BioSo, you think you know Bettie Serveert, huh? The Dutch combo that set the template for '90s indie rock with their classic 1992 debut, Palomine, and its follow-ups, Lamprey (1995), and Dust Bunnies (1997). The energetic outfit that peddled their infectious, hard-edged guitar pop on numerous tours with colleagues like Belly, Dinosaur Jr., and Buffalo Tom.
Hmmm. Maybe you want to reconsider just how thoroughly acquainted with Bettie Serveert you are. Because if you approach Attagirl, the band's seventh full-length (and their first for Minty Fresh), with those opinions set in stone, you'll be as shocked as any teenybopper who slapped on Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band back in 1967 expecting to hear "I Want To Hold Your Hand, Pt. 2." Oh, the players are the same. Singer Carol van Dyk, guitarist Peter Visser, and bassist Herman Bunskoeke remain front-and-center. But Attagirl is the work of a band refreshed, one full of new ideas. Put simply, this ain't your old college radio director's Bettie Serveert.
Fifteen years and six previous albums (including their 1998 limited edition set of Velvet Underground covers, Venus And Furs) have passed since Bettie Serveert first formed in Amsterdam, yet they continue to evolve. Their secrets for long-lasting success? "No relationships within the band!" jokes Peter. "And, knowing when you need to back off, and give people space, and keep quiet." And also, as Attagirl reinforces, ears that remain open to fresh ideas. "I listen to a lot of new music," says Carol. "Even things that aren't my cup of tea, I'll listen to, to see if there's anything I can learn from it. I figure, if I really hate something, if it triggers that strong a reaction, there must be something good about it, too."