TV Girl Disappoints at The Irenic

Photo courtesy of Laura Feltman.

After the move from the Ché Cafe, the TV Girl concert on February 7 at The Irenic in North Park felt like a hastily put-together house show.

Before the show, band members Brad Wyman and Wyatt Harmon both expressed to me conflicted feelings towards the venue change. They highlighted the challenge between increasing capacity for eager fans and possibly excluding students who couldn’t make the trip to North Park.

Opening for the band was Virginia-born artist George Clanton, formerly known as Mirror Kisses, with a performance befitting The Irenic’s church setting. Lauded as a vaporwave visionary, Clanton produced his latest album, Slide, which is a unique blend of vaporwave, chillwave, synth, and hypnagogic pop.

Clanton’s live performances are best known for his physicality. The first few rows were in rapture with Clanton crowd surfing and embracing fans during songs such as “Dumb” and “Make It Forever.”

Given Clanton and TV Girl’s music styles and cult followings, I expected the same grand production and passionate performance from the Clanton set during TV Girl’s show.

Unfortunately, TV Girl’s unique sound could not make up for the set’s lackluster performance and technical difficulties. During multiple songs such as “Heaven is a Bedroom,” the vocals were either overshadowed by deafening bass or just completely cut out. Lead vocalist Brad Petering, who usually punctuates the set with witty remarks and monologues, gave two half-baked speeches about heartbreak, roses, and cheap drinks.

The group also experimented with an unreleased song and a cover that fell flat for an audience that was most familiar with the band’s top two hits: “Lover’s Rock” and “Birds Don’t Sing.”  

After the show, the venue cleared out quickly, leaving behind about 25 UC San Diego students who wanted to keep the party going. It made me wonder how the show could have been in a more intimate college venue full of close friends.

Mo Al Elew is the Editor-in-Chief of The Triton. You can follow him on Twitter @SoloMune.