Brisbane's resident techno angel REBEL YELL has just released her first LP Hired Muscle, a cocky collection of tracks with an abrasive energy that proves, in her own words, that she's the boss. A standout among the eight acidic EBM bangers is 'Toxic', a take down of every sleazy dude bro in the music scene and a reaffirmation of Rebel Yell's self empowerment and intense production skills.
Across her production, there's always a simmering power beneath the vintage synth sounds, buzzing acid melodies and thudding kicks and in 'Toxic', it's no different. Its high octane percussion, featuring rubbery fills and energetic hats, sets the tone for the whole track and ramps up the energy right from the start. Cutting through everything is Rebel Yell's biting lyrics, altered to sound cold and metallic but still filled with a spite and self-assuredness that is completely addictive.
The music video, directed by Triana Hernandez and edited by Rebel Yell herself, distills the powerful energy of the track and its message into a gritty DIY visual. She luxuriates in the back seat of her chauffeured convertible and drinks bubbly in a bubble bath, practically defining the phrase "boss bitch" alongside her badass posse. As she repeats "back off don't touch me get off my wave... get off my stage," she just poses and glares through her sunglasses, by the pool and in the car. Deadpan, serious and bitchy in the best way. Do not fuck with Rebel Yell.
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Just like in all of her visuals for her tracks, the seriousness of the techno scene is completely flipped with playful joy and badass attitude. Her humour in the face of the rest of the scene is an outlier, and seeing it sparks a tangible feeling of her own joy and love for her art and the scene. 'Toxic' is the latest single from Rebel Yell's debut album Hired Muscle, a collection of tracks with a new perspective on the tropes of techno and EBM, incorporating a grungy DIY feel, hypnotic polyrhythms and acidic synthlines. Click here to head to her bandcamp now to stream and download the whole album, or cop it on a freaking sweet swiss army knife USB. Catch her on tour next month, dates below!
Saturday 7 July
Sydney // Hex Yellow
Thursday 12 July
Brisbane // The Foundry
Lil Pom Pom
Friday 13 July
Melbourne Launch // The Tote - Upstairs
$10 + bf
Brooke Powers DJ
HIRED MUSCLE is out now via Rice Is Nice. Stream/buy here.
PHOTO BY Rose Pure
WORDS BY HOLLY O’NEILL