M(h)aol: Asking For It

Rising post punk force, M(h)aol, announce their debut album, Attachment Styles, out February 3rd, 2023 via TULLE Collective, and introduced with new single Asking For It, a dynamite themed on sexual assault.

Asking For It is a visceral and personal song which has evolved over the years, and it was the first one singer Róisn ever wrote in an attempt to process some of her own experiences and feelings surrounding r*pe culture.

On the track, Róisn comments: "I wrote it initially in 2016 then revisited it in 2020. I was shocked by how much internalised victim blaming there was in the lyrics. I rewrote it, then we recorded it and it was released to raise money for Women's Aid in 2021. The album version is a lot angrier than the 2021 one and almost satirical insofar as it's highlighting how ludicrous the notion of anyone 'asking for it' is."

The video which comes with the song was directed by bassist Zoë with additional input from Róisín, and it's a fragile and highly artistic representation of the music's rawness and anger.

Zoë reveals: "This has been the most difficult video I’ve made for M(h)aol to date. There’s so much power and emotion in Róisín’s lyrics and performance, so we worked really hard to create a responsible and sensitive portrayal of this experience she’s conveying, do it justice and make people care."

Róisín adds on the video: "I think lots of media and cultural depictions of r*pe can be retraumatising. We wanted the video to be cathartic rather than traumatising. We both wanted to offer resources and highlight services that are available to survivors. The quotes in the video highlight the change in the song too, over the years it became a much more hopeful one."

Zoë concludes: "I hope watching the video inspires compassion and empathy in people. I think it’s important to open channels of communication around sexual assault in a way that validates a victims traumatic experience and shows a path towards a more hopeful and supportive healing journey. I think empathy is paramount in trying to build a better world."

Based between Dublin, London, and Bristol, M(h)aol (pronounced male) are formed of Róisín Nic Ghearailt, Constance Keane, Jamie Hyland, Zoë Greenway, and Sean Nolan.

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