Brekfest: Pinky Pinky, Liily, Plague Vendor at the Echo, Tuesday January 22nd 2019
I went back to Brekfest last night, for two reasons, first because the young band Liily was a great revelation last week, then because Plague Vendor was headlining… Last time I saw them, the Whittier band’s performance was so impressive that I had to experience their effortless chaos-making once more time.
I have already seen Pinky Pinky a few times, and the teenager girls always give an impeccable set with a remarkable mature delivery. Last night, they looked and sounded like the calm before the tempest to come. The trio acted like a well-behaved group with super melodic songs led by a ’60s vibe, soulful grooves, and Anastasia Sanchez’s powerhouse old-soul howls, filling the place with a special yearning. As the drummer, she was center-stage as usual, rolling her eyes to the ceiling, while following Eva Chambers’ bouncing bass and Isabelle Fields’ intricate electrifying guitar work. The trio has this big bold sound, in full bloom while surfing between bluesy guitars and girl group, and their inventive parts give to the music a timeless quality floating above their garage rock. There’s always something sweet and ferocious in their delivery, an original blend of vintage and unique take on the LA music scene wrapped around many catchy songs and maturity beyond their young age,… Plus, I noted a few ones I hadn’t heard before.
As soon as Liily’s guitars throbbed their alarming sound, the atmosphere shifted completely and the crowd got ready for another moshing party. Last week, I praised Liily’s hard-hitting, noise-making hard-rock, filled by loud and chaotic guitars and the bold scream of their frontman Dylan Nash. I even threw in a few bold comparisons, the Beastie Boys (for their intro song) and Rage Against the Machine here and there, but could I also add some Strokes and TV in the Radio influences? Why not? But I am only saying this because I am writing a review for people who have not yet been exposed to the euphoric frenzy of a Liily’s performance: it’s a beautiful adrenaline rush, as their almighty music relies on a series of rewarding anticipation of violent outbursts of rage, only matching their stage bouncing antics. Just like last Tuesday, they maintained this same super-high level of energy, except for a calmer almost-disco dancefloor, which barely slowed down the mad party.
It’s difficult to follow the furor of Liily, but Plague Vendor could follow anyone without any problem. I have seen the band a few times after discovering them at Punk Rock Bowling in Las Vegas, 2 years ago, but last night show was particularly memorable, as the possessed energy they rose and the unapologetic atmosphere they generated was so empowering that they must have left permanent marks on the Echo stage. The music was in full punk mode for the entire set, but it was revealing strong and catchy melodies, sung — or should I say shrieked — by the very charismatic Brandon Blaine. He and his mad scream are a scene to be seen, he is a natural beast scene, commanding the crowd like a godfather of punk, embracing decades of legends with his sexy hip moves. He could be compared to many, and he is certainly a hybrid of many famous icons (from Pop to Cave) but honestly, I haven’t seen this type of full-body dance steps anywhere else. The crowd could have followed him everywhere, pumping up fists and raising middle fingers, as the band was sowing terror and darkness with a fearless determination. With Blaine acting like the master of the band’s manic anthems and visceral garage punk, their set was a pulsating and vibrating experience, with a fun aura which was sending the crowd to some incredible restless trance. After the release of ‘Free To Eat’ in 2014 and ‘BLOODSWEAT’ in 2016, a new record is overdue, and the good news for fans is that Brandon told us a new album was on its way for summer. And if it sounds like their new head-banging bass-driven furious ‘Locomotive’, released a few months ago, be ready for an intoxicating treat.
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