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Women Vinyl, CD & tapes by Women at Norman Records

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Oh hang on so this is the same 'Cassette' released by Viet Cong but now that they are called Preoccupations the name has been altered to match their new identity. To be honest I'd hoped to have drawn a line between Viet Cong and Preoccupations as this was from the time of their superior initial garage influenced recordings but it also begs the question of when their follow up debut album 'Viet Cong' is re-issued  - what will it be called and who will it be by? 

Cindy Lee

Whilst Preoccupations have taken the pounding post punk side of Women and run with it, other Women member Patrick Flegel has charted a more splintered DIY path but one which showcases a stunning ability to carve brilliant melodies out of the ether. Cindy Lee has a talent for falling-apart-at-the-seams lo-fi, shards of noise welded onto exquisite ballads.  

Public Strain

'Public Strain' was the second and sadly last album from Canadian art-fuzz-pop-rock band Women. Taking cues from softly psychedelic 60s rock and dialling the reverb a long way up, the album is somehow immediate and distant and the same time, concluding in the lovely, yearning repeated riffs of 'Eyesore'.

Key / Off Duty Trip

Preoccupations, who you might already know under their previous (and slightly more controversial) name of Viet Cong, step out of the album cycle for a minute with a pair of well-selected cover versions. Yellow Magic Orchestra’s Key and The Raincoats’ Off Duty Trip are both made into brand new things, precisely locating Preoccupations within the rock lineage. 7” on Jagjaguwar.


This is where it all started for the band known as Women (members of whom went on to become Viet Cong/Preoccupations and Cindy Lee). Though follow up Public Strain was their best statement, their self titled debut is well worth investigating for its wild avant rock which, when you aren't looking, breaks out into the wiry tunefulness of the likes of the 1980s New Zealand Dunedin/Flying Nun bands. It spawned a host of imitators but this is the real deal.