Girlpool at Bottom Lounge

By Francesca Rosen

Oct 30, 2018

As the first band began to play, Palberta, they immediately set the tone for the night.  Their music and attitude were a perfect match for the intimate setting that is Bottom Lounge.  While their performance had an unrehearsed and “practicing in the garage vibe”, their jokes with the audience and quick eerily harmonious punk songs was the perfect soundtrack as the audience filed in.

After Palberta’s thirty minute set, Porches was next to play.  It was clear right away that Porches was a much rehearsed band however they did not lack the levity and intimacy that Palberta had started.  The band knew how to use the microphone effects to their advantage and while it may have been overdone at times giving their songs a definitively ‘80’s sound, the overall effect was impressive.  As Porches began to play the crowd filled out and the crowd showed their love and respect for the band as they sang along to many of their slower songs that held the most meaning to the band and their fans.  The band’s set especially managed to show the versatility of their sound as they seamlessly transitioned from ballads to dancey electronic music reminiscent at times of Daft Punk. Everything in their performance was perfectly planned from the lighting to their set list that it showed the stark difference between their performance and Palberta’s making it clear why Porches has been invited to perform at Pitchfork but also made their performance feel formulaic at times.

Girlpool was last to perform and while their set was well prepared, they still maintained a more laid back attitude.  They started their set with the two lead singers singing a capella and then eventually bringing the rest of the band in for the loud and melodic chorus.  Many of their songs followed this similar structure which highlighted the bands’ strong voices as well as their instrumentality. While the majority of their set was from their newest album, the audience became most enthusiastic when Girlpool played from their most famous album  “Before the World was Big”. The concert really hit its stride however when all of the band members left except for the two lead singers and they sang mainly without instruments. These songs were mainly the bands’ older music and it was sung with more meaning and passion than the rest of the songs.  As the band left, the crowd pleaded with them to come back and despite it being a Tuesday and well after the band was supposed to finish playing, they all came back for one last song that was one of their older and more well known songs much to the audiences’ pleasure.