Girlschool: Guilty As Sin

New Wave Of British Heavy Metallists still waving.

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Reviewing bands like Girlschool is an exercise in avoiding the dreaded words ‘A** G*’. Girlschool have done enough to be considered past that novelty tag and we should no more refer to them as an A G*** band than we should Motörhead an all-boy band.

Guilty As Sin shows a band whose cylinders are in good working order, the group having carried on determinedly since the very sad death of singer Kelly Johnson in 2007.

They belong at the minimal, no-nonsense, punky end of metal, focused on the rocky road to the end of each short song, with no poodle fretting or preening. Take It Like A Band clatters frantically along, sending pedestrians diving for their lives as it works up a cheerful storm. Stayin’ Alive, a cover of the Bee Gees classic, demonstrates amply that the song could have borne any treatment, including the metallic one here.

Finally, Everyone Loves (Saturday Night) is one of those statements of the obvious, like Joan Jett’s I Love Rock’n’Roll, which periodically have to be made, and with requisite gusto. Rock on, Girlschool crew.

David Stubbs

David Stubbs is a music, film, TV and football journalist. He has written for The Guardian, NME, The Wire and Uncut, and has written books on Jimi Hendrix, Eminem, Electronic Music and the footballer Charlie Nicholas.