop artist Reo Cragun, Erez effortlessly commands attention in the striking video that accompanies the single. The Tel-Aviv musician’s clear vocals glide over slick beats and pop hooks to create an infectiously powerful anti-fakeness anthem. (KC)

Taquirah – ‘Feel’
‘Feel’ is the latest single from Taquirah, a performance artist form Illinois currently living in Brooklyn. I cannot get this track’s addictive beats and R&B melodies out of my head. I’m obsessed. Taquirah recently released a video for her track ‘Rush’ choreographed and performed by herself, in line with her focus on creating performance art pieces that fuse ballet with hip hop culture. Keep your eyes peeled for Taquirah’s debut project Divine, coming soon. (TW)

Belako – ‘Tie Me Up’
Having previously blown me away with their immersive live show supporting Queens Of The Stone Age in Finsbury Park last year, Basque Country band Belako have now shared new single ‘Tie Me Up’. Filled with gritty, swooning vocals and immense swirling hooks, it’s a super catchy alt-rock anthem showcasing the poignant raw power and majestic musicality that this Spanish band are capable of creating. (Mari Lane)

CLT DRP – ‘Where The Boys Are’
An anthem of self-realisation and new found confidence, ‘Where The Boys Are’ from Brighton-based CLT DRP oozes their immense raging passion in a seething blast of poignant, swirling electro-punk. Commenting on the track, front-woman Annie Dorrett says: “It’s a love song to some of my favourite female artists, a big thank you to my mom for being such a powerhouse and lastly a big f*ck you to all the TERFS out there spreading hate. It’s also just a really playful song to perform with the band, you get a lot of different elements of our sound all jammed into one piece.” CLT DRP’s upcoming debut album Without The Eyes, is out 15th May via Small Pond Records. (ML)

THICK – ‘Mansplain’
A cathartic, witty, guitar driven take-down of the men who undermine women in bands (and women in general), Brooklyn punk trio THICK’s single ‘Mansplain’ will resonate with women and girls who have struggled to be taken seriously on, and off stage. The track is lifted from their debut album 5 Years Behind, which is out now. (KC)

New Pagans – ‘Admire’
I first heard New Pagans whilst listening to The Irish Jam, and I quickly became fascinated by the Belfast band’s genre-bending sounds. Their debut EP Glacial Erratic is a poignant collection of tracks that explore issues of frustration, defiance, and resolution. ‘Admire’ is a personal favourite. It’s a humble, shimmering ode to the perseverance that’s needed to keep a long-term relationship going. (KC)

Why Bonnie – ‘Voice Box’
Oozing sunny uplifting vibes as shimmering hooks and Blair Howerton’s rich, luscious vocals flow with a soaring emotion, Why Bonnie’s ‘Voice Box’ has shades of the twinkling surf-rock of the likes of Alvvays or Best Coast, creating a truly dreamy offering fuzzing with a dazzling, effervescent charm. Voice Box, the upcoming EP from Why Bonnie, is out 10th April via Fat Possum Records. (ML) 

Ghost Car – ‘Virginia & Vita’
Released at the end of last year, ‘Virginia & Vita’ is a perfect example of all there is to love about Ghost Car. Oozing their scuzzy, quirky bubblegum indie-pop sounds, it’s propelled by eerie synth-driven hooks, soaring honey-sweet vocals and their trademark stirring, whirring theramin-soaked fuzz. I cannot wait to catch this totally unique band headline for us this Friday at The Finsbury! As always, FREE entry, event details here. (ML)

Indian Queens – ‘Bubblewrap’
Hackney trio Indian Queens headlined our International Women’s Day gig (in partnership with Sofar Sounds) at the weekend, and we were captivated by their stripped back set. The talented Amahla & Beckie Margaret also shared the bill, and Girls Against were on hand to  help raise awareness of the issues that female musicians & fans often face. This IQ track is a beguiling lament about the state of the planet, and it’s taken from their debut album God Is A Woman, which is set for release via Cool Thing Records on 3rd April. (KC)

Laura Gray – ‘Break, Drift’
‘Break, Drift’ is the first release from Laura Gray’s upcoming EP Better Lighting. Gentle vocals and dreamy synths all mixed together with pulsating beats. I think we could all do with a little more saxophone in our life. Check out the video for ‘Break, Drift’ here. (TW)

A.A. Williams – ‘Cold’
A.A. Williams is set to play her first headline gig at Southbank Centre in the Purcell Room on Thursday 12th March, and I’m excited to hear her dark, atmospheric sounds in the flesh for the first time. (tickets are available here). (KC)

Otta – ‘Near Enough A Woman’
I cannot get enough of Otta! Their new music is seeping so perfectly into my ears, it’s what I’ve been craving for so long and didn’t realise. This is one of their latest singles taken from the freshly released debut EP after it all blew over, which is sublime. Delivering the perfect combination and concoction of electronic, UK jazz, new soul and RnB. (TW)

Okay Kaya – ‘Insert Generic Name’
Okay Kaya who hails from Norway has been a firm fave of mine since I heard her debut Both, released back in 2018. I got to catch her on 4th March at SET in Dalston which was a total pleasure, she’s back again in May at Hoxton Hall so if you can, grab yourself some tickets. ‘Insert Generic Name’ is taken from her recently released and equally fantastic album Watch This Liquid Pour Itself, another incredibly intimate record of self-reflection via boldly honest, exposing lyrics which are delivered with bone dry with wit. One of my albums of 2020, without a doubt. (TW)

Bugeye – ‘Don’t Stop’
The latest single from friends of GIHE, Bugeye, ‘Don’t Stop’ is filled with swirling scuzzy hooks and the band’s trademark impassioned fiery attitude. Complete with whirring synth-driven refrains, it’s a frenzied slice of catchy disco-punk, showcasing the band’s utterly unique vibrant sound. ‘Don’t Stop’ is produced by Paul Tipler and is out now. You can catch Bugeye live on tour this month – check out their Facebook page for details. (Mari Lane) 

Lady Gaga – ‘Stupid Love’
Get me a pink wig and a metallic bikini, because I’m moving to Chromatica to live with Lady Gaga (see the ‘Stupid Love’ video here). I am SO excited to hear her new album (released on 10th April). I hope it’s bursting with electro-pop bangers like this one, and that all of her future videos are just as Power-Ranger-esque. (KC)

 

ReBalance Celebrates International Women’s Day & Interview with Cat Webb (Lighting Engineer at Union Chapel)

There are plenty of music events happening across the UK on International Women’s Day this year (which we’ve listed for you here), but we’d like to give some extra attention to the ReBalance event that’s happening at London’s Union Chapel on Sunday 8th March (tickets here).

Women from Festival RepublicLive NationAcademy Music GroupBig Scary MonstersSony MusicMAMAOgle HogMetropolisMelody VRNational MerchandiseBBCSafe Gigs for Women, and PRS Foundation will all be in attendance, and on hand to talk to wxmen who are looking for advice about their career in the music industry. There will also be live performances from Nilüfer YanyaMartha Hill and Tamzene.

Cat Webb, who is the Lighting Engineer at Union Chapel, has invaluable experience in an industry environment that has traditionally been dominated by men. Below, she candidly shares how she came to be a Lighting Engineer, and the challenges she’s overcome to excel in her current field.

 

How did you come to know about, and work at Union Chapel?
I’ve lived in Islington for years, and always passed the Chapel with itchy fingers and ambitious eyes. As a lighting engineer you’re always looking to work on interesting shows in spaces that give you a sense of awe and delight, so when the opportunity arose to join the lighting team I jumped on it.

What is your work at Union Chapel, and what does it involve?
I’m a lighting engineer and designer. Some of the time this involves looking after visiting designers, assisting with setting up their equipment or helping them use the lights we have to achieve the looks they want. The work can be technical – rigging, calculating power and programming – but a lot of the time the most appreciated quality is being a friendly, welcoming face.

However, not many bands tour with their own lighting designers, so most of the time I’m the designer for visiting gigs. If you imagine that this is a profoundly complex process involving extensive collaboration and maybe an analysis of the cultural meaning of blue – that’d be great. But the reality is that most of the time you have 4-5 hours between the band arriving and the audience, and though you can listen to sound check and have conversations in that time, maybe even be given a rough set list of songs and binge a few on YouTube if you’re lucky (and the wifi works), realistically most of the time you’re winging it. Even if you do get to hear something from an album they might play, the live version is often very different, which is both the challenge and the thrill of live music.

But! In defense of lighting designers: we are winging it based on years of experience with story, atmosphere and music, as well an understanding of light, colour, angle and the tools that are available to us. Even if I don’t know the music well, my job is to use that experience to judge where emotionally things are going, and to follow and predict in a way which catches the eyes along with the ears. At its best, good lighting adds to something that the brain doesn’t even necessarily experience as sight or sound – just a great big feeling, powerful and true.

What has it been like being female working in a male-dominated industry? What needs to change?
Things have changed a lot in the last ten years. The overt sexism that was very present when I graduated – relentless comments about my appearance, sexuality or ‘lady-brain’ – has declined, for which we can all heave a sigh of relief.

However, there’s still a long way to go. With somewhere between 6-9% of my profession being female, the mental picture people still have of lighting designers is male. Psychologically this has numerous consequences, including making it more likely that men are hired. It is easier to see the merits in someone who already fulfills your mental picture of what the person should be, and to see the flaws in someone who defies that expectation – this is human nature. The goal is to change that expectation.

I have been in more gigs than I can name where my male colleagues are addressed as the sound or lighting ‘engineer’ and I will be the lighting ‘girl’. Visiting engineers have physically started in surprise to see a female in my position, or I have been told that I shouldn’t light a certain kind of music, because as a woman I “just won’t get it”. The base-line expectation of female competence is still not there. Personally – and among many of my peers – this means we aspire to standards of excellence above and beyond, just to be treated with the same respect as our male colleagues. And if our standards drop to merely average, we are judged twice as harshly.

Qualities in a designer such as confidence, commitment, determination, expertise, or precision, are too-often called something else in a woman. Bossiness. Ball-busting. Picky; difficult; cocky. And we are social creatures; it is easier to believe that we are individually failures, than to challenge a cultural bias, let alone in an industry whose leaders, who you depend on for your ability to live and eat, are still overwhelmingly male. Women who call out the sexism are too often dismissed as “difficult” or “flaky”, or accused of making a big deal out of nothing. It is incredibly hard to honestly and openly challenge your own privileges and biases, and having these conversations with generosity is still an ongoing challenge – for all of us.

Machismo still drives large parts of the technical industry, though it too thankfully is changing. A classic example is the endless saga of whether women can lift heavy things. The answer is, of course: yes. Of course we can, and yes, it is frustrating when a woman states her capabilities, but is ignored; her competence and her word mean less than a preconception of her strength and abilities. However I will often ask someone else to help me lift something heavy, not because I’m “weak”, but because the culture of being “strong” has left so many good men I know injured. It is a culture that hurts everyone.

Both theatre and live music often correctly protects the well-being of artists, but does not extend the same human courtesy to its technicians, male or female. Hard hours, rudeness, variable pay – I don’t know any technician of any gender who hasn’t been in some way treated badly at some point in their careers, or told to “suck it up” because we work for “passion” rather than decent work conditions or reasonable pay. The Union Chapel is a fantastic part of changing this, but it’s a big fight. Actively promoting diversity is the first step to changing that culture, and making the industry better for us all.

What has working/volunteering at Union Chapel made a difference to you/your career?
I always wanted to work at Union Chapel, for the space and the music. It was a bucket-list ambition, and fulfilling it has been a privilege.

In recent years, the Chapel’s move to actively seek out female technicians has been incredibly encouraging to see, and it’s been an honour to work with the incredible teams of both male and female engineers in the venue. As a freelancer you can bump from show to show without ever feeling rooted, but the Chapel fosters a sense of community, and the team is so welcoming and good that walking through the Chapel’s doors often feels closer to coming home, than going to work.

As a listed building, lighting the Chapel has changed how I approach my work. Traditional stage lighting is about drawing the eye into only one place, zooming the senses in. At the Chapel you almost have to do the opposite, zoom out to place the music in the context of a shared space and experience. That said, while I’ve lit many gigs that will stay with me and reveled in the power of light in that space to do something big and amazing, the moment a thousand candles were lit up during the Christmas service, I was forced to admit that sometimes, just occasionally, a bit of string and wax can put the twenty first century to shame.

Finally, tell us a bit more about yourself…
I started in theatre before moving more into gigs, but probably still know more about Shakespeare than Adele. That said, I’ve now been in music long enough that every week something will come on the radio that I’ve lit, which is pretty damn cool. I have mild synaesthesia, so I often hear and feel things in colour; I’ll hear a song and see the colours I lit it with long before I recognize the actual band.

I volunteer for the Green Party, and as well as studying a martial art I also sometimes teach women’s self-defense. I hope that none of my students ever have to fight to protect themselves, but I believe that it’s easier to talk your way out of trouble if you know you can also defend yourself, and that crucially you believe in your own right to do so. I also write novels, initially as Catherine Webb and Kate Griffin, and more recently as Claire North.

Get In Her Ears w/ Nun Habit 05.03.20

Kate and Mari were back in the studio this week with all the new music to celebrate International Women’s Day, including tracks from Karen O, Belako, Nova Twins, Taquirah, Why Bonnie and New Pagans.

They were joined by Nun Habit, who entertained us with the wit and musicality of exclusive acoustic renditions of two of their tracks.

Listen back here:

Tracklist
Karen O & Dangermouse – Woman
Nova Twins – Vortex
Noga Erez – Views
Shea Diamond – I Am Her
Tina Boonstra – Out Of My Depth
Actrese – Lola
Pom Pom Squad – Red With Love
Wargirl – Dancing Gold
Beach Riot – Tune In, Drop Out
Deaf Surf – SOFA
Dream Nails – Payback
LIME – Surf n Turf
Belako – Tie Me Up
Johanna Glaza – Exile
Jemma Freeman & The Cosmic Something – Black Rain
New Pagans – Admire
Why Bonnie – Voice Box
Taquirah – Feel
Faber – Time
Matthew Barton – Fag
Ali – No More Trying
Jess Fitz – I’m Fine
Alanis Morissette – You Oughta Know
Eurythmics & Aretha Franklin – Sisters Are Doin’ It For Themselves

International Women’s Day Events Across The UK, 2020

As you may be aware, at Get In Her Ears we celebrate wonderful female and non-binary artists every single day! So, you may feel that there’s no real need for us to remind you on International Women’s Day to recognise them. But, as much as we try, days like this still seem necessary for society to take a minute and recognise not only the achievements of all the fantastic womxn in the world, but also to draw attention to the ongoing injustices and ingrained sexism that still sadly exists in 2020.

And so it only seems right that there are plenty of incredible events happening across the country this weekend to celebrate this official day of womxn. Here’s just a few that we’d strongly recommend!

The Bechdel Sound Test Weekender – Brixton, 6th – 8th March
South London’s ultimate female fronted music weekender is back to celebrate International Women’s Day.The party kicks off at the Bechdel Sound Test’s spiritual home – the Book and Record Bar right next to West Norwood station, with South London bass and garage DJ Rosie Riot. She will be supported by genre spanning Bechdel DJs ensuring the party goes on in to the early hours. Saturday is live music night at iconic Brixton venue the Windmill, headlined by CHROMA and supported by Jemma Freeman & The Cosmic Something, Foundlings, Rookes and Faultress. Festivities will come to a head on Sunday with an International Women’s Day party upstairs at The Ritzy. Promising an afternoon of chilled acoustic vibes and DJs it’s the perfect way to round off the IWD weekend. There will also be some small pop up stalls with records and feminist gifts supplied by The Book and Record Bar and Brave Girl Gifts. The event is free entry and raising money for Samaritans and Refuge. Sounds like a perfect celebration of all things female! Event info here.

BBC 6Music FestivalThe Roundhouse, 8th March
Where you can expect to find me on Sunday, BBC 6Music bring their annual festival to an epic close on International Women’s Day with a line-up of some of the most incredible females in music at The Roundhouse in Camden. Headlining will be total favourite Kate Tempest with her perfectly poignant and stirringly honest offerings, along with the legendary Kim Gordon, the cinematic sounds of Anna Meredith, the seething power of Jehnny Beth and the gritty musicality of Nadine Shah. I cannot wait! More info here.

Southbank Centre WOW Festival, 6th – 8th March
Southbank Centre’s annual Women Of The World festival is always an incredible and inspiring collection of events, and this year promises to be no different. Over three days, WOW’s line-up of world class speakers, activists and performers including Naomi Wolf, Shazia Mirza, Scarlett Curits, Sandi Toksvig, The Guilty Feminist, Svetlana Alexievich, Mary Robinson and more will be joined by thousands to explore the state of gender equality across the globe and tackle the subjects that matter most to women and girls across the world today. With a range of both free and ticketed events, it’s definitely worth a visit. More info here.

GRL 2020 – Base Camp Boro, Middlesborough, 7th March
Featuring GIHE faves Bugeye, as well as other awesome bands such as Dead Naked Hippies, Bad Bug and Eve Conway, this family-friendly Middlesborough event brings together some of the UK’s best female/female-identifying performers & artists, in addition to live art, street food, a feminist market + more! If you’re in the area, get your tickets now.

BSWA Fundraiser – The Sunflower Lounge, Birmingham, 8th March
Indie Midlands have collaborated with Loud Women to host this Birmingham event. Taking place at The Sunflower Lounge, it aims to raise money for Birmingham & Solihull Womens Aid (BSWA). With music from The Sunset Beach Hut, Glass Ceilings, Fawner, Gray Wave and Shanghai Hostage, it sounds like a great way to celebrate International Women’s Day, and all for a good cause. More info here.

WCDI International Women’s Day Special, Peckham Audio, 8th March
Female promoters We Can Do It celebrate International Women’s Day by hosting Honeyblood’s Stina Tweeddale, who will play a special solo set. With support from The Pearl Hearts and more, it’s going to be awesome! More info here.

Punka International Women’s Day Show, Zed Alley, Bristol, 8th March
If you’re in the South West, you should be aware of promoters Punka by now. Championing womxn and LGBTQ artists of all genres in Bristol, their events always like a lot of fun! For International Women’s Day they’re hosting a special show at Zed Alley with performances from solo artist Emily Breeze, Lucy Reynolds and drag kings such as Isaac Dix. More info here.

INTERNATIONAL WOMEN’S DAY w/ WXMB 2, Colours Hoxton, 8th March
London collective WXMB 2 are celebrating International Women’s Day by hosting an all day event at Colours in Hoxton. With a programme full of great live acts, DJs, workshops such as sound engineering, music production, freelancing and zine culture, panels, a sustainable creatives fair, yoga, a balancing feminine energy course, and much more, it really sounds like an inspiring day for all! Including live music from Elsa Hewitt, Austel, Rory Sky, Evie Balfe and more. Ticket info here.

Get In Her Ears Live @ The Finsbury w/ Ghost Car, 13th March
Ok, so this one’s a bit late, as our Finsbury gig doesn’t quite fall on International Women’s Day this year… but we’ll be celebrating some incredible womxn in music as always at our gig the following Friday! With a headline set from the quirky bubblegum indie of Ghost Car, there’ll be support from The Other Ones, Gaptooth and Minimals. We cannot wait! Get In Her Ears celebrate women every day, we welcome everyone at our gig who supports our ethos, but especially aim to create a safe space for female identifying and LGBTQ+ people. Come and keep the IWD celebrations going with us on the 13th, and all for FREE! More info here.

LIVE: Madison McFerrin @ Jazz Cafe, 08.03.19

With just a loop pedal and a small tablet, hidden behind the flowers looped around her mic stand, Madison McFerrin has got more stage presence than most four-piece bands. She’s got a gift for putting an audience totally at ease, switching up the pace between songs with chatty anecdotes about her school days and occasional self-deprecating humour.

Typically at the start of a gig, there’s a shift in the atmosphere of a room as the artist begins their set and the audience decides whether or not they’re on their side: this audience are instantly on Madison’s. Her songs develop seemingly from scratch, using the loop pedal to build increasingly complex vocal harmonies that, despite their soulful pop melodies, have a jazzy undercurrent of progression and improvisation.

She’s supported by new London artist Rahaven and R&B duo S4U, in an all-female line-up curated by gal-dem for International Women’s Day. Jazz Café usually does a great job of booking a diverse range of acts (as I recently grumbled about on Twitter, they were at the time of writing the only London venue to have booked a non-male act for Piano Day), and this collaboration with gal-dem is a master stroke. Hats off to them, and here’s hoping for more Jazz Café takeovers in the year ahead.

Apropos of not much, I’ll also mention here that it’s apparently one of the few venues in London where it’s still possible to vape indoors (a fact I’ve learned from my boss, Sam, an enthusiastic vaper): the DJ backing one of the support acts, keen to keep things casual, had a quick vape on stage in the middle of a song.

In my old age, I’m increasingly grumpy about weeknight gigs where the headliner doesn’t come on stage til after 9.30: it’s not very punk-rock of me I know, but I love an early bedtime. Madison McFerrin’s jazzy a cappella and witty banter are worth getting the last train home for, and that’s saying something.

Frances Salter
@goodcanarymusic

Get In Her Ears Live @ The Finsbury w/ ARXX, 08.03.19

Following a host of amazing bands playing for us lately, including Wolf Girl, Sit Down, Fightmilk and Peach Club, we were back at The Finsbury to celebrate International Women’s Day on Friday, with a jam-packed night of the best new music from awesome womxn, and raising money for fantastic organisation The Outside Project.

Kicking things off is the wonderfully wacky Riot Grrrl-inspired sounds of Rainbow Corp. With her twinkling electronic soundscapes and honey-sweet Le Tigre-reminiscent vocals, it’s a perfectly uplifting start to our celebrations.

Next up, South London duo Scrounge once again blow us away with their immense, gritty offerings. Blasting out their unique brand of fierce post-punk, the raw intensity of Lucy’s captivating vocals combined with Luke’s raging, pummelling beats creates a truly colossal force to be reckoned with.

Penultimate band of the night, The Baby Seals, deliver a perfect accompaniment to International Women’s Day. With their fun-filled, empowering energy, they treat us to songs about everything from masturbation to getting ID-ed in ALDI. Championing autonomy and body positivity with a wonderfully tongue-in-cheek wit, they leave us united and ready to celebrate all things female.

Having played for us in supporting slots a few times before, it’s an absolute joy to have Brighton duo ARXX headline for us on this extra special occasion. Immediately blasting out their immense, energy-fuelled offerings with a ferocious, sparkling force, their phenomenal power captures the attention of each and every member of the completely packed-out venue. Delivering their seething, punk-infused anthems, ARXX prove themselves to be the ultimate headliner for International Women’s Day; they just get better each time we see them, continuing to impress with their truly magnificent command of all they do.

HUGE thanks to all who made it down to The Finsbury on Friday, making our International Women’s Day celebrations so special. And massive love to all four amazing acts who played for us, and The Outside Project for all they do. Catch us again on 12th April when Mammoth Penguins will be headlining for us.

Words: Mari Lane / @marimindles
Photos: Jon Mo / @jonmophoto

 

GIHE Celebrates International Women’s Day 2019

As you may be aware, at Get In Her Ears we celebrate wonderful female artists every single day! So, you may feel that there’s no real need for us to remind you on International Women’s Day to recognise them. But, as much as we try, days like today still seem necessary for society to take a minute and recognise not only the achievements of all the fantastic womxn in the world, but also to draw attention to the ongoing injustices and ingrained sexism that still sadly exists in 2019.

So, this International Women’s Day, we’ve put together some of the female/non binary artists that we feel have been pivotal in pushing forward womxn and equality in music over the last year. Read about why each of them inspire us, and listen to the super mega playlist below…

Aretha Franklin – ‘Respect’
I just couldn’t not include Queen Aretha, who the world sadly lost in August last year. She remains one of the most influential artists the world has ever known; a beautiful soul who changed music forever, as well as campaigning for civil rights throughout her life.
(Mari Lane)

Nova Twins – ‘Lose Your Head’
A lesson in cutting loose and walking on the wild side, South East London duo Nova Twins provided us with this mind-melter of a track earlier in the year. Last year, we were lucky enough to have Amy & Georgia come into the Hoxton Radio studio for a chat, and they blew us away playing live for Loud Women at The Lexington too. Their raw, abrasive, genre-defying tunes are consistent favourites here at Get In Her Ears, and I’m sure they’ll bring the noise again at Cro Cro Land next month!
(Kate Crudgington)

Noga Erez – ‘Bad Habits’
Tel Aviv renegade Noga Erez has been a favourite of ours ever since blowing us away with 2017’s Under The Radar. Last year’s ‘Bad Habits’ is a snarling tirade of anger, spoken through gritted teeth, exhibiting an intense defiance in both Erez’s lyrics and her music: “I’m no-one, but who the fuck are you? Huh?” she repeats, as the beats of Ori Rousso – her partner, co-writer, composer & producer – helps it mutate in to a “gritty, truth-seeking alt-pop” anthem – culminating in Erez’s vicious “Fuck you” at the close of the song.
(KC)

Mavi Phoenix – ‘Bite’
We’re massive fans of Austrian artist Mavi Phoenix’s dreamy lo-fi electro offerings, and even bigger fans of all she does to promote LGBTQ+ rights. We were lucky enough to have a chat with her on our radio show last year, listen back here.
(Tash Walker)

Little Simz – ‘Boss’
I’ve been a little late to the Little Simz party, but now I’ve found her, I don’t know what I did without her immense power in my ears. Having released her debut album A Curious Tale Of Trials + Persons in 2015 via her own independent label, she has continued to defy genres and receive acclaim over the last few years. And now, with her completely mind-blowing brand new album, Grey Area, she proves once again that she’s an incredible force to be reckoned with, with her ferocious, empowering anthems. She sums it up perfectly in this track: “I’m a boss in a fucking dress.”
(ML)

Pussyliquor – ‘MY BODY.MY CHOICE.’
Bringing their pure, uncensored female rage with a wild, punk-fuelled passion, Pussyliquor’s ‘My Body.My Choice’ gives an urgency to its explicitly important message. Having played for us at The Finsbury last year, they immediately filled the venue with the heaving bodies of an army of moshing fans, their intense riotous power, tongue-in-cheek wit and empowering messages of equality being delivered with a fierce energy and searing, colossal force.
(ML)

The Menstrual Cramps – ‘The Smash’
The Menstrual Cramps pretty much sum up the current state of things with each of their topical, tongue-in-cheek offerings and empowering, feel good vibes. Taken from their incredible album Free Bleedin’, ‘The Smash’ blasts out the all-too-relatable refrain of “It’s time we took back the floor, kick the Tories out the door – we want a revolution”. Oozing an immense, politically-charged force as vocalist Emilia’s genuine, seething passion shines through, The Menstrual Cramps combine activism with musical prowess, providing an essential soundtrack for all womxn right now.
(ML)

Big Joanie – ‘Fall Asleep’
DIY punks Big Joanie released their debut album Sistahs last year, and it’s a mix of the personal and political; coupled with riotous rhythms and a sistah-hood ethos. Recorded at Hermitage Works Studio with producer Margo Broom, and released via Thurston Moore and Eva Prinz’s new label (The Daydream Library Series), Sistahs is a strong debut from a band who have been actively working on and off-stage within London’s DIY scene for years.
(KC)

Alice Bag – ’77’
Taken from last year’s poignant album Blueprint, punk legend Alice Bag brought together a dream team for her single ’77’. Featuring Riot Grrrl queens Kathleen Hanna and Allison Wolfe, plus an appearance in the video from Shirley Manson, it draws inspiration from Dolly Parton’s 1980 proto-feminist workplace comedy ‘9 to 5′, commenting on the gender pay gap that still plagues society. Filled with seething, punk-driven riffs, the women not only rage that “I make 77 cents and it’s not right / It’s bad for women!”, but make the point that “it’s worse if you’re not white”. As Bag poignantly sneers “… don’t pretend that we’re paid equal… You wrote the script / But I’m writing the sequel”, ’77’ is an empowering, inspiring call to arms to unite against the patriarchy and make the changes needed for equality, in the workplace and beyond.
(ML)

Peach Club – ‘Boy In A Band’
I first became aware of Norwich Riot Grrrls Peach Club seeing them support The Tuts at The George Tavern a few years back, and they continued to blow me away headlining for us at The Finsbury last year. With a raw ferocity, thrashing hooks and driving beats, ‘Boy In A Band’ builds with a frenzied energy to a riotous anthem, blasting into the ears with a racing sense of urgency. And rightly so. We need voices like Peach Club’s now more than ever; a voice that gives motivation and inspiration to girls and women to speak out and be heard in order to prevent the damaging actions of certain boys in bands continuing to be swept under the carpet (or even accepted as the norm) within the music industry.
(ML)

Queen Zee – ‘Boy’
Making weirdness into wonderful, inclusive, explosive new tunes, GIHE favourites Queen Zee shared their debut self-titled album last month, and it was every bit as glorious as we’d hoped. Album highlight ‘Boy’ is an anthem for trans-gender rockers and their allies who refuse to be ignored, or oppressed by transphobic or homophobic attitudes. “You can try and bury my head in the sand, but that won’t make the body at the surface a man’s” sings Zee, as manic guitar and heart-pounding drums smash out for just shy of five minutes. A poignant offering that gleefully cuts down any of the forces that attempt to stand in the way of equality.
(KC)

Lizzo – ‘Juice’
Another utterly empowering and ferociously fun offering from GIHE favourite Lizzo, ‘Juice’ is filled with all the refreshing wit and funk-filled grooves that we’ve come to know and love from the Minneapolis artist. With Lizzo’s joyous, body-positive spirit and its immensely infectious, ’80s reminiscent hooks, ‘Juice’ is the ultimate feel-good anthem for women everywhere.
(ML)

Tirzah – ‘Gladly’
Beautifully understated, gently hypnotic and lyrically touching. I cannot get enough of Tirzah right now, and you know what, it’s not just this track, but the whole album Devotion. What can I say… I am hopelessly devoted. Cringe statements aside, please go listen if you haven’t already, your life will be better for it.
(TW)

Gazelle Twin – ‘Hobby Horse’
A unique artist with razor sharp vision and uncompromising creativity; Gazelle Twin (aka Elizabeth Bernholz) combines glitchy beats, menacing samples and an uncanny new costume on her latest album, Pastoral. Gazelle Twin delivers her Pastoral vision through grinning but gritted teeth. Her altruistic style is one that can’t be mimicked – even though she herself is a master at adopting the traits of others, and transforming into a new species of performer who offers brutality and intrigue in equal measure.
(KC)

Pitou – ‘Give Me A Glass’
So gentle, so beautiful, and so delicate. ‘Give Me A Glass’ by Pitou is taken from her EP I Fall Asleep So Fast, released via Mink Records. I think this track is just mesmerising, and it probably helps that it was the first song I listened to after meeting my niece for the first time. So here’s to raising that glass to the new addition in my family!
(TW)

HAVVK – ‘Glass’
Last year, GIHE faves HAVVK (formally HAWK) marked their rebrand with the re-release of their bewitching single ‘Glass’. Originally written in 2015, and released in the run up to the Irish Marriage Equality Referendum, ‘Glass’ addresses themes of conflict and resolution. Oozing an eerie subtle power and magnetising grace, it showcases HAVVK at their most exquisite – doing what they do best; combining activism with their unique musical prowess. And front-woman Julie doesn’t stop there; she has also co-founded SelfMade – a platform to explore DIY music in Ireland through performance, discussion, and art, and last year launched Female Fronted Drawn Together – a project through which she has created a playlist of admirable female bands/musicians and created an illustration to accompany each song.
(ML) 

Courtney Barnett – ‘Nameless, Faceless’
Courtney Barnett is probably my favourite, and most relatable, lyricist. She has a unique ability to tackle everyday life with a perfect wit and raw honesty; that, combined with her woozy vocals and infectious jangly melodies, makes for an utter dream. Taken from last year’s Tell Me How You Really Feel, ‘Nameless, Faceless’ is a refreshingly honest take on male chauvinism; with lyrics inspired by Margaret Atwood – “Men are scared that women will laugh at them, women are scared that men will kill them…” – it perfectly sums up why we still need International Women’s Day.
(ML)

Wolf Alice – ‘Yuk Foo’
Seeing Wolf Alice perform under the sparkling mirror-ball lights at their Alexandra Palace headline gig in 2017; I swooned so hard I thought I might drown in my own heart-shaped tears. And I couldn’t be happier for them winning the 2018 Mercury Prize this year; extremely well deserved from Ellie Rowsell and co., and a promising step in the right direction for female bands and artists at award ceremonies.
(KC)

Dream Nails – ‘Vagina Police’
“Your body is not your own, you are public property…” our favourite Feminist Punk Witches rage in last year’s ‘Vagina Police’. A formidable offering from the band that proved once again just why we need Dream Nails in our lives; a group willing to combine activism and music to form a unifying force against the patriarchy; a group who create sparkling, energy-filled tracks that succeed in inspiring and motivating girls everywhere to get to the front and make our voices heard.
(ML)

Bikini Kill – ‘Rebel Girl’
We don’t need to say how inspirational Kathleen Hanna, Bikini Kill and the whole Riot Grrrl movement are to us. But what we will say is that we’re are over the moon excited to all be going to see Bikini Kill live this June! Literally dreams can come true…

Listen to our International Women’s Day playlist on Spotify, and catch us for our IWD party tonight at The Finsbury. We’ll be joined by ARXX, The Baby Seals, Scrounge and Rainbow Corp, and will also be raising money for fantastic charity The Outside Project.