It would be easy to assume too much about Seattle alt-rock act Big Eyes based on their name alone – there can be only one “Big Eyes” and right now that’s a certain adorkable pixie sitcom star. Thankfully, images of poofy skirts, tiaras and ukuleles are jettisoned the moment Big Eyes vocalist Kate Eldridge takes the stage. Blending Ramones/Joan Jett attitude and economy with occasional chunky surf riffs and (reluctantly) lovelorn lyrics, the band’s full-length album, last fall’s Hard Life, presents Eldridge as an artist who may be willing to embrace modern retro trends, but would never want to be the homecoming queen. Or, for that matter, the new girl. – Veronica Figueroa
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