With an extension till midnight for The Lillettes’ farewell gig, its fair to say the Green Room was brimming. Beginning back in late 1998 this girl garage punk outfit have really earned themselves a following, judging on the turnout for their last set.
Such a packed venue with intense lighting resulted in heat not unlike a sweaty summer gig. However even sticky leather and suede didn’t stop anyone enjoying themselves, especially as a few local bands kicked off the evening by performing Lillettes’ songs.
The One Night Stands turned out to pay their tribute to the girls, followed by an interesting acapella of ‘Suck your blood’ from a guy called Justin. As far as tribute acts go, The Ladettes really stole the show with their entertaining cross-dressing appearance, performing the song ‘Tranny Twist’ whilst sporting masks of all the girls.
Before gracing the stage for one last time, The Lillettes decided to hold their own award ceremony with categories like ‘biggest fan’ won by a hard rocking newsagent with so many piercings in his ear that that it was a wonder his neck wasn’t crooked! His enthusiasm for the evening certainly proved his worthiness of the award with even the lead guitarist winning a little trophy for talented song writing.
After a break, to allow people to pass out at the bar from sheer heat, the moment everyone was anticipating arrived. The Lillettes began their last set. It was amazing to see such a mixed audience of all ages from cowboys, to punks, to Goths, all there to make sure every last minute of the last gig was not missed. It was also impressive to see just how wide The Lillettes girl’s fan base is; showing that they will certainly be missed by people from all walks of life.
Add to this an excellent stage presence and it would be hard to deny that they deserved all the attention they got, especially considering how tight a unit they are belting out a range of superb original tunes. Rarely does a set list contain such a range of music, from a cover of The Ramones’ ‘I Don’t Care’ to their own punk, rock, and nu-metal.
They began with their own intro involving the spelling out of “Lillettes”, which is obviously a tradition much loved by their fans. Sound levels at the beginning were obviously not up to audience expectation with many shouting for the girls to be turned up. Their music was raw and edgy, commanding vocal presence with exuberant drumming, and spine tingling guitar and bass. Infectious choruses made it difficult for even the newcomers not to join in.
Part way through the girls brought in their talented replacement bassist, who joined when the original was on maternity leave, to play a couple of her favourite songs. From the audience reaction and energy, ‘Velocerator’ seemed to be one of the most popular songs, which may have something to do with a megaphone in front of the mic! The lead guitarist described ‘Suck Your Blood’ as a ‘definitive classic’ and she wasn’t wrong. Written by the drummer, it has catchy lyrics and powerful guitar riffs.
The evening climaxed with a number called ‘Dog’, leaving the Bournemouth gang celebrating in a shower of party poppers.
It’s the first time I’ve seen this band, which just goes to show that splitting up isn’t going to stop them gaining fans. An all girl five-piece band with a truly unique sound.