Hands Off Gretel is a grunge/punk band from South Yorkshire, UK. Currently, they are Lauren Tate (vocals, guitar), Sean McAvinue (guitar), Sam Hobbins (drums), and Joe Scotcher (bass). Lauren Tate is a little punk pixie with a great big voice and a love for baby doll dresses who worships ’90s grunge and riot grrrl punk. Hands Off Gretel sounds like Nirvana fronted by the love child of Courtney Love and Brody Dalle whose nanny was Bikini Kill‘s Kathleen Hanna.
Selected discography (Hands Off Gretel):
“My Size” (2016). Single. 1 track. Choice cut: “My Size”.
Burn the Beauty Queen (2016). 13 tracks. Choice cuts: “Queen Universe”, “Bad Egg”, “One Eyed Girl”. Other good cuts: “Always Right”, “Oh Shit”, “World Against She”, “Under the Bed”, “Awfully Miserable”, “Eating Simon”, “Teethin'”, “Push the Girl”, “Plasters”, “Little Man”.
Bedroom Sessions (2016). Demos + alternate versions.
Selected videos (Hands Off Gretel):
Watch this awesome performance of “My Size” live at Adelphi Hall (here). They sound amazing for sure but I must admit that I love Lauren‘s outfit, too!
Selected discography (Lauren Tate):
My Reflection (2014). EP. 5 tracks. Choice cut: “Trapped In My Skin”. Other good cuts: “Take Me Away”, “Your UnHappy”, “The Black”, “My Reflection”.
Selected videos (Lauren Tate):
That performance is amazing!
My thoughts… Hands Off Gretel‘s biggest asset is Lauren Tate‘s powerful pipes! Her passionate croon explodes often into raging Courtney Love-esque wails and Brody Dalle-esque snarls to accentuate the angsty intensity her introspective lyrics over the grungy aggression of her all-male band! Hands Off Gretel‘s debut EP was offered free online and that’s where I discovered the band and the amazingly talented Lauren Tate. “Be Mine” and “My Size” are awesome Nirvana-esque singles but Burn the Beauty Queen is definitely one of the best albums I’ve heard this year! The album opens with the Hole-esque scorcher “Queen Universe”, then kicks into the album’s first single “One Eyed Girl”. It’s a great one-two punch but the moody 3rd song is the knockout! “Bad Egg” opens with a spooky guitar line kind of like Nirvana‘s “Come As You Are”. However, that guitar line and the driving rhythm of the song remind me of a grunge version of the instro surf classic “High Wall” by The Wailers. Well, actually it sounds more like the awesome cover of that song by ’90s retro surf band The Phantom Surfers. It’s an obscure reference, I know! Anyway, “Always Right”, the punkiest track, is my next favorite, followed by “World Against She”, “Oh Shit”, “Under the Bed”, and “Awfully Miserable”.
Oh, and Cleveland’s own Alternative Press, in Feb 2016, named them “A Band You Need To Know”. So, get to know them! Now!
Read my original post about Hands Off Gretel on MHE when I first discovered them (here).
Sorry, but I just love that outfit!