Girlpool at Paradise Rock Club
- By Timothy Jordan -
On February 9th, folk punk band, Girlpool sold out Boston’s Paradise Rock Club. Lead singer, Cleo Tucker lamented to the crowd that they woke up that morning with their voice gone, but their scream-sing harmonies with bassist, Harmony Trinidad sounded just like their records. The group played songs from varying points in their career, ranging from their first album, Before the World Was Big to their most recent single, “Picture Song,” which was just released this month.
Tucker teased the crowd with opening licks of hits like of “Blister in the Sun” and “Come as You Are” but denied the audiences’ encouraging cheers and instead continued with the shoe-gazer jams that Girlpool is so known for. Heavily strummed minor-key clean guitar drove most Girlpool songs performed on Friday. Some were backed by snare-and-crash drums and eighth-note build-ups, while others featured nothing more than sparse strumming and the girls’ harmonies. From their 2017 album, Power Plant, Tucker sang, “The nihilist tells you that nothing is true / I said I faked global warming to get close to you” before the song, “It Gets More Blue” erupted into distorted guitar strumming and explosive crash hits.
Tucker and Trinidad’s voices clashed stylistically,
dipping just under pitch in long, drawn out chorus notes. Their punk-anthem angst seemed to ring true to the bobbing heads of The Paradise. Audience members either looked down on the crowd from the ring balcony that lines the venue or hugged the stage in the pit, while others hung around one of the two bars in the venue or perused the merchandise table.
The band’s stripped-down sound transferred to their minimalist approach on-stage. Simple colored lights and a lack of visual aids kept eyes on their casual dress, and garage-band feel. Only four performers graced the stage, and they rocked a such a blithe on-stage collective persona that it was hard to imagine that they would be much different in the seats of their tour van.
Tucker and Trinidad shared anecdotes from their antics in the van between songs and discussed what they might play next with nonchalance. From their entrance to their exit, all four performers showed no signs of pretension or histrionics. Instead, their unplanned feel offered a haphazard appeal. Tucker’s voice prevailed to the end of their set, and they exited to enthusiastic whoops and cheers.
Girlpool will be heading West, and playing in California for the remainder of the month, before moving north to Portland and Seattle.