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ERASE ERRATA'S POST-RIOT GRRRL, POST-FEMINIST POST-PUNK // The Bay Area quartet creates a new kind of noise.
Interview Jenny Tatone Photography Jim McGinnis
Ellie Erickson

"It was so impressive to me how restrained we were and how polite we were about all the injustice. I felt like we were all just eating shit and smiling. And the song came out of that and it just exploded." — Jenny Hoysten, re "How to Tell Yourself From A Television"
Tatone: You've also been called post-riot grrrl. Do you feel, in any way, associated with that movement in music, or affected by it, connected to it?

Hoysten: It definitely had a big impact on me when I was like 16, 17 years old.

Sparta: I wasn't really affected by that. I was in Texas, so that wasn't really going on. I missed that whole thing, but all the riot grrrl musicians are still around.

Erickson: We play with them a lot.

Sparta: And we play with them, so we have a semi-community with them in a certain way, but it's not like we all identify with them.

Tatone: Is there any sort of feminist thought in the music you make?

Jaffe: Sure, not necessarily in terms of an agenda.

Erickson: I wouldn't say that anything really has an agenda necessarily. We're empowered women [laughing].

Jaffe: I really think there are a lot of girls out there playing, you know, fucked-up guitar or whatever, and that makes me feel...

Sparta: There are so many girls playing music, I think it's sort of funny how there's such an emphasis on...

Erickson: Do people forget — like from band to band — "Oh my God! All these girls are playing music too!" [laughing].

Hoysten: It's the scene we're in, 'cause we're around that stuff all the time. I've lived places where I've been like, "There's no girl bands in this town. I have to form a band just so that there's not just a bunch of dudes playing music." I mean, we're definitely privileged to be in a scene where that's not the case, so I think it's easier for us.

Tatone: Has there been any discrimination, then, that you've felt, being musicians, being girls?

Sparta: Sound guys — yeah — especially during sound checks.

Tatone: What do they do?

Sparta: Think we don't know anything about our own equipment.

Hoysten: They tell us like where to plug in our cords [laughing]: "You plug in your cord right here." More just ignorance.

Tatone: As musicians, do you live your life day-to-day, or do you have long-term plans?

Hoysten: We have places we'd like to go and, right now, we're planning on writing for a second record.

Erickson: We have like six-month plans.

Hoysten: Generally, we think like six months ahead.


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