Deap Vally At Amoeba, Tuesday May 13th 2014
These Deap Vally girls took me by surprise, their set at Amoeba was totally Jack White’s mind blowing! And should I add that they were much cuter than Pitchfork’s favorite taxidermist? On Tuesday night, the female duo was doing an in-store performance to celebrate the release of their album ‘Sistrionix’, and the store was packed when Lindsey Troy on guitar and Julie Edwards on drums took the stage to play an electrifying and totally badass set.
These girls loved distortion while showing some real mean girl action, Lindsey looked like a cute Geena Davis, was dressed like a glam Bowie, but played some distorted Jack White-like guitar while managing to produce some Black Sabbath’s riffs, if anything of this makes sense. And Julie Edwards, she was the Susan Sarandon of their Thelma and Louise duo, yeah these girls meant trouble and they did trash the place with great style and a rare ferocity. Wow, in a few minutes, they let us know they knew about the demons-of-rock-n-roll.
I have never seen the White Stripes at the beginning of their career, but it is unavoidable to make a parallel with the famous guitar-drums duo and their blues-rock sound, however these two women seemed to have stripped it down to the essential, raw power? Certainly! I just read that they played with Iggy Pop in London – but also with Thurston Moore and Dinosaur Jr. in Japan for their debut performance. Amazingly, the duo has already an impressive résumé, as they have toured with the Vaccines, have opened for Muse and are soon going on tour with Bands of Skulls. Plus, according to their bio, when they first played live in 2011, ‘Marilyn Manson pushed his way to the front row and heckled them as they took to the stage. After the show the first thing he said to them was, Can I be your groupie?’. I am speechless.
Sure they can’t pretend to have re-invented the genre, but I had so much fun watching them! Plus, they were girls, girls getting all that power with only a guitar and a drum set, they seem to be a great example of people making music because they just want to rock. Although I could not really understand them during their set, their lyrics are also a sort of feminist manifesto, so even more power to them! Toward the end of their set, they were joined on stage for two songs by French musician-actress Soko, and the guitar rage went on and on, taking some fantastic proportions, with some manic delivery in the vocals, some shrieks and snarls, they were rule rocking. Did they go to the Joan Jett’s school?
In these times when most agree that the Black Keys have lost any real blues-demon spirit and have turned into a mellow child’s fever or some music for merry-go-around, Deap Vally were roaring and igniting the place with monster riffs and a lot of sexiness, ha, did I mention these tiny sparkling shorts, this wild hair and all the rest? ‘Sex is a big part of the spirit of rock ‘n’ roll. Look at all the great rockers, the power they had over the crowd. Sexuality is power, and we don’t want to be a neutered band; we like embracing our sexuality. It’s a part of our music, and being women is a big part of it, our lyrics are very much from our experience. We’re very much women’, said Troy in an interview,… I totally got that, they had a song called ‘Gonna Make My Own Money’, and it was that simple, grrrl riot, unapologetic girl power, empowering female anthems. And these girls have tons of ambition, ‘We believe in bringing truly live music back,’ said Troy in the same interview, ‘And we believe in the rock ‘n’ roll revolution, bringing guitar-based rock ‘n’ roll back to the mainstream. We love Led Zeppelin —they’re our heroes. Because that’s a band that played stadiums, didn’t have a safety net of a pre-recorded back-up tape, they didn’t record to a click, and they were really, really sexy and really commanding. And why can’t that happen again?’ It’s happening, Deap Vally was everything they said and a lot of fun.