Sizzy Rocket brings punk influence to modern pop on Grrrl | Concert Preview | Chicago Reader

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Sizzy Rocket brings punk influence to modern pop on Grrrl


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Sizzy Rocket—the self-proclaimed “royalty of the punks and the letdowns”—is a perpetual motion machine. The LA pop star is a near constant presence on social media, tours frequently, and has released a steady stream of singles and EPs since dropping her debut full-length, Thrills, in 2016. This month, she’s embarking on her first headlining tour to celebrate the release of her second album, Grrrl. The title track is a shimmery neon-drenched love letter to the 80s, complete with massive choruses and a music video loaded with faux VHS effects. Discovering mutual queer lust with a close friend never sounded better than on the single “Bestie,” an urgently horny ode to crossing into sexual territory with a platonic friend that’s anchored by dance-floor-filling synths and finger snaps. Rocket has expanded her musical palette since those days; on 2017’s Hot Summer mixtape she incorporates the brashness of early Kesha along with the rock ’n’ roll attitude of Joan Jett and the Runaways (referenced on the title track), and on this spring’s “Dang” she deftly croons over a trap beat. While Rocket’s music is a mix of pop strains, her inspirations are pure punk: she makes cut-and-paste zines, the title of Grrrl is an obvious nod to the riot-grrrl movement, and lead single “Sid Vicious” is a piano-heavy paean to falling for military-jacket-wearing bad boys (e.g., the bass player of the Sex Pistols). Rocket manages to blend the urgency and nihilism of 70s punk into modern pop without seeming like a tourist, and her shows are still small enough that the stage is barely a divider between performer and audience—they’re communal experiences, just masses of kids all screaming along with the songs.   v

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