Alone at the Show

Girlpool – Alone at the Show

Last night I was alone at the show, as I frequently am. I went to see Waxahatchee with Girlpool opening up. I had heard some buzz about Girlpool but other than the fact that the band is two teenagers, I didn’t really have any idea what to expect.

The venue was some sort of former movie theater/small town playhouse. It was extremely quiet, with everyone sitting in their seats and the stage, a wide expanse of black, was nearly empty. They joked, “Welcome to the talent show!” and seemed completely at ease. Just two young women with a guitar and a bass and eyes firmly shut while they belted it out into the darkness.

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The songs have a simplicity that’s not surprising given their ages and stripped down sound. As I sat listening to their lyrics and between song banter, with the audience and each other, they began to remind me of something. Ernie Pook’s Comeek.

That’s not another band but the Lynda Barry comic strip that used to run in the City Paper in Philadelphia and Washington, D.C. They have a similar combination of innocence and insight beyond their years. Humor and sadness. Awkward yet confident. They felt like the kind of band Marlys would love. Girlpool, girl power. Like the lyrics from one of their songs, “If you are a Jane put your fist up too.” Right on! Even Super Right On!

If you’re not familiar with Ernie Pook and Lynda Barry, man, you are missing out. And if you get the chance to see Girlpool, you should do it.

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