Expectations are shaken when you least expect them to be. This has been one of the ways I’ve been able to explain seeing the Drowners perform at the Star Theater in Portland, Oregon.
Out of the Big Apple and nonetheless encased in that New York vibe, it’s hard to not peek here and there just to see what these lazy punks have in store when it comes to music. Their 12-track debut album Drowners, self-titled, of course, brings out a little bit more of that secret, inner love for all things infused with the sexual. Budding hormones, being human, and the fact that this band can write catchy songs doesn’t mean you should write them off.
One thing that has been noted from the East Coast to the West Coast has always been the energetic atmosphere once created by early punk bands. Regardless of whether or not you can bust a move and shake your hips, or if you care whether people are coming to the show to see your band or another band, by all means lose your shit and thrash on your instruments as wild children, like the Drowners, were intended to.
As luck usually has it, there are only a handful of bands that come to Portland and can really rile up a few individuals. Maybe the peace-loving environment has knocked off the grunge era, but honestly if you can get five people from a Portland audience to headbang, you deserve a medal.
Describing the Drowners’ music can be simplified to a lyrical love for writing about women and relationships. If you’ve read some of the lyrics, such as those on “A Button On Your Blouse,” the relationship dynamic, which borders on a variation of the infamous Sid & Nancy, is sure to inspire chills.
As of now, Drowners may still be fresh and new enough to have their singles slip by the radar. But, for a band who got to play in PDX via word of mouth, and who tore up the stage with a handful of songs, I have to say they are impressive.
Drowners completed their US tour shortly after playing at Coachella, but they are gearing up for the UK.