Concert Review: The Vivian Girls and Ponytail, May 4, 2009, at the Jackpot


The hardest part about seeing Vivian Girls live is trying to see through their ineffable charm. When the ladies take the stage and fill a 45-minute set with noisy, garage-rock-influenced indie-pop, it’s easy to fall in love with the way they’ve reinvented the girl group.

Despite pretty much adoring their eponymous 2008 debut, I’ve spent the six months since I first heard that record experiencing a whirlwind of reactions to Vivian Girls. At first I loved them for being reminiscent of the short-lived ’90s indie-pop outfit Black Tambourine then derided them for ripping them off. Seeing them live made me understand that both of these were true at the same time.

Though they exploded out of the gate last night at the Jackpot with “All the Time,” the opening jam that hooked everyone who put on Vivian Girls for the first time, the rest of the first half of the set was a drag.

Categories: Music