Short and just a little bit sweet, the self-titled EP from Montreal duo skunk is a little more power to the people.
With a bio like “we’re skunk and we stink”, I knew to expect some amount of snark from the self-titled EP by skunk, and it did not disappoint. From Montreal, Lauren Spear and Cotey Pope team up with Daniel Romano to create this pop-punk ode to women’s rights; a cheeky protest against the patriarchy.
With opener “CRAZY”, skunk set the EP’s catchy-with-an-edge tone, claiming “I’m not crazy, I just have feelings too”. A forced hysteria can be felt in the fuzz of the distorted guitar, representing the impossibility of being labelled emotionally unstable by oppressive masculinity. Demonstrating just how toxic masculinity operates, the singer asks: “Am I insane? Am I crazy because I raise my voice?”
“GASLIGHT ME” turns that question back on the oppressor while the instruments express the impossible task of being made to feel crazy for having feelings and self-respect. The song is a challenge to anyone using gaslighting as an oppressive tactic by making victims question their own realities. Too often, oppressive ideologies against women manifest as self-criticism. With an accessible feminist message, skunk hits that nail right on the head while creating a sonic “safe space” to feel out, and work through, all of the complicated emotions that stem from toxic masculinity.
“L.O.V.E. & R.E.S.P.E.C.T” is a bit of an anthem, demanding love, respect, and equality in the line, “my baby loves me, we practice c-o-n-s-e-n-t”. “MY TIME” is a slower, more sentimental jam, showing the softer side of love in even our toxic relationships. Final track “NO MAN IS SAFE” is a reminder and a warning to “guard your heart and shield your body”— a lesson that far too many women have had to learn, and overcome in order to move forward in healthy relationships with men.
skunk’s EP is relatable in a very real way for anyone who identifies as female or a feminist ally; but it is also just a fun set of songs to jam along to. Short and just a little bit sweet, skunk is a little more power to the people.