Although Green Day is a great band, they pretty much lost their punk cred when they left the stages of Gilman for greener ($$$) pastures. Then there are bands like Mika Miko, four chicks and a dude from California's San Fernando Valley, who encapsulate the punk rock aesthetic the way it was meant to be: playing a million shows, touring in a cramped van and remaining the type of band who would rather "play at some kid's house for a birthday party in the valley and not get paid than play some rock club." Ah, god bless the DIY ethic.
Mika Miko's new album We Be Xuxa is snotty, bratty and abrasive in the best way possible. Their songs average only about two minutes in length (they probably think Radiohead are pretentious artheads with their complicated time signatures). You see, Mika Miko just doesn't see the point in complicating things, so they play loud, fast and hard, while Jennifer Clavin sings -- rather, yells -- urgently over fuzzed-out guitar riffs and bouncing bass lines. Their music is like a piece of bubblegum rolled around in dirt, and listening to songs like "Wild Boar" makes me regret I was never a teenage punk rocker. (Damn!)
Mika Miko is the antithesis to Miley Cyrus and the antidote to auto-tune overdose. Now, watch a live performance of Mika Miko at SXSW.