By Various Artists
Everyone knows that women do not a good rock star make. That is, of course, utter bollocks, and Manifesta are out to prove it. Much of this CD does, of course, fit nicely into the Riot Grrrl genre. You can hear Le Tigre, Bikini Kill, Sleater-Kinney, all that lot here, but there is more.
Perhaps the most notable band on this album are The Holy Terror, who everyone in Leeds must surely have heard by now. It's all thudding bass, angular guitars and Helena's pissed off slightly Karen O-esque vocals. The Longs Blondes are also there, playing utterly danceable rock'n'roll, despite being a less exciting band on record than live, where they look the part so much that you really can't help be entertained by their keen fashion sense, even if you don't like their music. Which I do.
There's an utterly bizarre band called Lesbo Pigs, who sing about being sexual deviants (on 'Sexual Deviant') and about the fact that 'plenty of straight girls take it up the arse' (on 'Up the Arse') all in the space of roughly a minute and with minimal folky guitar backing. Eccentric but entertaining. Purgatory State are somewhat less fun. Their vocalist insists on screaming in a I've put my vocal cords through a paper shredder, then attacked them with a cheese grater manner, which to be honest was crap when Kittie did it, and is still crap now. Except, that is, when done in small doses. The Radical Possibilities of Pleasure have the similar screamy vocals at points, but they combine them nasal dead-pan almost monotone lines, which makes an interesting contrast.
Flick Knives and Splinters make a similar racket to Purgatory State, but their two songs last just over one and half minutes in total and are as aggressive as the band's name suggests. There is something quite thrilling about such short, pure bursts of anger. I'm sold, although I wouldn't want to get in an argument with them. So, a note to all you anti-feminists out there. Women can rock, they can do it bloody well. Also, avoid getting in sexism debates with this lot, they sound pissed off enough to cause you some serious damage.