Concert Preview: D.C. bands Ex Hex and Foul Swoops to play at Black Cat

If you don’t get a chance to make it out to U St. Music Hall on March 1st to see D.C.-based band, GEMs, and Maryland-based band, Uno Hype, don’t worry! Vox has a few more good suggestions of ways you can support the D.C. music scene and its venues. D.C. bands Ex Hex and Foul Swoops will perform together at Black Cat on Wednesday, March 5.

First of all, Black Cat is an extremely cool venue. It’s distinctive from 9:30 Club in that it has two concert rooms. On the first floor is a cozy venue where smaller bands play, creating a more intimate atmosphere. On the second floor is a much larger space, where audiences can pack in for bigger-time bands. Overall, with low-lights and all that jazz, it’s unique for its dive-baresque feel.

Ex Hex would be a perfect band to see at Black Cat, because you can get intimacy and the customary rowdiness of a rock n’ roll band at the same time. And they’re talented, too. Mary Timony, previously part of Autoclave, Helium, and Wild Flag, brings experience and expertise to her newest project. As Pitchfork says, Timony, along with band members Betsy Wright, the Fire Tapes bassist, and Laura Harris, the Aquarium drummer, “seems keen to nix the fanfare and break out the fuzzboxes.”

As she told Rookie Magazine in an interview, Timony started her rock n’ roll career to try to become a better musician than her rockstar brother. As a kid, Timony, who previously played the viola, started to play and teach herself the guitar. After a few years, she transferred to Duke Ellington School of the Arts, a performing-arts high school in the District, in order to study jazz and classical guitar.

Her role models were native D.C. punk and hardcore artists, including Fugazi, the late 80s post-hardcore band. She fell in love with all that the hardcore scene had to offer: the hard resounding music, the eclectic styles of the bands and, and the audiences with edgy hairstyles and clothing. As a girl, she felt that she had found her crowd.

Most of the D.C. punk and hardcore bands that Timony saw were male-dominated, but that didn’t stop her from wanting to be apart of it. “In D.C., the punk scene was pretty political, and being a girl in a band at that time really was a feminist statement,” she told Rookie Magazine. “There were not a lot of girls doing it, so simply being in a band was a boldly feminist move.” Timony’s decision to be in a band was natural but empowering for her and her future as a successful rock n’ roll artist.

According to DCist, Foul Swoops isn’t active when it comes to releasing new music. Nonetheless, they are the band to see live. See Vox’s band profile for more details on their story, sound, and style.

Tickets to see Ex Hex and Foul Swoops can be purchased for $10 here. And, for only two more dollars, go backstage with these cool cats (no pun intended, even though the show is at Black Cat and all).

Photo: Foul Swoops via Facebook

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