“How can I even afford to be alive? How can I even afford to die?” bassist Annie wonders on “Earth Dweller,” the title track of The Groans’ 2019 album. “A paycheck should not determine my worth/In the end, we’re all pathetic humans destroying ourselves and the Earth.” The local queer-punk trio have a lot to be mad about, making their raw, feral style of punk feel relevant and timely. Annie rails about white-supremacist cops on “Blue (Lives Don’t Matter),” defends herself from trolls on “Internet Entitlement,” and criticizes school systems that favors “rich suburban kids” over poor students on “Rigged,” as guitarist Dewie and drummer Nadine hammer out a passionately aggressive punk attack. Even amid all their fury, The Groans show an endearing and yearning pop side on such reflective tunes as “Missing the Trees, Friends & Everything in Between.” With Fucked Forever, Street Play, and Faetooth.
The Smell, 247 S. Main St., downtown L.A.; Sat., Feb. 8, 8 p.m.; $5. www.thesmell.org.
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