A longtime site favorite, grungy, Brooklyn power pop outfit Charly Bliss wowed us with some early Music City stops several years back, supporting Veruca Salt and appearing at The Stone Fox on tours before they’d even released a proper full-length. It’s been a couple years since the band last made it to Nashville, however, most recently appearing at The High Watt in support of their stunning debut album, Guppy, in early 2017. In the time since, the group have only continued to grow in buzz, celebrated for their juxtaposition of nostalgic, poppy, energetic pop rock with more serious and personal lyrical themes, and have doubled down on their pop leanings with their stellar recent sophomore effort, Young Enough, one of our favorite albums of the year so far. Returning to town for their largest headliner yet in support tonight, July 9 at Mercy Lounge, Charly Bliss will be joined by fellow Brooklynite, also celebrating a great new LP, electronic pop singer Emily Reo. Without a doubt one of our most-anticipated shows of the summer, you can get tickets right here while they last, and read on for more about the show!
Formed around the start of the decade, and now based in Brooklyn, New York (though their origins trace to Connecticut, and their ties extended further back as friends, family members, and musical kindred spirits), buzzworthy bubble-grunge/power pop outfit Charly Bliss spent their early years gigging around the city, before releasing their stunning debut EP, Soft Serve, in the summer of 2014. Fueled by the deeply personal lyricism and super sweet delivery of frontwoman Eva Hendricks, juxtaposed with often angsty or self-reflective themes, the band have built a grassroots fanbase over the last few years, touring consistently, and performing with acts like Veruca Salt, Sleater-Kinney, Wolf Parade, and Death Cab for Cutie. After a few false starts, Charly Bliss, rounded out by Hendricks’ brother Sam on drums, Spencer Fox on guitar, and Dan Shure on bass, finally came to grips with their pop-leaning sensibilities, and found a balance between that and their Weezer-esque knack for crafting huge rock hooks, to forge debut full-length, Guppy. Released in the spring of 2017, the record felt like a band coming into their own, both in its ability to create a sort of perpetual, pleasant, high school nostalgia in its upbeat, grungy power pop, and also in Hendricks’ reflections on heartbreak, insecurity, misogyny, and angst, hovering between the punk and pop world, and fueled by raw emotional undertones and hyperactive hooks. In the couple of years since, Charly Bliss have only continued to rise in critical acclaim, continuing to tour and earning a reputation one one of the most interesting rising acts in the indie scene. For their recently released sophomore LP, Young Enough, the group recruited esteemed producer Joe Chiccarelli, taking a more pop-rooted approach than on Guppy to craft their most cohesive, glistening, epic, and honed work yet, still maintaining their rock bite, while doubling down on a polished, pop sheen, once again laced with a dark, earnest, tumultuous, and angsty thematic through-line, feeling at once the most mainstream and accessible, and also the most personal and genuine album from the band to date. At this rate, Charly Bliss only stand to become bigger and better, and there’s never been a better time to see their compelling live show in person!
Though her musical aesthetic and artistic journey is distinctly different from that of Charly Bliss, electronic pop performer Emily Reo, also a Brooklyn transplant, took a similar path towards more conventionally poppy and polished accessibility with her latest and third full-length, Only You Can See It. Fiercely independent- writing, performing, recording, mixing, and engineering her own music, all with the thoughtful, cohesive, and thorough eye of her work as a visual artist- Reo sprung onto the scene a decade ago with her more lo-fi, bedroom pop leaning debut, Minha Gatinha. Her critical breakthrough would come with 2013 followup, Olive Juice, a more refined work which saw the singer step out of the lo-fi haze and position her pop sensibilities more front and center. In the years since, as she’s refined her sound, toured as part of Sad13, amassed widespread buzz for 2016 single “Spell,” and continued to creatively explore various mediums, the Orlando born pop polymath has really taken to embracing lush keyboards, electronic tones, and synthesized vocal effects, layering a lush, pop sheen over earnest, personal, and socially charged themes. Met with a renewed wave of buzz for her best record yet, Emily Reo is an inspired choice to support this tour, and a very good reason to show up early!
Charly Bliss and Emily Reo will perform tonight, July 9 at Mercy Lounge. The show is 18+, begins at 8 p.m. (doors at 7 p.m.), and tickets are available to purchase for $17.