Delivering American University's news and views since 1925. | Tuesday, September 19, 2017

Mitski made listening about the sadness of life, fun at her sold-out DC show.

The Japanese-born indie rocker played a tight, emotional set at 9:30 Club

Mitski made listening about the sadness of life, fun at her sold-out DC show.

Acclaimed singer-songwriter Mitski played the 9:30 Club on July 8, captivating the sold-out crowd while playing songs from her 2016 album “Puberty 2.” Mitski brought to the table a rare mix of punk rock spirit and a composed, calculated demeanor that effortlessly drew concertgoers into her ultra-personal music.

It is rare to see a crowd so eager to hear songs of heartbreak and pain, but when Mitski took the stage, it became imminently clear why. The singer stood tall in heels and a white robe, rarely ever moving around the stage as she played, at times, menacing and always moody bass notes.

Mitski started off her set with “Francis Forever,” a standout track from her 2014 album, and moved right through her set, only ever stopping to briefly thank the crowd. While it’s clear that Mitski isn’t quite accustomed to fame yet, her apparent shyness didn’t hold her back as she sang earnest, beautiful songs about topics from breakups to aging.

Although her first studio album, “Lush,” debuted in 2012, it was not until the bold, dark “Bury Me at Makeout Creek,” that the singer received widespread attention and praise from major music outlets. With songs like “First Love/Late Spring,” Mitski delivered poignant lyrics with a nearly unparalleled level of emotional authenticity.

Last year, “Puberty 2,” made Mitski an indie household name, bringing in new listeners who would not normally listen to such aggressive, punk-influenced music.

Unsurprisingly, her 2016 hit “Your Best American Girl,” got the most energy from the crowd, but the crowd was behind her for every beat during her 50-minute set.

Mitski has proved herself time and time again that she is one of the premier female songwriters working. A strong and growing fanbase, enthralling live show and a knack for making cathartic poetry out of tragedy will keep the rocker around for a long time.

growell@theeagleonline.com


Never miss a story.

Get our weekly newsletter in your inbox.