Happy 4th Birthday LOUD WOMEN!

A blissfully tired and wee-bit-emotional Sunday following what must be one of my very favourite LOUD WOMEN gigs of all time last night – our 4th birthday celebrations at the Hope & Anchor, with performances Hagar the Womb, Rabies Babies, The Menstrual Cramps, I, Doris, The Other Ones, and Smalltown Tigers. Pure punk rock mayhem, cake everywhere, clothes-swapping, crowd-surfing, all-grrl-mosh-pitting, wall to wall good vibes – we thoroughly birthdayed.

Hopefully someone will post some proper photos of the night, but in the meantime here’s my phone snaps!

Our lovely friend Tony Rounce was, of course, in attendance, and wrote this beautiful post about the evening that was too gorgeous not to share …

I’ve mentioned before that I believe we are living in a new Golden Age for live music.

Anyone doubting my word should have been at the Hope and Anchor last night for Loud Women’s 4th birthday party.

It was rammed to the roof, mind you, but you would have been most welcome and I’m sure a space would have opened up for you.

Five hours of fab bands from locations as far apart as Rimini and, er, Bristol.

Some of the best music you could have heard anywhere in the U.K. last night.

Some of the nicest people you could spend 5 hours in a room with.

All coming together to celebrate the fourth birthday of an impressive collective that exists to promote and further the cause of women/womxn/non-binary/LGBTQ+ in music.

In its four years Loud Women’s live profile has progressed from putting on small gigs in small rooms like the Hope to presenting probably the best and best organised one day annual festival on the planet – this year’s September event showcased 21 bands and singers in 10 hours across two adjacent venues in North London. LW has established itself internationally with overseas chapters across the globe, and has inspired many others across the U.K. to promote the regeneration and growth of a vibrant music scene.

My hat and my whole head is off to the indefatigable Cassie Fox for founding and maintaining the high profile of such a fantastic thing as LW. I am inordinately proud of my own very modest contributions to Team Loud Women as a writer and reviewer, and grateful for the opportunities to say nice things about nice people.

The ‘nice people’ on stage last night all brought plenty to the party, and I am delighted to have added The Other Ones and Italy’s Smalltown Tigers to the ever growing list of ‘bands I must see again in a hurry’. It’s a bit unfair to single anyone out for special commendation but the Menstrual Cramps – to my mind, one of the most important bands to have emerged in the last 40 years – were in unbeatable form (as they usually are, to be fair) and ignited an outbreak of pogoing the likes of which the Hope’s cellar probably hasn’t seen since the late 70s. My own pogoing days may be long gone, but I was there in spirit…

Props, too, to Rabies Babies, LW’s own delightful ‘in house’ combo I, Doris and a back from the dead but very much alive Hagar The Womb. They all did their bit to make the evening fun for one and all and it would have been that much less fun for the absence of any of them.

Oh, and I won the raffle. A couple of times! As sure as I’m a Doris I swear to you it wasn’t fixed…

These are great times to have catholic tastes in music. I’m glad that I still have the energy to be a part of what’s going on and, more importantly perhaps, to feel a part of it.

LW is doing God’s work and I am sure she’s totally impressed…

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