by Allison Palum
The first time I saw Diet Cig was a little over a year ago at the Servant Jazz Quarters in Dalston, London. It was a small venue in a stuffy basement that was packed with maybe 30 people who, I don’t think, knew what they had signed up for. Despite being far from home and surrounded by people who were experiencing their vibe for the first time, Alex Luciano and Noah Bowman proceeded to slap everyone in the face with their slop/pop punk goodness. It was epic.
Since that night, I have seen Diet Cig open for The Front Bottoms and play a show at a small venue in Rochester, NY, but none of those gigs begin to compare to their album release show at Baby’s All Right on Friday night. On the evening that their debut album, Swear I’m Good At This, graced this earth, Luciano and Bowman threw Brooklyn a party. This show felt different than their previous ones that I had seen because Friday nights show was completely Diet Cig’s. There was a mass of friends and family that had showed up to support them, which resulted in an on stage dance party during “Harvard”, the last song of their set.
NPR Music released a first listen of Swear I’m Good At This on March 30th. Prior to this, three singles had been released including “Tummy Ache”, “Barf Day”, and “Link In Bio”. Despite these songs only being available to the public for a short period of time, the crowd screamed the lyrics at the top of their lungs as if they had been listening to them for years. I was shocked at first, but then after seconds of thought, it all made sense. Diet Cig songs are simple. Lyrically, musically, and visually. They are easy to understand; easy to relate to; easy to latch onto. Luciano’s lyrics often revolve around her own coming of age and trying to navigate the male dominated industry that she finds herself a part of. When belting the words “My stomach hurts / ‘cause it’s hard to be a punk while wearing a skirt” the whole crowd shares their anger over preconceived ideas of what it means to be “punk”. Or, what one is supposed to look or act like in order to fit into a particular scene. When, in reality, the most punk thing someone can do is just live their truth and not give a flying fuck what anyone says about it.
Diet Cig celebrates this attitude during their sets. By declaring their shows safer spaces and announcing that their audience is their top priority, they essentially allow everyone to be themselves, to demand respect and to join them in dancing, screaming, sweating, and jumping around. Honestly, after a Diet Cig show, you’ll end up leaving with a sweat soaked shirt, making three new friends, and a smile from ear to ear.
Give our Diet Cig inspired playlist a listen
after you check out Swear I’m Good At this.