A quartet of extraordinary female-fronted bands took over Brooklyn Bazaar with a fierceness and strength that forecasted the approaching storms of their music stardom. The lineup was headlined by Brooklyn’s THICK, but also generated lots of additional buzz due to the NYC debut of the New Zealand band Miss June. The show had been originally scheduled for Zone One at Elsewhere, but as some controversy is swirling around with one of their investors, the bands all decided to move the event out of respect for the spirit of the event that celebrated the power of women in rock. All four outfits were truly astounding, and yet no one band took over the spotlight more than the other, as it proved to be a night for embracing the sisterhood of rock n’ roll which also managed to produce more than a few surprises along the way.
The band Groupie opened the show, and they’ve impressed me for a bit now and their first EP Validated is a true treasure of resistance. This garage rock duo is built around the powerful partnership of guitarist/vocalist Johanna and bassist/vocalist Ashlorp, and the sound rages with an anti-capitalist and contra-right roar against the powers that be. It’s a timely sound of dissidence that reminds me of contemporary bands like Priests and Downtown Boys, and it is all played with a slickness to ease the sickness. I can’t wait to hear and see more from these social warriors.
Pom Pom Squad was next and proved once again why they are one of my favorite Brooklyn outfits to craze out to. They are always ready to take out the ignorant and hateful anti-LGBT goons, but their songs often take the path to the inward struggles of identity and security but can also even turn out some gorgeously tortured love songs along the way. Frontwoman and guitarist Mia Berrin has that true rock star grit as she often comes out ironically dressed in cheeky cheerleader garb, but she chants a more individualistic tune than you’d expect and achieves a beautiful euphoria on stage. Their new track “Heavy Heavy” is a brilliant study of existential headaches of being who you are and an intoxicating anthem of coming of age. This band is definitely due for a breakout, and I can’t imagine a band more worthy of it.
The New Zealand band Miss June was the next band up, and was the only band of the night I haven’t seen multiple times, and for good reason, as this was their first pass though NYC. They have built up a sizable following in such a short time too. Forntwoman Annabel Liddell fiercely commands the stage as she whips about the grounds like a hurricane marking its impeding destruction. She is already a bit of an Instagram star, but she has a real talent for whipping up a crowd face to face. They also have a new single, this one being the pro-choice fight anthem “Best Girl,” and this song is empowering badassery unchained. This is definitely a band to catch whenever you have the blessed chance to experience their stormy performances.
The rowdy power trio THICK came in last with a show of smooth force, and they were a blast to experience as always. This triad of trouble is comprised of Nikki Sisti on guitar and vocals, Kate Black on bass, and Shari Page on drums. To watch them bounce about the stage, you’d think they are demonically possessed, even though many of their songs are actually quite poignant and personal, but they always manage to pump up a crowd. This trinity just released their third EP Would You Rather?, which is their first release since signing to Epitaph Records, and it is a super fun thriller. They continue to have the superhuman energy on stage and they have a superhuman ability to whip up a mosh pit at just about every show I’ve seen them play. This is a band you should always try to catch, even if you have to wait till the early morn to rock out to them like I did this night.
Article: Dean Keim