Formerly the frontwoman for Birmingham punks P.S. Eliot, songwriter Katie Crutchfield has branched out on her own as Waxahatchee, a leaner, more melodic solo project. Now based in Philadelphia, Crutchfield has two stellar records of confessional folk-pop under her belt. This year’s incredible Cerulean Salt LP drew more audibly from Crutchfield’s roots, incorporating fuzzed-out guitar and emotive pop-punk melodies, resulting in something similar to early Liz Phair, but without the forced sexuality. New Jersey’s Screaming Females became quasi-legendary a few years back for their incredible live show, wherein singer Marisa Paternoster’s manic energy offsets the vice-grip groove of bassist Mike Abbate and drummer Jared Dougherty. Wisconsin garage-punks Tenement and local popsters Grape Soda round out a great late-week bill.
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