Saturday night at Toast treated Norfolk to a taste of RVA’s vibrant music scene with longtime favorite Sammi Lanzetta and a duo from New York: Diet Cig.
Folks may remember that Lanzetta has graced our city previously with an appearance in her earlier band, Venus Guytrap. For the past year she’s been focusing her presentation more as a solo act. Lyrically she contains all the hallmarks of a storyteller. Her music contains a knowing, slightly world-weary soulfulness that at times recalls early Liz Phair, an edgier Sarah Harmer, or as a more contemporary reference point — something along the lines of Courtney Barnett. Her backing band is tight and diciplined, playing songs chock full of hooks with a character that Lanzetta herself refers to sheepishly as “Anxiety Rock.”
This week marks the close of successful multi-state tour on the strength of a recently released EP entiled, For Avery off of 6131 Records, with plans to begin work on a full album over the next year. We hope to see her again down our way soon.
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Diet Cig features an endearing partnership in the form of frontwoman Alex Luciano with Noah Bowman backing her on drums. Her songs are infectious and razor sharp fun. I don’t know how many folks out there remember Letters from Cleo, but I was strongly reminded of their lead singer — Kay Hanley, throughout this set. Luciano performs the kind of Pop-Punk that’s easy to adore. I didn’t get a chance to chat with her before racing off to the next show, but word through the grapevine is that they’ve been touring on the strength of a full record released back in April through Father/Daughter Records and has recently strengthened ties to Richmond.
There was plenty to love about all of this music, and one hopes for a speedy return of both groups to our parts. Kudos to Josh Coplon at LAVA for putting the show together!
All photography by Jeff Hewitt. Click here to follow him on Instagram.
Sammi Lanzetta Facebook
Diet Cig Facebook