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Girl In a Coma

By Falling James

Girl in a Coma are named after a Smiths song and have opened for Morrissey, and they’re signed to Joan Jett’s estimable Blackheart Records, but the San Antonio trio’s music doesn’t really sound like either of their champions. Singer-guitarist Nina Diaz’s songs share some of the romantic frustration of Morrissey’s worldview, but her lyrics are more direct and less self-conscious. Girl in a Coma can rock it up with a churning punk rock attack, but there’s more of a restless exploration and a wider variety of melodic styles on their latest CD, Trio B.C., than in Jett’s primal rock declamations. The truth is, GIAC sound like no one but themselves. They’re distinguished by Diaz’s powerful yet soothingly tuneful vocals, but her soaring lamentations are pushed farther into the heavens by her sister Phanie Diaz’s stomping drums and Jenn Alva’s exhilarating bass lines. Moods swing from the dreamy girl-group languor of “Vino” and the cottony pop perfection of “Ven Cerca” to the heated neo-rockabilly rush of “Slaughter Lane” and the hard-charging “Baby Boy.” With the retro noir-pop of Miss Derringer. Also at the Knitting Factory, Sat.