Even though I moved to this neighbourhood a year ago — almost exactly a year ago, actually — I hadn’t been back to The Opera House to see a gig. In fact, looking back through this here blog machine, I see that it’s been (again, almost exactly) sixteen years since I watched Spiritualized play there, and more than fifteen years since I watched my beloved Sleater-Kinney blow us all up there. Nothing since though, at least as best I can remember.

The reason I say all this: Thursday, after some dinner at La Carnita, we headed to the Opera House for a triple bill. We arrived in the middle of Bedouine‘s (website) set, which sounded lovely. I wish we’d seen a little more of her.

Next up was Hurray For The Riff Raff (website), a band I’ve listened to a fair bit in the past and whose last album I really liked. I would have gone to see them on their own; the fact that they were co-headlining with another excellent band made this ticket a steal. I loved their set — singer/guitarist/songwriter Alynda Lee Segarra has a voice that doesn’t seem real, and an incandescent stage presence. Some of their songs are fun; some are heavy as fuck (like “Kids Who Die” which Segarra wrote after reading the Langston Hughes poem), but all were captivating.

The headliner that night was Waxahatchee (bandcamp), whose last album I also loved. Their set was a little less incendiary than HFTRR’s, but as solid as I wanted: lots of songs from the last album, a few good cuts from Ivy Tripp, fun banter. It had me listening to their whole repertoire the next day.

Also: walking in our front door, like, three minutes after the show ended? Sweet.


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