Dream Nails
Dream Nails



London-based band Dream Nails describe themselves as queer, feminist “punk witches” who write “hexes not songs”. It’s true that their output does often seem to transcend the musical, and the group’s self titled debut album is almost closer to a zine, or a sketch show than a traditional LP. A lot of this is down to the inclusion of ‘skits’, 10-30 second interludes between songs, incorporating chants, affirmations and news segments; which could feel gimmicky but instead give context and depth to the rest of the album, and the moment it exists in. Dream Nails are a feminist band in the tradition of Riot Grrl, in the sense that feminism forms the band’s raison d’etre, and for the most part, their subject matter. But the landscape has changed dramatically since the early days of Bikini Kill. Intersectionality is an essential part of feminism in 2020, and Dream Nails are well aware of this, creating spaces both virtually and physically which include people of all orientations and gender identities.

The ‘Women and Non-Binary People to the Front’ skit offers a taster of what a Dream Nails gig entails: “Women and non-binary people to the front!” singer Janey Starling shouts into the mic. “The next song is called Vagina Police, but we want to make clear we stand in solidarity with all our trans siblings. We believe in reproductive justice, not all fucking women have vaginas.” Elsewhere, they take on homophobes who watch lesbian porn (on ‘Kiss My Fist’), and capitalist culture (on ‘Corporate Realness’). The tracks are short, mostly running under two minutes – punchy pop-punk with plenty of anthemic rallying cries. There are lighter moments too, like recent single ‘Text Me Back (Chirpse Degree Burns)’ which laments digital dating culture, or ‘Jillian’, a sapphic ode to celebrity fitness instructor Jillian Michaels. It’s by no means a subtle record, but Dream Nails are having a lot of fun, and everyone’s invited to the party.

Loud And Quiet needs your help

The COVID-19 crisis has cut off our advertising revenue stream, which is how we’ve always funded how we promoted new independent artists.

Now we must ask for your help.

If you enjoy our articles, photography and podcasts, please consider becoming a subscribing member. It works out to just £1 per week, to receive our next 6 issues, our 15-year anniversary zine, access to our digital editions, the L&Q brass pin, exclusive playlists, the L&Q bookmark and loads of other extras.