Abject= Either a person or situation, wretched, miserable, hopeless, contemptible lamentable,
As numbers tick to count fateful votes and Trump’s wilted excuse of hair sits on top of a smug smile, I sit and listen to an all-female punk band from the UK called the Abjects. Before they come on the stage, I station myself at the bar under charming crepuscular lights and a lingering scent mixed with last night’s one too many Old Styles.
I listen to the subdued rumbling of conversation that spanned from recent television shows to what the bar tender’s favorite live show of all time at the Empty Bottle was. Tonight is the Abject’s first show at the Empty Bottle in Chicago.
As I span patrons donning flannels and unseasonal hats my thoughts begin drifting in the direction of my profound respect for rebels, dreamers, and artists alike on their own quest for passion.
Then my mind wandered to the question, what is the appeal of an all-girl punk band? Of course the easy answer is sex appeal, but there is more to it than that, an energy, which could be in explained in numbers. Three is a magical number. Threes are the sun, moon,and stars, threes are Nirvana, Motorhead, Sleater Kinney. And tonight are three women who glide onto stage fumbling around in their larger than normal purses before setting up stage for sound check.
There is a soft and quiet confidence about the Abjects who are almost primitive in nature and true to what we envision as the punk female archetype. Yuki is draped in a blood red bass and lead singer and guitar Noemi’s in crust style black distressed tights. The Abjects thrashed it to a solid receptive crowd. Their sound made body and heads move with grinding throbbing beats provided by Alice on drums, matched with harmonized Kim Gordonesque vocals.
The beat was driven and there were moments of intensifying buildup that kept the audience captivated erupting in distortion that had an underlying surfer twang to it. I noticed a few men next to me snickering about a technical snafu after a guitar string broke on stage.
My thoughts were this, there is nothing funny about serious drum strokes that provide a basis for deep visceral bass, and staunch yet melodic and melting guitar riffs delivered in a medium of the holy trinity of talented female angst goddesses.
Rock on Abjects and come back to Chicago.