The Young Punk Rockers The Linda Lindas Play a Tiny Desk Concert Gig (at the Public Library)

The last we checked in with teenage girl pow­er-punk band The Lin­da Lin­das, they were tear­ing up the Los Ange­les Pub­lic Library (Cypress Park branch) with their lock­down-hit “Racist, Sex­ist Boy.” After eleven-year-old drum­mer Mila de Garza recount­ed the xeno­pho­bic encounter that led to the song, the band unleashed some true noisy angst befit­ting a group twice their age. It was the song of rage we need­ed at the time, the clip went viral, and they soon got a record deal. Along the way, they’ve appeared in Amy Poehler’s doc­u­men­tary, con­tributed to a track by Best Coast, opened for Biki­ni Kill, played Jim­my Kim­mel Live, and received acco­lades from Thurston Moore and Tom Morel­lo of Rage Against the Machine.

Just over a year lat­er, and The Lin­da Lin­das are back in the library as part of NPR’s Tiny Desk con­cert series. Usu­al­ly Tiny Desk gigs fea­tures an artist play­ing in the very cramped offices of the radio sta­tion, but as things are still not 100% safe, The Lin­da Lin­das opt­ed for the place they know well, this time play­ing at the Los Ange­les Cen­tral Library branch.

This band is no one-off. The de Garza sis­ters, along with their cousin Eloise Wong and friend Bela Salazar, formed in 2018 and have been play­ing ever since. Com­pare the step up in con­fi­dence and band inter­play on this new­er ver­sion of “Racist, Sex­ist Boy,” with which they close the set.

Before that The Lin­da Lin­das per­form songs from their new album Grow­ing Up, includ­ing the pop­py Span­ish bal­lad “Cuán­tas Veces”, the pop-punk “Talk­ing to Myself,” and the title track. The band’s lyrics are hon­est, absent pre­ten­sion, and while many of the con­cerns are uni­ver­sal, the album is def­i­nite­ly born out of COVID-era anx­i­ety. If you’re won­der­ing how these years are affect­ing those com­ing of age at this time, the album is essen­tial.

And, hey kids, there’s still avail­able (not on the live playlist but as a sin­gle on band­camp) “Nino,” a har­mo­ny-filled ode to their pet cat.

By the way, there aren’t many oth­er rock bands play­ing in libraries, but we did find one while search­ing the inter­tubes: it’s The Clash’s Mick Jones play­ing a solo elec­tric set of his hits. It’s just one more reminder to sup­port your local library—you nev­er know who might turn up.

Relat­ed Con­tent:

How the Riot Grrrl Move­ment Cre­at­ed a Rev­o­lu­tion in Rock & Punk

Fear of a Female Plan­et: Kim Gor­don (Son­ic Youth) on Why Rus­sia and the US Need a Pussy Riot

Judy!: 1993 Judith But­ler Fanzine Gives Us An Irrev­er­ent Punk-Rock Take on the Post-Struc­tural­ist Gen­der The­o­rist

Watch 450 NPR Tiny Desk Con­certs: Inti­mate Per­for­mances from The Pix­ies, Adele, Wilco, Yo-Yo Ma & Many More

Ted Mills is a free­lance writer on the arts who cur­rent­ly hosts the Notes from the Shed pod­cast and is the pro­duc­er of KCR­W’s Curi­ous Coast. You can also fol­low him on Twit­ter at @tedmills, and/or watch his films here.

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