On Tuesday April 3rd, the Trocadero Theatre in Philadelphia Pennsylvania played host to a collection of indie rock royalty known as Wild Flag. Featuring Carrie Brownstein and Janet Weiss (both formerly of Sleater-Kinney), Mary Timony (from Helium) and Rebecca Cole (formerly from The Minders), they tore through their entire self-titled debut album (which was released in late 2011 and has been given rave reviews) and a few covers ending the show with ‘Do You Wanna Dance?’ which many people know for the Ramones’ take on the song.

Considering that the band hasn’t been together all that long, these veteran musicians have quickly developed a strong chemistry and defined roles on stage. Charisma-wise, Brownstein takes the cake, owning the most dominant voice in the band and offering high-kicks aplenty during the performance. Timony owns a breathy, less assertive voice but her guitar playing is where she roars. Weiss has always had a reputation for being a hard-hitting drummer with a firm handle on complex rhythms. Seeing her work live only confirms this and makes you feel a little sorry for her drum heads. Cole deftly plays two keyboards at once, essentially taking the place of a bass player while also offering up the natural benefits of a keyboard and helping with background vocals (as all members do). Talk about triple duty!

Opening act Blood Feathers came across like an odd assortment of six fellows who combined to be an average bar band.

Indie rock trio Hospitality fared significantly better, evoking a bit more of a response from the crowd and proving that less can be more.

Even though Wild Flag‘s album attempted to capture the energy of their live performance, there is no substitute for actually seeing them in person. They may not fully embrace the super-group tag that has been thrown their way, but it would be very accurate to call them a group that is super.

“A few hours before the show, I was lucky enough to sit down and conduct an interview with Janet and Rebecca backstage at the venue. My goal was to cover some territory that hasn’t been touched yet because through my research, it seemed as though the ladies were asked the same things over and over again. If you want basic knowledge about the band and generalized inquiries, you had best look elsewhere. If you would like something a bit outside of the box, you can listen to it here.” – J.J. Ellis

[You can download the audio Here]

Photo by Steve Topp

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When J.J. Ellis isn’t writing as the Allentown DVD Examiner, his Decent Exposure Radio can be heard on the air every Friday night from 10:30 to midnight (EST) on WXLV 90.3 FM or wxlvradio.com!

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