Listen: Irish intersectional Feminist Post-Punk Band M(h)aol Share ‘Asking For It’

Irish intersectional feminist post-punk band M(h)aol return with a timely and poignant new single, ‘Asking For It’ with all proceeds going to Women’s Aid.

Originally planned for release in May, M(h)aol have decided now is the time for it to be heard “as women everywhere share collective anger at the reality of male violence against women”. This follows a particularly hard-hitting week of women being victim to horrific abuse in the most unforgiving forms. With heavy hearts, many women and gender minorities have listened and shared their own accounts of violence from men, while unifying in the continual fight against it.

Vocals from Róisín Nic Ghearailt in ‘Asking For It’ build an undeniable tension that rumbles on throughout until eventually catapulting into a choral clamour which only heightens the feeling of despair. A backdrop of guttural guitars and powerful drums accelerate alongside the crescendo chant of “was I asking for it?” with Ghearailt’s vocals breaking amidst the affecting outcries.

“How much did you drink / What did you do? / Did you feel afraid when it was him and you? / Were you asking for it?” These questions shine a spotlight on the incessant victim shaming that continue to infiltrate the discourse around violence against women, as well as gaslighting that often occurs when women and gender minorities are shunned and told they’ve overreacted or misinterpreted the unnerving variants of sexual harassment. “Heard what they say about girls like me /I’m just a dumb bitch that left the party with him / Was I asking for it? / Did I ask for it?”

The Dublin post-punk outfit are pushing forward in this fight for justice and deserve to be heard, their message ringing out loud and clear; “Was I asking for it? / No!”

The new issue of So Young is out now. It’s sold out in print but you can read the digital edition below.