I finally got to the bottom of why I’ve been feeling so crappy lately– a double ear infection. Yup. You read that right. Most people would hunker down, take the meds, and let it pass but I’m not like most people. It’s not that I don’t believe in doctors or what they have to say but it’s more that concerts don’t stop and neither do I so, after my quick appointment, I made my way downtown for, you guessed it, a show I knew nothing about.
Hatchie took the stage promptly at 8 PM. Although Hatchie came in the form of a band on Tuesday night, it’s actually a one-woman act fronted by Harietta Pilbeam from Australia. Without any introduction, Hatchie leaped into her forty-minute set with a sense of innocence and sweetness that seemed to hide hints of darkness scattered throughout her set. Her unique brand of bubblegum lo-fi pop came with elements of new wave, singer-songwriter, and indie rock– hell, it was all over the place and I was along for the ride regardless of where it took me. As mentioned, there was something sweet and innocent about Harriette and her overall presence. She honestly came off as very “girl next door” but with an edge. There’s a darkness to Hatchie’s music that, although hidden the majority of the time, comes through loud and clear during certain words and phrases. That depth separates Hatchie from many of the other acts in the scene in a gorgeous way and had me sold throughout her set wishing it would never end.
Alex G, (Sandy) Alex G, Alexander Giannascoli– regardless of what you know him as, chances are you know one of his names and his music. A DIY self-starter, Alex G has been making waves for years now, and being able to see him headline at the legendary First Avenue was empowering to say the least. Alex actually played that giant festival I went to in Las Vegas just over a week ago but, sadly, I was unable to catch his set due to me being so lost in a cloud of nostalgia throughout the day so Tuesday night was kind of my redemption moment. It was my chance to experience this man who has been making waves and working his butt off for years and I was not going to miss the opportunity.
The crowd at First Avenue on Tuesday was mighty. I don’t have confirmation that the night sold out but it had to have been damn close and, out of everyone there, I felt like one of the oldest. Alex G has a way with the youth and after the first song of his set which must have lasted over twenty songs, it made sense. Alex’s sound is accessible and chill. At face value, it’s a lo-fi pop-laden indie-rock but, when you start peeling back the layers, it’s so much more than that. With a clear Elliott Smith influence in the vocals, I found his overall song composition to span eras and genres I never thought would go together. Like Hatchie’s set, it was all over the place and I was just along for the ride while keeping a smile on my face.
Much like his music, Alex G came off as super accessible to the crowd in this understated way. He didn’t have much smoke and mirrors when it came to his show and really only relied on some fancy pretty lights to enhance his performance. I loved the way that this lack of production really gave Alex and his band members a chance to let their true talent shine. I’m all for people who work their butts off in the industry and do the grind that I find myself doing every single day. The day that I get to see those people perform on one of the most well-known stages in the states is always a highlight and was truly just the cherry on top.
I wish I had more to say about the show as I know this review has been short but I also don’t want to start repeating myself. Honestly, like Alex G’s set, the entire night was understated but it was absolutely perfect and was well worth ignoring my doctor’s advice to just hunker down at home.
Venue: First Avenue
Smell-O-Meter: Nothing Notable
Average Age of the Crowd: 19
Crowd Surfers- None
Stage Divers- 0
Mosh-ability- 3 out of 10
Sausage-Fest Meter- 6 out of 10
Amount of Beer Spilled On Me While Walking Around- $0
Broken Bones- None
Spotted Flying Through The Air- Nothing
Randomly Shirtless Men – 0
Passed Out Kids- 0
Idiots Taken Out By Security – 0
How Many Times I’ve Seen These Bands Before (or at least how many times I can remember)-
Hatchie – 0
Alex G – 1
Celebrity Sightings – None
Overall Score- 7 out of 10
Show on Deck — The Brevet / Cryote / Flip Rushmore
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