Ah, once again we find ourselves in the mid 90s. The Periscope compilation that Go Sailor first appeared on also features what I think is the best Excuse 17 song. The comp came out between their first record which was released by Chainsaw and their second (and last) record which Kill Rock Stars released. This song was my introduction to the band so let's start with that and work from there.
After hearing and falling in love with that song I promptly bought their first record. The record was almost too catchy to be lumped into the riot grrrl category. The fact that they had 2 guitar players (no bass player) set their sound apart from their contemporaries in Bikini Kill, Heavens To Betsy, and Bratmobile. The lyrical content fit right in with riot grrrl though and that was always how Excuse 17 were described. This song is a great example of the record as a whole.
I loved the first record so much that I was extremely curious to hear their second record. I had a lot of faith that they would change their sound somehow, do something different, and I was excited to hear it. When I first put the record on I immediately sensed that it was going to be angrier. The guitars were louder and more in the front and the record opens with Becca Albee stating, "I'm punker than you, I'm so sure." While there are still the lyrics about dudes being shitty the bigger message of the record is about the music industry and press being shitty. The sense I always got from this record was that disillusionment was already setting in. There were still some catchy songs on the record but overall it was more about being angry and not sugar coating it with hooky guitar parts.
After Such Friends Are Dangerous came out and they toured supporting it the band ended. Carrie Brownstein hit the road a few months later with Sleater-Kinney and never looked back.