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Wednesday, April 17, 2013

Hunters steal show during Bleached's Atlanta return

Hunters lead singer Isabel Almeida put on a jaw dropping performance.
  • Bobby Moore
  • Hunters lead singer Isabel Almeida put on a jaw-dropping performance.

Bleached brought its credible yet pop-accessible sound to the Earl on April 16, but tourmates Hunters stole the show with a tight, borderline theatrical performance.

Carnivores opened, as they deservedly are the go-to local band for this type of show, especially when the Coathangers are on the road. Since some of the Carnivores' best songs mix surf rock with effects-pedal pop, their dance-worthy set would have set the stage well for Bleached, had something from completely out of left field not been wedged in between the opener and the headliner.

It wouldn't be absurd to say that Hunters' set was like seeing Patti Smith front Hole. Tall, slender, and pink-haired, lead singer Isabel Almeida began her band's set with her arms raised to the sky. If I didn't know any better, I'd assume she was channeling whatever gave her the will and energy to be a complete ball of energy for the entire set, as she was constantly on the floor, in the air, or among the audience for a solid half-hour. Musically, the Brooklyn band's guitarist, Derek Watson, led an assault that was a noisy nod to the '90s without being overly derivative.

Closing out the night was Bleached. In Mika Miko, Jennifer Clavin was a charismatic performer much like Almeida, leaping around the stage and screaming into a telephone-turned-microphone. Now with a guitar in hand, and her sister Jessie by her side, punk performance has taken a back seat to more serious songwriting aspirations. The Clavin sisters' growing canon of songs was as effective live as they are on the Ride Your Heart LP and three earlier 7-inches. What's most exciting for Bleached fans, though, is knowing that the girls are just now cutting their teeth as songwriters. If they are all-in with this band, as most interviews project, future songs might be even catchier.

Carnivores guitarist Ross Politi
  • Bobby Moore
  • Carnivores guitarist Ross Politi makes the transition from drums.

Even when she was kneeling, Almeida was a ball of unrestrained energy.
  • Bobby Moore
  • Even when she was kneeling, Almeida was a ball of unrestrained energy.

Former Mika Miko bassist Jessie Clavin now plays guitar and writes songs with her sister, Jennifer.
  • Bobby Moore
  • Former Mika Miko bassist Jessie Clavin now plays guitar and writes songs with her sister, Jennifer.

Bleached lead singer Jennifer Clavin is just now cutting her teeth as a songwriter
  • Bobby Moore
  • Bleached lead singer Jennifer Clavin is just now cutting her teeth as a songwriter.

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