Slits


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Cut (1979), 5/10
Return Of The Giant Slits (1981), 5/10
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Translated by Emma Schertz

The all-female British group the Slits (Viv Albertine, guitar; Ari Upp Forster, vocals; Tessa Pollitt, bass; Palmolive, drums), formed in the 1976 punk rock era, was something of an ancestor to “riot grrrl” and foxcore movements, which would explode in America ten years later. In contrast with the female groups that had preceded them, from the Runaways to the Go-Gos, the Slits took themselves seriously and were taken seriously. Instead of parodying male groups, their early singles Number One Enemy , Man Next Door and In The Beginning coined a ferocious punk-rock inspired by problems that women face.

 

It was therefore a shock to hear Cut (Antilles, 1979), a much more musical album thanks to drummer Budgie of Siouxsie Sioux, who followed the Clash’s lead in rediscovering Jamaican music, and transformed punk rage into quasi New Age spirituality (Love And Romance, Typical Girls, Newtown, Ping Pong Affair).

 

Return Of The Giant Slits (CBS, 1981) would prove even worse, attempting to turn the Slits into a commercial world-music group.

 

Ari Upp Forster and Tessa Pollitt reformed the group to record the EP Revenge of the Killer Slits (2007) and the album Trapped Animal (2009) that sounded like collections of leftovers.

Slits (Y, 1980) contains home recordings of the early days.
Le britanniche Slits (Viv Albertine alla chitarra, Ari Upp Forster al canto, Tessa Pollitt al basso, Palmolive alla batteria), formate nel 1976 del punk-rock, furono un po' le progenitrici delle "riot grrrls" e del foxcore che sarebbero esplosi dieci anni dopo negli USA. A differenza dei gruppi femminili che le avevano precedute, dalle Runaways alle Go-Go's, le Slits si presero sul serio e si fecero prendere sul serio. Invece di parodiare i gruppi maschili, si misero a suonare un feroce punk-rock ispirato ai problemi delle ragazze sui singoli Number One Enemy, Man Next Door, e In The Beginning There Was Rhythm.

Fu pertanto uno shock ascoltare Cut (Antilles, 1979), un album molto piu` musicale, grazie anche al batterista udgie dei Siouxsie Sioux, che seguiva i Clash nello riscoprire la musica Giamaicana, e trasformava la rabbia punk in spiritualita` quasi new age (Love And Romance, Typical Girls, Newtown, Ping Pong Affair).

Return Of The Giant Slits (CBS, 1981) avrebbe fatto anche di peggio, cercando di trasformarle in un gruppo di world-music commerciale.

Ari Upp Forster and Tessa Pollitt reformed the group to record the EP Revenge of the Killer Slits (2007) and the album Trapped Animal (2009) that sounded like collections of leftovers.

Slits (Y, 1980) contains home recordings of the early days.

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