The Petrol Girls, Talk of Violence

Post-hardcore, punk band The Petrol Girls released their latest album last year, Talk of Violence. 

By Jane Howkins.

The Petrol Girls are a London based punk band, named after the French ‘Pétroleuses’ – a group of mythical, Parisian women who allegedly burnt down most of Paris in 1871, in support of the Paris Commune. It’s become more of a mythical tale now than anything else, but that gives quite a fiery impression of a group that would take such a name for their band moniker, and indeed, The Petrol Girls are as fierce as you might expect.

Political themes are a mainstay of The Petrol Girls’ music, as they should be with any good punk band. It’s fairly obvious from the lyrical content that the band are feminists, and whilst we think that’s a good thing, there are some who will be put off by this. If so, the Petrol Girls probably aren’t for you. If that’s the case though, and we’re being totally honest, most punk in general probably isn’t for you.

However, we can appreciate that not everyone is into politics, which is why it’s a welcome addition that The Petrol Girls are also fairly proficient at playing their instruments. Long gone are the days when punk musicians could barely string three chords together, and whilst the music on Talk of Violence does come from the more hardcore section of the punk sound, the band are obviously very talented. There may be screaming, and there may be heavy guitars, but there are also staggered, jazzy riffs, which are actually rather surprising (and very welcome) in this line of work. There’s a fire in the bellies of this band, and the passionate way in which lead vocalist and guitarist Ren Aldridge sings and screams alongside such breath taking music is simply awe inspiring, especially consider this is only their debut full length release.

   Talk of Violence proves that the Petrol Girls are an excellent addition to the hardcore punk scene, and the innovation displayed here is extremely welcome in a genre that can sometimes be resistant to change.