Bands You Should Know: Irish Punk Rockers M(h)aol Rage Against Rape Culture On Single/Video “Asking For It”

Mhaol
Photo by Naomi Williams

Irish punk rockers M(h)aol have shared a new song and music video with the release of “Asking For It,” as well as announcing their impending debut album Attachment Styles. Unabashedly articulate in their ability to channel both their frustrated rage and capacity for healing, the new track follows the release of previous singles “Bored of Men” and “No One Ever Talks To Us.” Since the release of their debut EP Gender Studies, the volatile five-piece has emerged as a crucial voice in a typically male-dominated scene.

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With “Asking For It,” lead singer Roisin Nic Ghearailit has pieced together an attempt to encapsulate and eviscerate rape culture. Taking all its victim blaming and male coddling and lighting it on fire in a way that only M(h)aol can. Over the song’s thundering backing, Roisin lets loose her stalwart howls as she tracks the narrative of rape that both women (1 in 4) and men (1 in 10) find themselves victims of.

And even against the song’s lively rhythms — which are cut into by a cacophony of angry riffs — the whole thing takes increasingly dark turns with every line. “When I screamed in the night / I wasn’t screaming for you,” she roars. “I was afraid of the things / That you’d do.”

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The music video for “Asking For It,” directed by Zoë Greenway, sees Roisin finding catharsis as she rages along a gloomy coastline. Preceded by the above statistics — including one that informs audiences that 28% of female students, 10% of male students, and 28% of non-binary students have been sexually assaulted — the song hones in one of the ways we harm one another in such violently violating ways. But as excruciating and traumatic an experience, the one thing that seems to bind M(h)aol together is the belief that healing is possible.

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“Asking For It” is available on M(h)aol Bandcamp, with all proceeds going to Women’s Aid Ireland.

Alternatively, please donate to your local rape crisis center.
Counseling Dublin Rape Crisis Centre- https://www.drcc.ie/support/
Rape Crisis Network Ireland- https://www.rcni.ie/
National Sexual Assault Treatment Units- https://www2.hse.ie/services/sexual-a…
Kinergy Sex Abuse & Rape Counselling- http://www.kinergy.org.uk/
Rape Crisis England & Wales- https://rapecrisis.org.uk/get-help/

Visit M(h)aol on their Bandcamp, Twitter, and Instagram to stay updated on new releases and tour announcements.

M(h)aol tour
January 31st | Birkenhead, UK | Future Yard^
February 1st | Manchester, UK | YES (Basement)^ SOLD OUT
February 4th | Brighton, UK | Komedia Studio^ SOLD OUT
February 5th | Bristol, UK | Strange Brew^
March 15th – 20th | SXSW, Austin
May 19th | Newcastle, UK | Bobiks
May 20th | Glasgow, UK | The Hug and Pint
May 22nd | Leeds, UK | Hyde Park Book Club
May 23rd | Manchester, UK | YES (Pink Room)
May 25th | London, UK | Boston Music Room
May 26th | Brighton, UK | The Hope & Ruin

Words by Steven Ward

Watch the music video for “Asking For It” the new single from M(h)aol below!

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