Saturday, January 22, 2022

Bell Jar 7" ep (1994, eMpTy)

I had encountered this 7" with it's curious and charming looking sleeve multiple times before I finally dove in and claimed it a few years back at a price I couldn't refuse. Bell Jar (alternately spelled Belle Jar on the labels of the wax itself) were an all-female, Seattle trio who happened to buck the more conevntional trends of their era and region, specializing in fuzzy, mid-fi indie rock, not so much on the grunge or riot grrrl tip. Still, these young women were not afraid to get a little abrasive, not to mention insular and even a tad dissonant. Bright and cheery music this certainly is not, occasionally recalling what Sonic Youth were attempting around the same time (check out "Hornet"). They throw a lot of minor chords around, the lyrics are a little underwritten, and guitarist Kellie Wohlrab and bass-wrangler Heather Garden aren't always perfectly in pitch, yet this warts 'n all penchant is what helps this record succeed, generally anyway. It was to be their one and only release, with Garden eventually migrating to the equally obscure Small Stars later in the decade. 

01. Dear Mom
02. Waste
03. Hornet
04. Here

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