Live Review: Filthy Friends, Dressy Bessy, Philadelphia, May 21, 2019

It’s FFF (Filthy Friends Friday) at MAGNET, so we’re bringing you live reviews of the band’s recent shows in Philly and NYC. Our M.J. Fine (words) and Chris Sikich (photos) followed the supergroup—members of R.E.M., Sleater-Kinney, Minus 5, Baseball Project, Young Fresh Fellows and too many more to name—up the Northeast corridor to bring you the dirt on these Filthy Friends and their pals Dressy Bessy.

Filthy Friends struck a chord at Johnny Brenda’s with their catchy tunes about climate change, gentrification, racial injustice and love in the time of resistance, and Election Night gave them an extra resonance.

The all-star band sounded great as it ran through most of 2017’s Invitation and the recent Emerald Valley (both Kill Rock Stars); Corin Tucker’s inimitable wail paired naturally with the with crunchy, melodic riffs played by Peter Buck, Kurt Bloch and Tucker herself, and Scott McCaughey and Linda Pitmon make for a mighty sweet rhythm section.

Dressy Bessy thrived, too, offering tunes from the new Fast Faster Disaster (Yep Roc) and a bracing clutch of perfect pop nuggets from throughout its career.

Highlights: Filthy Friends’ “One Flew East,” “Angels,” “Hey Lacey,” “Despierta,” “Love In The Time Of Resistance”; Dressy Bessy’s “This May Hurt,” “Mon Cheri” (with Bloch on additional guitar) and a lively cover of Buzzcocks’ “What Do I Get?”

Dressy Bessy