Perfect Pussy. The Heartbeat of Glory and Damage.

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Perfect Pussy. The Heartbeat of Glory and Damage

Meredith Graves, stood stage right, is beating her chest with her microphone.

Ray McAndrew is crouched over his guitar in front of her, toying with the strings like a cat would a mouse. On the other side, Greg Ambler has collapsed into his bass and is throttling it into a dizzying roar that Shaun Sutkins is fighting to control through his keyboard. Garret Koloski sits behind the drum kit, surveying the flaming wreckage that Perfect Pussy have become.

And Meredith Graves is still beating herself in the chest.

It’s exciting to see. It’s captivating. Then it’s painful. And this grows the longer it goes on. It feels like forever. The physical action of hitting yourself in the chest with everything you have, hurts. Watching someone do that to themselves, hurts. Amidst the hype, the controversy and a year that’s seen Perfect Pussy go from garage vanity project to quotation marked saviors of music, there’s been a underlying whisper of shared pain. Tonight, that whisper becomes a scream, bursting from the belly of every individual present.

Then, without noticeable cue, Meredith picks up her microphone stand from the wings and places it centre stage. Curtain down. End scene. A similar move opened proceedings. In a set of untethered emotion and wild expression, these simple bookending actions seem cold. Calculated. It’s how five friends from Syracuse, New York go from that, to the guttural bonfire of Perfect Pussy and back again without getting lost in it’s fiery expanse.

It’s November. Perfect Pussy are in London as part of a helter skelter European tour that starts to concludes a rollercoaster, globe-dashing year. If they’re exhausted, they don’t show it.

Opening with ‘Bells’ from their debut, ‘Say Yes To Love’ Perfect Pussy don’t hit the ground running, they just hit the floor. From the first note, all hell breaks loose on stage. An uncontrollable wind. A white hot heat.

If you asked the crowd, a mixture of Cobain worshippers, pre-Emo revivalists and punks at various stages of life, to describe the show, you would receive an excited slew of adjectives before a pause and the hallowed ‘you need to see them, to get it’ denial.

Meredith comes closest to describing tonight’s show as she hits the microphone into her chest. The heartbeat of glory and damage.

‘Say Yes To Love’ is a vicious buzzsaw of an album. Soaked in pain, confusion and self, Perfect Pussy poured all the resentment of their hometown, the poison that followed their every step and their internalised screams of anger and disbelief into an injured wolf, backed against the wall. Snarling, unpredictable and dangerous. Lyrically, Meredith opened every one of her wounds and emptied herself into the words. Soaked in self-doubt and tears, sentences erupt from the feedback and hit you in the chest. That was eight months ago though. Tonight Perfect Pussy take those hyper-personal bedroom confessionals and hide them under a bed of wailing distortion, fluid dreams and joyful defiance. Tonight is a celebration. A victory march for survival.

Perfect Pussy have taken those songs, those words, those confessions, within themselves. Now, they are simply a part of who they are. A vessel for pain and the catharsis that follows for both band and audience. A tool of expression. Of unity.

Perfect Pussy have always seemed fleeting. Born by accident and carried on the tide of their own surprise, there’s a very real sense that the band will cease at any moment. That the excitement that drives them, doesn’t any more.

Tonight, The Perfect Pussy Show eluded the illusion of temporary. The band became transient. Every song, a moment. The blood and guts abrasion and caustic truth settle in the hearts of every person in the room.

Meredith Graves, stood stage right, is beating her chest with her microphone. And every blow is a victory.

Perfect Pussy can be found on Facebook.

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~ by justdip on 27/11/2014.

One Response to “Perfect Pussy. The Heartbeat of Glory and Damage.”

  1. […] You can read my interview with Meredith Graves at DIY and a review of their London show here. […]

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