Illuminati Hotties' Sarah Tudzin
Illuminati Hotties' Sarah Tudzin; Courtesy of Black Cat

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Illuminati Hotties at Black Cat

Not every artist making punk and garage rock has experience in a recording studio. But Sarah Tudzin—who has been releasing fast and distorted “tenderpunk” as Illuminati Hotties since 2018—has clearly got it. The producer, mixer, and audio engineer managed to make her band’s second LP, last year’s Let Me Do One More, sound like The Go-Go‘s collaborated with Bleachers. The production is impeccable, with Tudzin’s layered vocals giving songs like “Pool Hopping” and “MMMOOOAAAAAYAYA” a giant feel. Tudzin fills her spacious music with memorable lyrics. “If you’re not laughing, baby, then you’re not making money,” she sings on the latter, a song that gets its name from its catchy, gibberish chorus, and, in typical Tudzin genre-bending fashion, has a music video inspired by D’Angelo’s iconic “Untitled (How Does It Feel)” video. Let Me Do One More was released on indie label Hopeless Records, via Tudzin’s imprint Snack Shack Tracks. The label is known for releasing albums from punk mainstays like All Time Low and Sum 41. Their release of Tudzin’s latest work represents a professional milestone for the band. In an ideal world, an Illuminati Hotties show would be at a super small club, something no larger than DC9, and sold out. Instead, it’s at the slightly larger Black Cat. The good news for fans is that tickets are still available. Get them—Tudzin deserves a full house. Illuminati Hotties play Feb. 22 at 7:30 p.m. at Black Cat, 1811 14th St. NW. blackcatdc.com. $15–$18. Proof of vax and masks required.