All photos: Katherine Gaines
Some would think that four albums and seven years in the industry would create a hubris in a band, but for Girl In A Coma this far from the truth. The three women from San Antonio Texas have managed to navigate the changing musical landscape without alienating fans or sacrificing their integrity as artists. They brought their trill attitude and straight up rock-and-roll to Red Palace for a eager DC audience.
Down for the ride was Deadbeat Darling, a paint-by-numbers rock quartet out of Brooklyn. There isn’t much negative to say about this band—as a group, they have a great sound, and their vocals are tight and not muffled by instrumentals. While they can certainly get loud, it’s their acoustic moments where they truly shine.
What makes these guys not as dynamic as they could be is their interaction as a band; everyone is in their own zone. This is all despite having an awesome drummer, being fronted by the hunk that is Joseph King, and a genre bending flavor of rock-and-roll. As a collective, on stage they don’t seem to even seem to recognize one another, but instead are so focused on their individual contribution to the arrangements. Overall, everything about Deadbeat Darling seemed neatly packaged, and served as an easy opener for the real show, Girl In A Coma.
The trio of female might that garnered a packed Red Palace (a definite sight to be seen) wasted no time getting our feet moving. Opening with their track “Control,” lead Nina Diaz sings with such undeniable conviction that proves the lyrics are more than fluff. To these ladies credit, they sound just as good as their studio albums, however, this isn’t to be confused with sounding similar or identical. On “Adjust” the emotion of the lyrics ooze like the sweat that drips from the ladies temples—live, we get the full effect of the words they sing.
As the tempo increases, and they ladies get more intense with their instrumentals, they fall into the hole of being too loud. Conceding the fact that they are rock-and-roll and thus are allowed to be aggressive, it still becomes hard to really enjoy the music if we can’t even hear the lyrics. These are some tough ladies with something to say, there’s no doubt about that. So why not allow us the opportunity to hear you instead of just drums and guitar riffs?
Looking around the unusually crowded venue, these ladies clearly have dedicated fans in the area. What struck me as odd was the subdued nature of the audience, despite such rowdy instrumentals—the interest and attention were there, but not the movement. Here I point to a weak crowd interaction from the band; there didn’t seem to be much interlude dialogue, and everyone loves to be recognized by their favorite band.
Overall as their set went, Girl In A Coma stuck to their most recent release, shining on tracks like “She Had A Plan” and “Knocking At Your Door.” It would have been great to have had more of a medley of past and present, but considering their extensive library of available tracks, no hurt feelings here. Exits & All The Rest plays as a decent touring album, each of the ladies’ individual talents are on display here. Speaking of, their fourth studio album is fully available on both iTunes and Spotify.
- Deadbeat Darling