A drummerless electric guitar-and-bass duo offering a sparse but spirited take on empowered indie rock, Girlpool's Cleo Tucker and Harmony Tividad borrow plenty of attitude from early-'90s trailblazers like Liz Phair, Juliana Hatfield, and Shampoo.
The duo formed in 2013, when Tucker and Tividad were still teenagers living in Los Angeles. Sometimes fun and playful, other times raw and vulnerable, their punk flair and honesty struck a chord on their self-released eponymous debut EP. Tucker and Tividad were approached by British indie Wichita Recordings, who set up a U.K. tour and re-released their debut in November 2014. Late that year, the duo relocated to Philadelphia and recorded with Kyle Gilbride of Swearin'; the results were 2015's full-length debut, Before the World Was Big. Following the success of their debut, plans to work with Wilco's Jeff Tweedy on the follow-up were mounted, but scheduling issues meant the duo ended up working on the record themselves in the end. The near collaboration signaled a slight departure from the minimal instrumentation of their first record, as Tucker and Tividad decided to develop their sound with additional instrumentation on their sophomore effort. Despite the additional drums on Powerplant, the pair stayed true to their core sound, and the record was released in 2017. In 2018, the band collaborated with Dev Hynes (Blood Orange, Lightspeed Champion) on the single "Picturesong." ~ Timothy Monger