New Jersey trio Rita Fishbone have been making noise in recent months playing shows among the likes of Pinegrove and Cende, putting down stakes somewhere along the border of scuzzy punk and math rock. Still, their debut EP, Spilt Milk, leaks beyond either category with a startling intimacy.
These four songs are brave and hard to swallow, rife with blunt intimations of issues surrounding eating and abuse and the most trying aspects of womanhood. “I am just a hole / I am just a body / take advantage of me / no one’s gonna believe me,” Anastasia Lasky sings, hostility riding on every word, with chilling relevance in the wake of the multitude of abuse incidences that have come to light in the music industry as of late. Bare and provocative lines like these are laid before us against a turbulent backdrop of distorted guitars that clear into pleasantly angular, mathy sections. The darkness that persists here is countered with rightful anger: the trio espouse a true punk ethos, attacking thorny matters with an emotional rawness that grants the music an affirmative sense of power. Lasky’s voice wounds with its nuance, each word cutting through on a new note, and even as she closes the EP with the refrain “I’m spread out so thin / my plate is too big,” there’s enough confidence in her tone to suggest better days are coming.