As some of you know, after a long hiatus from the city of Louisville I have finally moved back from Cincinnati. Since relocating, I had yet to go to a show in the city, so Thursday night’s Brenda and Diarrhea Planet show at Zanzabar felt somewhat like a welcome home, and I couldn’t have asked for a better one.
Brenda is a band that I’ve listened to for a long time, but haven’t had the opportunity to see live for a multitude of reasons (I didn’t live here!). Their ability to write catchy pop-flavored songs with a punk attitude and grunge aesthetic makes them totally unique (listen to their Nightschool EP here if you haven’t already). Their live performance brings those qualities out in the open. Each member stands at the front of the stage in a line and each has their own character. Matt is the crazy fun dude that you want to drink with while Brenda reminds me of Courtney Love in her glory days. J.C. is almost robotic in both his facial expressions and his precise playing while Shelley is grooving and radiates the energy of the most powerful and badass female rock stars; e.g. Joan Jett. Together they are basically the Power Rangers of Germantown Rock ‘n’ Roll. If you haven’t witnessed this yourself, get woke.
Unlike Brenda, I had seen Diarrhea Planet before. Their powerful performance at Forecastle ’15 was more than enough to make me want to see them again. Like Brenda, they too are totally unique but in a much different way. They have 4 guitarist/singers who can break out and shred at any moment. They can sound like your dad’s favorite classic rock band in one moment and your favorite early 2000’s punk band in the next. Sometimes I even catch feels when they bring me back to when I would listen to Hot Water Music on my headphones in 8th grade. Most of all, you can tell Diarrhea Planet is having a good time doing it and that vibe translates to the crowd.
It was a great time, and it made me really happy to be back in Louisville. I’ll be at a lot more shows now, so say “Hi” if you see me.