Once The Kills took the stage at The Fox Theater Pomona on September 2, 2016, the venue had fully filled in (after openers Autolux) and blood pressures had fully risen. Touring in support of their June release ‘Ash & Ice’, The Kills quickly ignited a spark in the Fox Theater. Alison Mosshart and Jamie Hince, now with two other touring musicians in tow, opened their set with 2005’s “No Wow”. Mosshart seemed to hit the stage running in her starry blouse and leather pants. As they pushed into the popular “U.R.A Fever” from 2008’s ‘Midnight Boom’, Mosshart showed off her rock-star prowess with her signature hair-flippage. Her howls created a momentum that stuck through their entire set. Each time she put a leg up on a speaker, bent backwards, and whipped her wild blonde mane, women in the audience would turn to their dates and say “She’s such a badass.”
While Hince initially came across as the cool-toned understated other-half, he soon showed off his finger-breaking guitar chops and together, The Kills gave their fans a hearty selection of their indie-punk-blues with blistering riffs and sleazy synth. The lights would shift from blinding bright white to deep blues and reds, and while there was plenty of hazy breathing room between Mosshart and Hince, they occasionally came together reminding fans of the inherent chemistry behind their on-stage marriage. Hince pushed a mic stand against his guitar strings, his tense and textured tones ringing into all corners of the theater. Mosshart strutted around the stage sometimes screeching fervently, sometimes smiling kindly at the sea out outstretched arms and cellphones.
With five studio albums spanning over 13 years, The Kills had quite a discography to whittle down into a 90-minute set. Tracks from ‘Ash & Ice’ were heavy on the list including new fan-fave “Doing It To Death”. They still managed to take from each of their records and closed the main set with “Monkey 23” from their 2003 debut. Mosshart returned for the encore alone with an acoustic guitar for “That Love” with its simple but impactful lyrics “It’s over now/That love you’re in/Is fucked up”. Though she is best-suited as a dramatic rock queen, Mosshart can still show off a no-frills sincerity that gave all her hair-whipping fans a moment of rest and reflection. Hince and the rest of the band returned for 3 more songs and the night closed with 2008’s “Sour Cherry” after which all four on stage came forward for a deserved sweaty bow.
Shot for BLURRED CULTURE