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Imperial Teen’s Eternal Adolescence

It was something of a homecoming show for San Francisco-based poprockers Imperial Teen, who played to a small but devoted crowd Thursdaynight (Dec. 13) at the Independent. After explaining that this venuewas where they’d played their very first show, Imperial Teen wasted notime in unleashing their signature boy/girl harmonies and irreverentlyrics. Poised beneath funky flashing green and magenta lights, and ablack and white stage backdrop, Roddy Bottum and crew got the crowdmovin’ with a heavy guitar line on “Do It Better” and impeccableharmonies of “Shim Sham,” both found on their latest LP, The Hair the TV the Baby and the Band.

ImperialTeen also earned their B-52’s comparisons as bassist Jone Stebbinsharmonized perfectly on “Everyone Wants to Know,” while Bottum played acool keyboard on “Sweet Potato.” The keyboard was on loan courtesy ofopening act, Von Iva, the Bay Area synth rawk trio fronted by vixensoulstress Jillian Iva, whose shy curtsy couldn’t disguise the band’sraw energy on the L.A. toxic tale, “La La.” But before calling it anight, Imperial Teen dusted off a few crowd-pleasing classics,including the intense pounding guitars of “Alone in the Grass.” DrummerLynn Truell (née Perko) also emerged from behind her kit to take onbass duties and backing vocals for “Yoo Hoo.” Really, after a five yearbreak, what is not to love about Imperial Teen?

We asked: Imperial Teen’s latest album is titled The Hair the TV the Baby and the Band.If you were stranded on a desert island, which one of these items (thehair, the TV, the baby or the band) would you want to have with you,and why?