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.
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.