Smooth out punk's crinkly guitar riffs, replace the genre's frenetic deliveries with soothing harmonies, and give its drums a low dose of Xanax, and you have Jennifer and Jessica Clavin's brand-new band, Bleached. Like the visuals from their recent "Think of You" video, their sound is that of a vintage postcard with curled edges from sunny, "surf's up!" California.
The San Fernando Valley-raised sisters seem to be poster girls for that carefree lifestyle. They're easygoing and sweet, talking over and finishing each other's sentences. But they haven't completely abandoned the riot grrl lawlessness of Mika Miko, their former all-girl punk group. "We've done a couple Bleached shows at the Smell where people were crowd surfing," Jessica says. Ahead of their show at Los Globos tonight, here's five reasons why they're still punk as fuck.
They come from an explosive background (literally).
Their mom was really into singing, and she sang a lot of country and Linda Ronstadt around the house. Their dad, on the other hand, used to make bombs. "He grew up in the Midwest on a huge farm, and he figured out how to make bombs, so he blew up cars, and the dock on this lake," says one of the sisters. (We interviewed them over the phone, and it's sometimes hard to tell their voices apart.) "If punk was around he would've been a punk, but he was more into rock-n-roll. He had his own band."
They agree with our philosophy: Fuck Guilty Pleasures.
"Last night, we were driving out to my mom's in the desert and we put on Mariah Carey," Jessica says. "And we'll go to a party and put on the Spice Girls. But we won't turn it off; we'll start singing." If you're wondering, Jessica worshiped Baby Spice. "I bought a pair of those white platform sneakers she wore!" she says.
They have a history of breaking and entering.
When they were teenagers, Jessica and Jennifer would break into schools at night and skateboard. Once, the cops came and they ran to hide in a bush. "We were right next to them, like five of us behind this bush, and they were shining their lights on the bush but they never saw us!"
But they weren't always so lucky. "We broke into the Van De Kamp Bakery--it was abandoned, but we got caught. The cops and helicopters came and they took us home in the cop car. Our dad answered the door, and the cops were like, "Your children were vandalizing Van De Kamp Bakery," and my dad was like, 'Uhhh, okay.' Like, he didn't even care." Not a big deal when your teenage years were spent building bombs.
They know how to handle (and start) trouble.
Life on the road with Mika Miko was rarely dull. In Detroit, they stayed with people who made honey, and ended up sleeping in the room where the bees were kept.
Meanwhile, "In Texas once, we were at a house all smoking weed and the weed must have been laced with something really bad, because people started turning green, going crazy and throwing up, and we had to go to the hospital."
"Oh, and we'd start fights with other bands!"
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They learned their moves from the greats.
"In Mika Miko, Jenn and I would jump around and go in the crowd," Jessica says.
"We didn't sound like a hardcore band, but I acted like the singer of one, like an '80s band. We would get this crazy energy and get really excited," Jennifer adds. "Jessie's guitar playing has more of a country influence, but bands we're really inspired by are The Ramones, Misfits, Gun Club, Rolling Stone, Fleetwood Mac, Blondie. I think the last time we went to see Blondie we snuck in."
Bleached plays tonight at Los Globos, 3040 W Sunset Blvd. Doors open at 9 p.m. $7.