The Vivian Girls

PUBLISHED : Sunday, 17 July, 2011, 12:00am
UPDATED : Sunday, 17 July, 2011, 12:00am


The Vivian Girls
Grappa's Cellar, July 9

Hong Kong has always had the potential to become one of the hottest cities in Asia for live music, and it sure felt like we'd arrived last weekend when US trio the Vivian Girls dropped in for a live show.

The Vivian Girls are one of the most significant bands to emerge from the dream-pop/noise rock scene sweeping across the US, and were brought in by local indie music champions Songs For Children. The show took place at Grappa's Cellar, in the heart of the financial district, with local bands Tigerbombers and Laura Palmer as the opening acts.

Tigerbombers - made up of local music mainstay Arthur Urquiola on guitar, Natalie Belbin on bass and Jasmine Robertson on drums - set the tone with their signature blend of rockabilly meets art-punk, while Palmer - who earns points for the David Lynch reference - presented a charming blend of Joy Division-esque vocals with Strokes-y riffs.

But the night took off when The Vivian Girls took to the stage. Guitarist Cassie Ramone and bassist Katy Goodman took turns on lead vocals, with Fiona Campbell on drums. For all the scratch and noise usually heard on a Girls record, their live act was atmospheric, with ambient guitar solos between bridge and chorus. The band played songs off their latest album, Share the Joy, as well as more of their signature hits off their first album, including tracks such as Tell the World and Where Do You Run To.

'Hong Kong is hot,' Ramone said. Yes, it sure was, and the Vivian Girls made it even hotter.