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Calculated

Heavens to Betsy

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Album Review

Before her days in Sleater-Kinney, Corin Tucker was belting out screams with her riot grrrl duo, Heavens to Betsy. Along with drummer and bassist Tracy Sawyer, Tucker crafted 12 songs of pissed-off, bitter confusion. As with much material in the genre, the lyrics focus on failed relationships and the hurt feelings having emerged as a result. However, one glaring exception is the song "White Girl," which is a rare introspective look by someone in the indie scene addressing the audience directly about the topic of racism. The rest of the album benefits from a guitar-driven garage music that is paired up with the riot grrrl sound of the Northwest from the early '90s. Intensely fierce, even when the tempo slows down, Sawyer keeps the beats tight and Tucker is always brimming over with passion and the kind of power of which many bands in the hardcore scene aren't even capable. Not so much in an overtly masculine manner, but through intelligently refined viciousness transmitted via the appropriate musical spectrum. While Heavens to Betsy wasn't as well known as Bikini Kill or Bratmobile (largely due to their short career), it hardly means they didn't have the potential to stack up. That being said, Calculated should be included as essential listening for all fans of riot grrrl.

Customer Reviews

heartbreaking and beautiful

I taped this album off of a UMASS-Lowell college radio broadcast because I couldn't find it anywhere in any record store at the time. I'm so excited that it is now so easy to acquire! The vocals and music on this record will break your heart they are so gut wrenching and powerful. Heavens to Betsey were truly giving their audience their blood, brains and soul. I highly recommend this album to any fans of punk music or the old riot grrrl genre, you won't be dissapointed.

I'm Taking Everything

Heavens to Betsy were one of the only riot grrrl bands that actually made you believe they were, in fact, not kidding. Powerful and raw. Calculated still scares me a little...

It's calculated.

I love this album, & the band. There are, however, several EPs from the band that are not on iTunes. It would be nice if iTunes would carry these.

Biography

Genre: Alternative

Years Active: '90s

Pioneering riot-grrrl duo Heavens to Betsy was formed in 1991 by singer/guitarist Corin Tucker and drummer Tracy Sawyer, longtime friends from the Eugene, OR area who began collaborating on music while attendng Evergreen State College in Olympia, WA. A series of compilation appearances preceded the band's Kill Rock Stars single "These Monsters Are Real," followed in 1994 by the LP Calculated; in the wake...
Full Bio
Calculated, Heavens to Betsy
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