Take a trip down musical memory lane and look back at the progression of punk rock since the early 80s. Somewhere between the pure punk heritage of The Clash, The Ramones and The Misfits, the knee-yourself-in-the-face-from-skanking-too-hard power fun of NOFX and Pennywise, the boy band-esque, new age hardcore flair of bands like My Chemical Romance, and current radio-edit pop punk superstars like Green Day or Paramore, a very real sound broadcasts the angst that’s driven all these genres for more than 30 years with a classically fresh attitude. That sound is Potty Mouth.
The brainchild of bassist Ally Einbender, Potty Mouth was born in mid-2011 at the women-only Smith College of Northampton, Mass. from a desire to write and influence the music she played. Testing her chops in two bands prior to Potty Mouth, Einbender found her fit with the addition of Victoria Mandanas on the drums, Phoebe Harris on lead guitar and Abby Weems on rhythm guitar and vocals. Together, they bring the melancholy of Millencolin with grandfather roots in old-skool Bad Religion, somehow rolling with easy-listening vibes of the Beach Boys.
Weems’ voice finds the perfect blend between monotone distress and animated commentary to express the bain of life’s most mundane, while playing an even balance with the hard guitar lines and short drum riffs. Their message speaks volumes to the origins of punk rock, the days when youth struggle through decisions, relationships, regret, the future, and growing up, figuring out how to be real with yourself and others.
Hell Bent, their newest EP released in September 2013, is an exploration of their prowess as a female punk band while diving deeper into the classic sounds that shaped the scene of glamorless drama. “The Gap,” Hell Bent’s lead track, is a lament about the promises of society, broken and re-promised to a generation that just doesn’t care anymore.
Although the use of minor keys often bring a slightly heavier vibe than more mainstream pop punk, Potty Mouth manages to keep their youthful essence in a collection of songs that took me back to my punk-discovery days playing Tony Hawk’s Pro Skater.
Bring your board, put on your favorite “Sk8 0r D13” shirt, and catch one of the finest (only?) up-and-coming punk bands you’ll see roll through the Queen City. It’ll be just like 1996.
MOTR Pub, Wednesday, May 14th with Fleabite. Show is at 10p It's FREE.