Cindy Wilson + Olivia Jean 11/16/17, Denver

Dates: November 16, 2017

Location: Marquis Theatre, Denver CO

Femme magic at the Marquis Theatre, courtesy one B-52 and one Belle. (Above photo from Wilson’s Facebook page.)


Olivia Jean is a Nashville-based gal who was previously in a band called the Black Belle and has some kind of connection to Jack White. My pal and I got to the show a little bit late but caught the last few songs by the very retro-looking gal and her band and they sounded like some nice retro 60’s garage pop. Next time she/they’re in town gonna make sure to make it early as I liked what (little) I heard.

The new Cindy Wilson record is certainly a pleasant surprise. Change is on Kill Rock Stars no less (this was after the release of a few EPs, Sunrise and Supernatural) has plenty of surprises. Yes, the erstwhile B-52’s vocalist apparently had this one in the works for quite some time. She has a very talented band of youngsters in her band including a female on keyboards/violin who seemed to be the secret weapon. In addition there was a screen behind her showing assorted psychedelic videos so a multi-media event is always welcome.

…and Wilson herself seemed to be in a great mood. Smiling the whole time while dressed in all black, her former beehive now close-cropped (with the sunglasses not coming off all night) and looking quite fabulous, I must say.

Her current sound is a little hard to pin down with elements of pop, new wave, disco, electronica and rock all melded togeter into one unique stew.

In addition to the hypnotic electropop of the recently-released single “No One Can Tell You” we heard other cuts like the pumped-up disco of “Take My Time’ (from the Sunrise EP) and the dreamy pop of “Twice Shy.” They also did a cover of another Athens, Ga band Oh OK with their rendition of “Brother.” They played other EP cuts  like “Ballistic and “Frenzy” (both form the Supernatural).

Wilson didn’t feel the need to throw in any B-52’s songs and good for her. Plus it didn’t matter as the small but enthusiastic crowd were shaking their moneymakers all night. The new record stands on its own and she seems totally confident with what she’s done. 40 years after her other band initially got going it’s great to see her still at it and sounding great. (Tour dates are HERE at her website.


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