Cherry Glazerr fans who attended New York City’s Panorama musicfestival were let down when the floor of the indoor Parlor stage broke, forcing them and any acts after 5 p.m. to cancel their sets. Though the band must’ve been equally as disappointed as their fans, they seemed unfazed by the drama when they took the stage of Rough Trade NYC in Brooklyn later that evening.
Beginning their set after midnight, the Los Angeles four-piece approached it as any tired, touring band would. Synth player Sasami Ashworth leisurely shuffled around her equipment, modestly apologizing to audience members who she had to shimmy out of her way. Lead singer Clementine Creevy casually slung her plain black stratocaster around her neck, comfortable in a pair of jean shorts and tee. Bassist Devin O’Brien found his nook next to a living room lamp that created a dim glow over him the whole set, while drummer Taber Allen vacantly warmed up his kit as the band got comfortable.
They took this easy-going approach following up a very chaotic Mannequin Pussy performance, whose fellow female lead singer closed the set scream-singing, sweaty and slithering on the stage wrapped in the tangle of her microphone cable.
Mannequin Pussy suggested an energetic set from the headlining Cherry Glazerr, but they began easy before gaining traction mid-set.
They eased into their set without much word to the audience, and were much more focused on sound versus entertaining. Even when Creevy jumped from one side of the stage to the other, head-banging with her short bangs bouncing over her eyes, she didn’t miss a single note.
The band was most energetic for many of the singles from their most recent album, ‘Apocalipstick.’ They made sure to play tracks such as ‘Told You I’d Be With the Guys,’ or ‘Nurse Ratched,’ but Creevy took the time to tell the crowd that they just fucking love playing music.
This was obvious, especially when they performed the closing, title track, ‘Apocalipstick,’ when the four-some went into a mesmerizing jam session, dissolving into their instruments as if the audience vanished. Other than an attempt at a miniature mosh pit during the most hype ‘Sip O’ Poison,’ the performance suggested presentation rather than participation.
Creevy’s simplistic approach seemed like a revolt against the hype created around her, and as a woman in music. Male Internet trolls have shared their disappointment in her abandoning her blonde hair and “pretty” persona. Publications like Teen Vogue feature Creevy decked out in make up with bleached hair versus this upfront, carefree performer who just shredded her Fender stratocaster all night without a thought to how she looked. There’s was no mistake she stood as a symbol, and definitely a glimmer of hope for many of the women in the audience, who with shaved heads but unshaven armpits flock to a Cherry Glazerr set as a safe haven from the gender expectations both in the realm of music, and society, for that matter. Creevy, who identifies as a feminist, and enjoys delving into gender studies, most likely takes pride in creating this community with her grungy girl rock.
When watching Cherry Glazerr there’s no question that the focus is on the music, which is all we could ask for, but there’s also this emphasis on the playfulness of being young, in a band, and living out your dreams.
Creevy made sure to make plenty of silly faces on top of wiggling around on stage, asking not to be taken seriously. One girl from the crowd complained about Creevy ‘threatening the integrity of the music’ with her child-like nature, but when you’re singing a song about resisting to share a grilled cheese sandwich, wouldn’t you think this band just wants to have a good time?
Their sometimes goofy, yet always composed, whistle-clean playing suggests musicians deep into their careers, but Creevy is but 20 years old, just two years out of high school. She’s the only guitarist in Cherry Glazerr, yet seamlessly jumps from rhythm to lead, made possible with the helping keys from Ashworth that are tied together perfectly by heavy basslines and the busy, dense drums of Cherry Glazerr.
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