Girls are like a throwback to a time that never existed. Each member seems to exist autonomously in a unique, fictional part of now. Last night in Whelan’s they each seemed to be having fun in their own way (besides, perhaps, the sullen, business-like bass player). Frontman Christopher Owens revelled in the occasion like a teenager performing at his school’s talent show while the moustache-sporting drummer enjoyed endless private jokes throughout the set. Guitarist Ryan Lynch looked and sounded like an ode to the early days of Pearl Jam and was more often than not hidden behind a sheet of long, straggley hair while adding squalling guitars to some of the evening’s high points. The sound where we were (near the front-left) was mostly bang-on, though others have differing reports from around the room. The huge, deafening noise after “Hellhole Ratrace” certainly did damage to a lot of ears in our vicinity.
If you were at the gig, you’ll be aware of the subplot of the self-absorbed imbecile in the middle who thought the gig was a backdrop for a photoshoot with him and his equally idiotic friends. The contrived, attention-seeking, preening of the whole lot of them was a constant distraction as they hurled themselves on top of each other and did their very best impressions of what they think someone who is ‘lost in the music’ is supposed to look like. These are the kind of kids who treat life as an audition for a teen-drama and for whom a gig is just an opportunity to tug at their perfectly disrupted fringes in feigned anguish brought on by the music they’re ignoring in favour of pouting at a camera. The desperate attempts to steal some of the spotlight from the band reached a low-point when the head idiot got up on his friend’s shoulders and began attempting to tear his shirt apart. The band’s reactions varied from disinterested to downright pissed off as they watched the young fool throw the scraps he managed to rip off onto the stage.
Owens did thank the crowd for their reception and mentioned how in the UK they weren’t sure if the crowds wanted an encore because they were all just wanking. Odd stories aside, the Dublin crowd loved them and the band responded pretty well. The girl on the far side who jumped up onstage for a quick dance during “Lust For Life” even got a high-five from Owens for her efforts afterwards. Some more photos are below and on Flickr, while the State review by Alan Reilly with my pics is here.