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Girl in a Coma
Date/Time: Thu., February 21, 8:00pm
The Knitting Factory
7021 Hollywood Blvd. L.A. CA 90028 (323) 463-0204

Deep in the Blackheart of Texas
By Falling James
Joan Jett knows a thing or two about rock & roll, and her latest protegees, Girl in a Coma, on her Blackheart label are one of the best and most interesting bands to come out of Texas in a long time. Although they're named after a Smiths song, Girl in a Coma are no mere tribute or revival act. Singer-guitarist Nina Diaz is a thoughtful lyricist who has a mighty voice that's in a league with Siouxsie Sioux and the HorrorPops' Patricia Day. And while many of the songs on their 2007 CD, Both Before I'm Gone, have a punk rock base, the group also have the ambition and reach to create epic ballads like "Road to Home," which has a fuller, deeper sound than you might expect from a trio. Diaz is properly enigmatic on "Sybil Vane Was Ill," as her guitar style moves from jangly and jumpy to punky and searing. Phanie D. keeps up a fierce racket on drums, supported by Jenn Alva's restlessly wandering bass. GIAC are actually stranger and more expansive than their influences and can't be neatly pigeonholed or relegated to some convenient genre basement. Don't miss 'em. Also at Alex's Bar, Fri., Feb. 22.