There has been a lot of debate (complaint) recently about the under-representation (and misrepresentation) of women in the film industry. However, the music industry, seems to be far ahead of its visual cousin, something that it consistently manages to do in so many aspects, from origination to distribution.
While women have always been strong vocal performers in the male-dominated field of indie rock, there is a growing proliferation of female-led bands. In the last year, Savages have risen from relative obscurity to being a hit at this year’s Glastonbury Festival, as well as at SXSW in the US. East London band Bleech, fronted by the O’Neill sisters Jen (guitar/vocals) and Katherine (bass), are getting ready for some of that action. The sisters come from a musical home. Their dad is a drummer, and when Jen was learning the guitar they would play together in the loft, and before long younger sister Katherine was joining them. “They bought me a bass for Christmas one year, giving me the hint to learn it”, she said. Their old school friend Matt Bick came in on drums to form Bleech. “We’ve been around for five years”, said Jen. “In the last three years we’ve done over a hundred gigs each year, just in the UK. One year we did a hundred gigs just in London.” They already have two EPs and album under their belt, with another on the way.
We met at their local pub on the gentile, eastern edges of London. Jen, being the eldest, was clearly the leader, but their familiarity meant they would often all answer at once, happily talking over each other, or finishing each others sentences, without any need to adhere to conventions of politeness, which, after a slightly reticent start, made for a much more relaxed conversation that strayed to all manner of topics such as seventies rock bands, Thatcherite politics and the state of the music industry.
Read the whole interview in Piano Magazine
To find their latest tour dates visit www.bleech.me.uk