MUSIC REVIEW | 20-minute perfect set with Perfect Pussy at the 7th Street Entry

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Usually I understand that some people don’t like punk music or noise – but then sometimes I see a band, such as Perfect Pussy, that makes me wonder just what’s wrong with some people. Perfect Pussy played to a pretty full house at 7th Street Entry on Sunday, March 30. They are a noise-punk band out of Syracuse NY. Band members include lead singer Meredith Graves, Ray McAndrew on guitar, Garrett Koloski on drums, Greg Ambler on bass and Shaun Sutkus keyboard – well kinda keyboard.

Live the band isn’t as noise oriented as they sound recorded—at least they weren’t until the last song. Live, they’re pretty hard core punk. There’s a lot of passion, a lot of sound and a fast beat. On sound check Graves instructed the sound man, “As loud as you can make it and shitty as you can make it sound.” A promising start. There was a lot of feedback and reverb, and it fit right in. Mostly the songs included screaming, an undercurrent of noise and a driving drum.

I don’t know the music well enough to tell you what songs they played and I certainly couldn’t work out the words—but there’s something mesmerizing about them. Graves has a presence on stage that engaging; she appears to be in a trance at times. And she can shout. McAndrew and Amber look and sound the part of a hardcore band. The drums keep up – and the keyboard plays a starring role in the grand finale. The last sounds form the stage were from the keyboard and were noise from a very electronic looking keyboard. The noise was static hum like someone tuning an AM radio, with a hint of disco music heard as stations tuned in tuned out just as quickly.

When I say the set was 20 minutes, I’m exaggerating. It was really 16 minutes. No encore. Now maybe I left too soon and missed the greatest encore ever—but they seemed pretty done to me. I overheard someone say, “Some bands you want to hear form 45 minutes. But I’ll take 20 minutes of a perfect set any day.” What’s even better? The band started on time—to the minute. 

Playing with Perfect Pussy were Miami Dolphins and Condominium. I caught the last few songs from Condominium. They reminded me of old school hardcore punk bands I saw at 7th Street in the 1980s. The trio started with fast drum rolls and the guitar and bass joined in. Lots of loud singing. I’d see them again in a heartbeat too. It was the perfect end to the first spring-feeling day of the season!


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