Show Review

The Regrettes @ Mahall's 3/31

Lisa Sanchez

Sometimes there are bands you like in spite of yourself. For me, The Regrettes is one of those bands. The Los Angeles four piece is catchy, funny, and so easy to dance to you run the risk of embarrassing yourself in front of teenagers by bopping around in a basement. Which, incidentally, is exactly what I did when I went to see The Regrettes at Mahall's.

The Regrettes released their first full-length album in January of this year, Feel Your Feelings Fool!, which is a light-hearted, but well constructed album. I resent any description that puts a band's gender at the forefront, but The Regrettes are best described as a "girl band" in the 1960s sense of the phrase. The Regrettes provide woman-centered lyrics and endearing honesty, even if it does read as "body posi/feminism lite." The band reminds me of a combination of Best Coast, The Runaways, and a splash Brat Mobile for flavor.

Although I knew The Regrettes members weren't old enough to drink, I was still surprised when half the Mahall's crowd was comprised of parents accompanying their teenage children to the show. But, when I was a teenager I was going to shows that often ended in me getting side kicked in the face by a six foot man wearing gym shorts. These kids have clearly made better decisions than I did at that age.

Considering The Regrettes don't have a huge discography built up, they basically played the entirety of Feel Your Feelings Fool! which suited my expectations just fine. I promised myself that I would try and be semi-professional and not dance the entire time, but it wasn't possible when The Regrettes opened with "I Don't Like You," a bouncy number which is a great response to basically any cat call or unomfortable date request.

The shitty and great thing about The Regrettes is that they don't have a bad song. You can find something dancy and fast with songs like "Hot," "You Won't Do" and "Lacy Loo," or melodic, fun sing-alongs like "Hey Now" and "How It Should Be." The only reason a solid song collection is a detriment is when assholes like me have to write a review and sound facile by saying, "Everything is great! Duh."
‚ÄčThe Regrettes were super fun live, including lead singer Lydia Night's dance moves and facial expressions which accompanied every song. The band is young, but their smiles and the fun they're having onstage is infectious, even when they're playing in a bowling alley basement. The Regrettes invite you to dance like no one is looking, but even if they were, the songs allow you to not give a shit at how uncool you may look. 

Although the show was a good time, the Mahall's basement is not the place to get the prime dance hall experience that The Regrettes are made for. The sound was off to the point of being blaring and the band wasn't as polished sounding as their album led me to believe. 

However, I do secretly believe that The Regrettes were formed in some Los Angeles super lab that combined good looks, style, and the mathematical equation for a song that will be stuck in your head for five days (warning: that song is "Lacy Loo") to create the band. The quartet has already cultivated a recognizable aesthetic and super fun songs so I imagine they'll be taking over the world in about three years time.

The Regrettes' current tour is the longest of their career and it's the first time they've ever played in Ohio. On April 11, the band will be featured on Conan  in their inevitable rise to major popularity. Listen to them now so you'll have credibility when they go triple platinum so you can say "Yeah, it's good, but I liked their first album better.