Glam was as much a sartorial movement as a musical one – with glitter, platforms and androgynous fashion forming an exciting and, to some, frightening new visual language. Dressed in blouses and smeared, sparkly makeup, PWR BTTM certainly seem to hark back to the era with their aesthetic, as well as their brand of intermittently explosive rock. But the New York duo deviate from the glam template in tone – instead of arch, attention-grabbing camp, their flamboyance is simply a symptom of their earnest self-expression. Liv Bruce and Ben Hopkins – who alternate between drums and guitar/vocals – are both queer and use they/them/their pronouns.
During this debut they sweetly and pithily recount painful experiences related to this: Styrofoam articulates body dysmorphia, New Trick bemoans strangers who stare, and LOL rues a certain strain of vulnerability. But like all successful pop music, PWR BTTM can convert their highly specific sentiments into something universal – most notably in Answer My Text, which amusingly rages against the curse of the blank phone screen.