Pep Squad—a new project from Holy Wars’ own Kat Leon—have a single out right now titled “Rebel” that you might find appropriate listening right now. Hell, it might even be therapeutic. A raucous, energized ode to resistance, the new track fulfills all the promises of the band’s creed, which is to “unapologetically [interrupt] your complacency.”
Anthemic in all the right ways, “Rebel” is a gritty, exhaustless piece of music more appropriate than ever to keep your mind, body, and soul ready for the revolution. Filled with blaring horns and heady percussion lines—not without a dash of some Sleigh Bells-esque rambunctiousness—“Rebel” bursts and rages with an infectious fire.
Pep Squad itself began as a bit of an accident, with Leon joining friends Curtis Peoples and Dan Whittemore as a way to blow off some steam. A couple months ago, Leon had briefly touched on the project in a Grimy TV Instagram live stream and the excitement was already brewing. Shortly after, Pep Squad’s debut track “Rebel” made its explosive debut on KROQ and it was clear the group we’re destined for more than just casual catharsis.
Leon might’ve had doubts on showcasing “Rebel”—worries Pep Squad would be too eagerly labeled a side-project and distract from Holy Wars—but the balancing act is less fearful with the amount of love she says the new music is getting from fans. And the punk-rock cheerleader feel of it, it’s pulsating and kinetic use of rock, bratty-pop, and its hip-hip structure make Pep Squad too enticing to ignore.