Kiss Me, Killer were among a varied, ass-kicking lineup of bands at this year’s LaDIYFest, which took place at the Southville Club, Bristol.
LaDIYfest, if you didn’t already know, is a non-profit, DIY collective, celebrating the achievements of self-defining women and people of oppressed genders through a festival of music, arts and skill sharing. There’s an international movement of such festivals, stretching back to the first Ladyfest in Olympia, Washington in 2000.
During the daytime attendees could enjoy workshop on a range of themes or browse stalls from a wide range of activist groups and artists. Kiss Me, Killer’s Cat had been on hand all day among the volunteers and our drummer AJ produced the funky poster.
In the evening the festival moved from workshops to live music. The organisers had hired in a great PA and Kiss Me, Killer sorted cabs and amps for bands that needed to travel light.
First band on were local Bristol guitar’n’drums band Spunking Octochoke who served up a varied, manic set of songs that calumniated in the audience chanting along to signature tune, Power pussy!, which I now sing every time my cat wanders into the room. Anyway, the band really warmed up the crowd and got them ready for what was to come.
Next up, and many people’s ‘find’ of the night, was Dispute Settlement Mechanism who’d come all the way from Leamington Spa. The bass, drums and vox lineup served up pounding, primal beats, distorted basslines and searing vocals with lyrics exploring trans feminism and other political themes. They really went down a storm.
We took to the stage next, our first live performance for over a month, but we were in pretty good shape, powering through all the songs on our forthcoming EP and more besides. Cheri, our photographer and merch grrrl extraordinaire, managed to capture some incredible shots, including some of Nat and Holly getting up close with the crowd – definitely one for the Kiss Me, Killer coffee table book.
Members of Drunken Butterfly were instrumental in creating LaDIYfest 2017 and took to the Southville Club stage with their folk-punk mix.There were furious bits, then softer bits, then more furious bits. A great, great set.
London band Screaming Toenail had to pull out due to ill health but, no matter, as Young Adventurers proved a brilliant headline act. If you thought Devon was all about taking your Nan for a cream tea, think again – Exeter is clearly a hotbed of incendiary new rock bands. The band met at an event called School of Frock, which encouraged women to pick up instruments and form bands. That was three years ago and the Young Adventurers are now a brilliant live act combining riotous rock with brilliant melodies. Singer/guitarist Catherine sported a beautiful Gordon Smith GS1.
With one band pulling out there was even time for an impromptu disco at the end. A great gig!