by Sky Disco
Inspired by the rock fury of Hunter Valentine at Bowery Electric on Friday night, I resorted to researching historic female warriors for comparisons. As it turns out, women trained and fought battles to entertain the masses, just as men did. As powerful as the Roman Empire’s Gladiatrix, Hunter Valentine suggested that they were ready for anything.
Gazing around the venue revealed a nearly all female audience, all of whom filled the main floor and pushed their way as close to the stage as possible. Indeed, the Bowery Electric, with its subterranean stone walls, had become a sort-of miniature Colosseum. Emerging from backstage with their artillery of guitars, drums, and a giant bottle of Jack Daniels, the women were prepared to give the crowd what they came for: a racy, thunderous show.
I’ve heard many musicians talk about it, but this was the first time I actually felt like I’d experienced a true wall of sound. Every frequency and texture in the spectrum was covered and had its designated place in the mix. Their sound being my trigger, I found myself moving to the music without even deciding to. It was as if they were gladiatrices battling lions: you could feel the roar in your chest.
The authenticity and drive put forward by all four players in the band was simply enthralling. Frontwoman and guitarist Kiyomi McCloskey started the group in 2004 with drummer Laura Petracca; the band also includes bassist Vero Sanchez and multi-instrumentalist Somer Rizham, who adds keys, guitar, and other digital effects to the mix, keeping the energy at a consistent peak. Kiyomi packs a punch with her lyrics, injecting adrenaline into every listener. Laura brought heavy, rock-solid rhythm and vocal harmonies. This being her second tour with the group, Vero owned the stage and had magnetic presence.
See the video below to hear a backstage interview with the band and view more photos from the night.