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Cassyette London Underworld Review | Stronger

What happens when you cast a TikTok superstar turned gender-splicing artist, a sex-positive trap-goth in a mask and a 19-year-old guitarist channeling 90s big names at a box office London venue closed 500 seats filled with adoring young fans? You get a gig that just might signal a sea change in the future of the alternative scene. And you definitely get a lot of talking points. Here are five as we digest an evening spent with Cassyette and her pals at the Camden Underworld.

It’s one of the most diverse youth crowds you’ll see at a rock show

It’s heartwarming to see a room full of young music fans so emboldened to express themselves freely. Cassyette concerts are one of the most inclusive spaces you’ll find on the rock scene right now – a safe space for everyone, whether it’s the queer community, the sex-positive community, music outsiders or simply the misfits who haven’t found a family to identify with yet. And everybody is happy. As. Shit. for this show.

AlienBlaze has the songs – the rest will hopefully come

Opening the concert tonight is 19-year-old singer-songwriter AlienBlaze, a British guitarist with multiple influences ranging from 90s grunge and post-punk to early 2000s emo. Blaze and her band are welcomed suggests they were a solid choice for this bill, and the reaction to every track released shows that she’s also packing songs. What she lacks in stage confidence compared to the other two artists playing tonight, she certainly makes up for in potential, and with a few tours under her belt, there could be some very exciting things to come.

Bambie Thug will surely come back and headline this place soon

Where there was polite interest and a decent handful of fans in attendance for AlienBlaze, there are twice as many bodies and four times as many heads for Bambie Thug. The hyperpop starlet struts around to cheers in a black ski mask and overcoat emblazoned with QUEER in huge white lettering, firing off screams as they rip it all off to reveal a White Ski goggle and corset combo that could have come straight off the catwalk at a Torture Garden Winter Ball. Flanked by hooded backing musicians serving up deep, low-pitched EDM beats for Bambie to purr, croon and spit on, it all makes for a soulful aural-visual treat – and the underworld absolutely benefits. The pending sex-positive anthem PMP (it’s Pussy. Money. Power) is an earworm that will burrow into your skull for days, while the low chorus of Birthday is both silly and irresistible. By the time their half-hour set is over, it’s hard to imagine that Bambie Thug won’t be returning to venues this size very, very soon.

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People are already obsessed with Cassyette

Seriously, it’s strong here when she comes out just after 9 p.m. Whatever you think about how Cassyette turned to releasing her own music — and let’s face it, if you don’t accept TikTok as a legitimate form of musical engagement at this point, it’s time to let go. 2019’s catches behind – she already has a fanbase hanging on her every move, and they’re starving. New song Mayhem – chosen as the world’s hottest record by BBC Radio 1 this week – is being welcomed as an old favourite, while Petrichor and last year’s catchy pop-rock single Dear Goth are being sung about heartily by a bouncing populace of increasingly pumped-up devotees. And speaking of singing, the fact that Cassyette can fuck lament also helps. Not bad at all for someone who hasn’t even released an album yet.

Artists like these are proof that alternative culture is entering a new phase

Are Cassyette and Bambie Thug rock artists in the traditional sense? Not really. They are representative of a generation that feeds on 50 genres at once and crushes them to see what comes of it. But does it look, sound and, above all, feel like a real rock show? Damn damn yes it does. Most of the fans here tonight are no less outcasts than the bullied kids who showed up en masse to My Chemical Romance shows in the 2000s, or Korn shows in the 90s, or…well, you see the image. In a world where we seemingly need Hole’s Celebrity Skin cover of Doja Cat to prove there’s still an appetite for alternative music, it’s refreshing to see the scene’s new life on platforms like TikTok is finally beginning to spread to real-world locations. Alternate culture is entering a new phase, and in Cassyette, that phase may have just found its figurehead.

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