Bettie Serveert maintains the perfect combination between spirit, fluidity, and lo-fi charm. The 90's Dutch grunge pop band's unusual name came from a book by famous tennis player Bettie Stove. Even though they were signed to Matador Records, their location kept them elusive from their label mates. It doesn't hurt that their many hallmark imperfections fit together to create something that still manages to feel fresh and exceptional over twenty five years later.
Carol van Dijk has a unique way of creating a familiar landscape through emotional imagery. In their 1992 single "Tom Boy", she starts the scene on bright and tiny stage with men yelling from the crowd. Rather than crumbling at their misogynistic remarks, the subject camouflages herself as a tomboy to trick them into giving her respect. Instead of feeling pressured and ashamed to do this, van Dijk takes a different approach. She sees it as an empowering tactic to outsmart her oppressors and find resilience in embracing the tomboy label.
Bettie Serveert’s career has spanned the length of 27 years. They have been revered for the unexpected pronunciations of van Dijk's voice, and their loose but striking instrumentals. While many might imitate this style and merely achieve unoriginality, Bettie Serveert's music serves as a touchstone of what makes it all important.
By Katryn Macko