Review: Pwr Bttm's 'Pageant' Is Wild-Hearted Glam-Punk Subversion

Our take on the upstate New York duo's second LP

Pwr Bttm's latest album is 'Pageant.' Credit: Ebru Yildiz

A glammy punk duo from upstate New York, Pwr Bttm mix Bowie-esque gender/genre subversion with wild-hearted vulnerability: "When you are queer you are always 19," Ben Hopkins sings against operatic backing vocals and slamming guitars on "LOL." He rips Eddie Van Halen peals on the haplessly romantic "Silly," while drummer Liv Bruce wrings shout-along comedy out of modern-dating insecurity on "Answer My Text." The corker is "Big Beautiful Day," an anthem for oppressed queer kids that bursts with rage and empathy.