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Wednesday, May 13, 2009
Show Review Crush: Von Iva, Sick of Sarah, and Aloud at T.T. The Bear's Place 5/12/09

It sort of makes me swell with good feelings when I see girls on stage. I just about burst with a girl crush for all females with a guitar hanging from their bodies or slamming a snare with a pair of drum sticks.

Last night was no exception.

Girls dominated the bands at T.T. The Bear's Place last night with local openers Aloud, Minneapolis-based Sick of Sarah, and Von Iva from San Fransisco. I had two of my show-going buddies along side me, Joe and Lindsay, and after hitting up The Field for a drink, we made our way to the venue where we promptly bumped into BBC's very own Mike and Sophia.
A sign of a good evening to come? I like to think the answer is Yes.

Pound-your-foot pop rock Aloud kicked off the show with Jen de la Osa and Henry Beguiristain trading powerhouse vocals as the hometown heroes. I have to admit that all attention seemed drawn to de la Osa as she confidently (and yet without ego) formed her pout into an O and wailed like Fiona Apple into the microphone. And she played guitar and piano. Girl crush? You betchya.

Beguiristan was also found on guitar and keys. Of him, Lindsay commented that he, "look[ed] like Jared Leto from My So Called Life. If this were the '90s, I'd want to jump his bones." His voice, coupled with de la Osa's, proved for a near flawless harmony. They played together with obvious ease, with the understanding of two musicians who have known one another a very long time. Aloud's songs are sometimes rock and roll, sometimes bluesy and soulful, and other times very nearly new wave. The credit comes from the way in which they comfortably play each song.
Following Aloud was Sick of Sarah, a band I've been waiting to see for nearly eight months after first hearing of them from the owner of a bar back in Indianapolis whose sister happened to be SOS's guitar player Jessie Farmer. They'd passed through Indy a time or two or more though I'd already moved to glorious Boston. When I heard they'd be here, I immediately wrote down the date in my day planner. In red ink. With lots of stars and hearts. Girl crush.

Sick of Sarah are five good looking rocker chicks (side note: how the heck did they look so great when they're on tour??) that are infectiously talented, complete with headbanging. Vocalist Abisha Uhi easily works the stage and has that poppy, radio-ready voice - it's the kind that you don't mind setting on repeat so you can sing along to every song the next time you see them live.
But bad form to T.T. The Bear's for giving an excellent band entirely too much feedback from the monitors; if it had been a lesser band, it would've detracted and distracted. But, to Sick of Sarah's credit, they seemed to play harder, better, faster to spite the occasional screeching monitor.

"This is like the Wake Up music I need in the morning on the T," Lindsay said during their set. "It's a little F**k You, but Good."

And of Farmer's guitar playing, Joe firmly declared that, "She is an American bad ass. The new American bad ass." If SOS put on a tour with Brooklyn's Boyskout, Joe commented, it would near perfection.

And the crowd was really beginning to move and shake for SOS - a great warm up for Von Iva.
Von Iva closed out the night with a fury. Lindsay rushed to the front to join the gyrating crowd as I watched singer Jillian Iva strut across the stage in short shorts and heels. Comprised of a drummer, a keyboard, and straight vox, a listener would be hell bent to not dance to Von Iva's techno rock style that reminded Joe of Peaches.

Do I need to say it? Girl crush.

Jillian Iva found herself comfortable in the venue, demanding shots for drummer Kelly Harris' birthday, slapping high fives with members of the crowd, resting a spiked heel on the shoulders of men in the audience, crying out in between songs things like, "I said spread the message, not your legs, bitch."

These ladies were carnal, hot, were the catalyst for a dance party as soon as they started to play. While the assumption might be that the bare basics as far as instruments go would cause the music to be bare and basic, too, Becky Kupersmith's keys and Harris' driving dance beats could influence the limpest of limbs to flare and fire and dance.

It was an evening full of talented chicks. I can only hope for a time in the scene in which this isn't a novel event, but rather the norm.