7 Year Bitch
Reviewed on this page:
One of the defining Riot Grrrl acts, though it's de rigeur for such acts to disavow that label (see Bikini Kill). Coming out of Seattle, the all-female group took on sexism and imperialism with a sense of humor and deafeningly loud guitars. Spurred to greater heights by their outrage over the death of friend Mia Zapata, the group was poised to take over the alt-rock universe. Then, they put out a boring directionless followup, and split acrimoniously. From early evidence, the Bitches haven't left much of a mark on history, but if you give them a chance you should get a lot out of their first two releases.
There's a suitably raucous fan site, though it's not being updated any more. (DBW)
Selene Vigil, vocals; Stefanie Sargeant, guitar; Elizabeth Davis, bass; Valerie Agnew, drums. Sargeant died, 1992, replaced by Roisin Dunne. Dunne left 1996, replaced by Lisa Faye Beatty. Group disbanded, late 1997.
Sick 'Em (1992)
7 Year Bitch released their debut just as the Riot Grrrl scene was being noticed by tastemakers and critics. It's relentlessly lo-fi, with minimal overdubs or solos, garage-level recording quality, frequently incomprehensible yelled vocals, and droning distorted power chords on guitar (Stefanie Sargeant, who died after this was recorded but before it was released). The liner notes contain innumerable photos of band members giving the finger to the camera - okay, we get the idea. Frequently they hit on an enjoyable riff ("Gun," "You Smell Lonely"), and when you can make out the words, they're raw and amusing ("In Lust You Trust," "No Fucking War"). Most of the tunes are by bassist Elizabeth Davis while most the words are by Vigil; drummer Valerie Agnew co-wrote the lyrics to the classic "Dead Men Don't Rape." (DBW)
¡Viva Zapata! (1994)
Gato Negro (1996)
Crying shame, indeed.