There have been two points in my life where I thought guitar theatrics were cool.
The first was in elementary school. My dad was showing me Van Halen’s video for “Jump“, which is primarily a ridiculous duel between David Lee Roth’s high kicks and Eddie Van Halen’s guitar wizardry. The two decades since have been fine for me, I guess, but I didn’t realize how much I missed unabashedly hooky rock anthems with a sugar-high stage presence until Charly Bliss came through Brighton Music Hall last week with Operators.
Pooling mostly from their phenomenal upcoming full-length, Guppy, the Brooklyn four piece flailed, pogoed, tapped on each other’s instruments, and fell into each other mid-solo to an intimate crowd. “Raise your hand if you love your therapist,” singer/guitarist Eva Hendricks asked cheerily in one of the set’s moments of self-reflection before (literally) jumping into fuzz-poppy highlight “Ruby.” The newer cuts similarly don’t mince words on abusive relationships (“Black Hole”), career fears (“DQ”), and cherishing happiness in relationships (a new song called “Heaven”), packing in weighty themes with an aerobic stage presence. No offense, but I think David Lee Roth will have to do a hell of a lot more high kicks to compete with Charly Bliss’ modernized, emotional spin on guitar maximalism.
Check out our photo slideshow below and catch Charly Bliss in Boston again at ONCE Ballroom on June 17th.