This is an anthem for women who’ve made up their minds. They’ve had enough of putting up with a relationship that was emotionally, physically, sexually or financially abusive. Maybe it was all of those things. Or maybe their partners were dismissive and unloving, depleting rather than strengthening them. Maybe it was just too much work. In any case, these women are tired, they’ve given too much and they’re fed up of being disrespected. The title of ANML’s song says it all – It’s Over.
ANML, an LA based and Canadian born singer, songwriter, producer and advocate, feels a person leaves a relationship “when it becomes unfulfilling or unbearable.” She tells me, “I see us all as animals, and I watch other species as an example. They bond. They stay together. So to be in a place where it’s time to let go, your needs are not being met.”
ANML emphasises the need to discuss what abuse looks like more openly: “This is different for everyone but it takes a lot of shit until we let go. And we shouldn’t have a high threshold for shit.” She highlights the importance of being educated about abuse so that girls and women have the power to choose what they will do in any situation they might find themselves in. “We should know the signs of abuse so we’re able to decide. We should understand this better.”
The video for It’s Over – a poignant display of liberation and self-love – has received over one million hits. ANML says the women in the video are not actors: “Some were in abusive relationships, some needed to say goodbye. I wanted to create a platform for women to talk about their experiences.”
The video is raw in other aspects, too. ANML says there were no enhancements, no make-up, no frills. She adds, “It was just the way it was shot. We’re all real people.” In fact, she originally tried shooting professionally, but the video we see -filmed on her birthday in her bedroom the night before moving to L.A. – is the version she found to be most authentic. “So that’s how the video was made. To weave stories together.”
To tackle a problem as systemic and pervasive as gender violence and abuse, we need advocacy that spreads throughout every sector of our society – including the arts. Music is a powerful and emotive form of advocacy, and the potential for artists to create widespread changes in attitudes and behaviour seems unlimited. Show your love for ANML’s music on Soundcloud, Facebook or Twitter.