The Menstrual Cramps

The Menstrual Cramps

The Menstrual Cramps| Queen Cult | Pink Suits
The Shacklewell Arms, London
06 May 2022

Get in Her Ears did an incredible job by organising a night to promote queer artists, remembering that there is nothing wrong with being who you are.

The event is taking place at The Shacklewell Arms, a lovely, quirky pub hidden in the hipster and colourful Dalston. This is my second time at this venue, I’m excited to be back to see the artists performing, who are new to me. As I get there, they are running a bit late with the soundcheck, so I take the chance to have a super fun chat with the lovely person at the door. Walking into an empty room, that soon gets filled up once the first band starts playing. One of the first things I notice is all the weird paintings on the wall, that seem so disconnected, yet they make perfect sense with the vibe of the place.

Queen Cult 4 - The Shacklewell Arms, LDN - 06/-5/22

Queen Cult are a femme-queer fronted four pieces rock band from Macclesfield, Cheshire. As soon as they come on stage lead vocalist and guitarist Maisie Johnson and bassists Leila Jacklin start to entertain the crowd with their witty and funny humour between songs. With their strong guitar riffs and meaningful lyrics, they continue to be at the forefront of the female empowerment space. Queen Cult are very much an alive, focused band, able to unite people with their music for a greater cause. Tapping their feet on the floor, the crowd is starting to warm up and they are begging for more. They have various festival dates forthcoming, including being invited to perform at Rivfest in Warrington, set up by the River Reeves Foundation in honour of his band Viola Beach and the rescheduled Hit The North Festival in October.

Pink Suits 3 - The Shacklewell Arms, LDN - 06/05/22

Almost no break at all and Pink Suits take on the stage quietly, almost like they don’t want to get noticed yet. But let me tell you, as soon as they start playing this non-binary, queer feminist punk rock rage duo based in Margate blows the crowd away. Pink Suit make loud, aggressive, political, punk noise that is a rebellion hymn about politics, activism and resistance to binary gender expectations, questioning how voices and bodies can be used as a form of protest. Are You Gay Yet? is the first song on tonight’s setlist and gets the crowd involved within the first note. The duo is formed by Ray on vocals and drums and Lennie on vocals and guitar. Ray’s voice is high pitched and loud, so corrosive that it gets inside your bones making sure that you hear every single word of their songs, while Lennie’s sarcastic and cynical. They make a superb team. Their set finishes with my favourite of the night, Pink Suits Everyone.

The Menstrual Cramps 3 - The Shacklewell Arms, LDN - 06/05/22

Moving on to the last artist of the night; The Menstrual Cramps, a DIY punk queer band from Bristol. Their music is a mix of Nazi kicking, guitar swinging and feminist singing resulting in a riot of this generation. Lead vocalist Emilia Elfrida with her witty humour ignites the stage with brutally honest lyrics to empower women to speak their minds. Shaking her body and showing her sensuality does not seem to be a problem for Emilia, as she uses it as a weapon against the patriarchy. During the performance, a huge mosh pit opens in the room, with half the crowd pushing back and forth, then being joined by Emilia, which makes it an incredible add on to the already mind-blowing set. This kick-ass band are a part of a new era of musicians giving everyone a taste of feminist-punk heritage.

Please note: Use of these images in any form without permission is illegal.

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Follow The Menstrual Cramps: bandcamp | Facebook | Instagram | Twitter
Follow Queen Cult: soundcloud | Facebook | Instagram | Twitter
Follow Pink Suits: website | bandcamp | Facebook | Instagram

Previous coverage on Louder Than War 
All punk rock is queer: Pink Suits are the most vital new punk band in the UK
The Menstrual Cramps (2018)  are the missing link between Crass and the Spice Girls if they’d read the SCUM Manifesto

All words and photos by Selena Ferro: Instagram | Facebook | Twitter | portfolio

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I am a freelance photographer based in London, UK. I am originally from Italy and moved to England in 2012 to follow my dreams. With my passion for live music, in 2017 I took a leap of faith and become a photographer taking photos in local pubs and small venues collaborating with variety of webzine and now photographing and reviewing for Louder Than War.

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