When the bond of bandmates is strong, a crowd can feel it–the synchronicity, the flow, and the seamless harmonies. Such was the case with Candace, the new-wave rock trio that currently calls Portland, Oregon their home.  Relocations and lineup shifts have made the journey a long one for the group. They’ve been through a lot together and apart, and their strength and resilience shows in their music.

Candace celebrated the release of their new EP New Ruins with a show at Portland’s Mississippi Studios, and the crowd was amped up and ready. The mood of the band’s set was an interesting juxtaposition to their openers, which lit us up with girl punk and loud garage rock. The backdrop of their album cover and the shaded lights onstage set an intimate scene.  The crowd moved closer, and the ladies of Candace put their hearts onstage. They played much of their new album, from the sweet, head-bobbing “Between the Day and Now,” to the psychedelic “Mendocino”; “Wait Always” was a beautiful interlude, which brought their acid-rock roots into the present, and the set came to a close with the dreamy, floating “Waltz.”

With entrancing, melodic layers, Candace enthralled us with their moody music; their banter was minimal and quiet, though only several songs into their set, they were joined by a masked guest singer–doing their part to keep Portland weird, and showing us that the City of Roses has invaded their souls, something to which this Portland transplant could relate. It was an amazing night; Candace proved that girls can rock, and rock hard.

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[This review was handcrafted by Eo8’s own resident Portlander Sharon Zehender.]

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