Review: Goth Babe & Yoke Lore Throw A Chill Party for the Salt Shed

At this point it’s pretty obvious: the Salt Shed is a phenomenal place to see a show. Their lineup this year has been stellar so far, adding quite of bit of diversity to the acts that grace the new venue’s stage. One night you’ll get rock or punk behemoths and the next you’ll get forlorn country acts or experimental ambient soundscapes. It’s always a treat and last week’s show with Goth Babe and Yoke Lore was another check in the win column for the indoor portion of Salt Shed’s rookie year!

When I spoke with a few members of the Salt Shed team before the show, they were surprised that such a big crowd had gathered for these more laidback sounds. But within seconds of Yoke Lore kicking things off, it’s obvious that the chill atmosphere was lined with an exuberant performance you’d expect from Adrian Galvin’s solo project. Joined by the adept drumming of Garren Orr, Galvin was frenetic as he jammed out these gentle but oh so energetic songs. It was a very evident theme of the night, hearing these very relaxed songs find their true potential on such a large stage. Galvin took full advantage of the moment, dancing and running around the stage, feeding off the fervor of the crowd with every passing moment.

Despite not having a full-length album out in the world, Griffin Washburn has one hell of a discography as Goth Babe. The project has been creating delightfully fuzzy earworms since 2015, evolving over the years by adding even more dreamy sounds to shoegazey beginnings. Washburn has amassed a hefty fanbase with a seemingly nonstop release of singles and EPs, many of which are compiled in their Goth Babe vinyl release. That fanbase was in full force at the Salt Shed, ready for one for the most genuinely wholesome and enjoyable evenings I’ve had in a while.

Emerging onstage to “New Born Worlds” before fully diving into “Moments/Tides”, Goth Babe was floating on air from the get-go. It’s hard not to get lost in their warm ethereal sound especially when it’s ramped up by Washburn’s charismatic stage presence and the Salt Shed massive soundsystem. The combination of the two only uplifted the tracks, catapulting them into true chill-out anthems. “I Wanna Help Your Mind” early on in the set really benefited from the atmosphere that was coming off stage and from the crowd (the inflatable with a fan crowd surfing certainly helped). It all burst forward with joy. There was no doubt that Goth Babe deserved to sell out Salt Shed.

The whole night was all about fun summery vibes that Goth Babe’s music strives for from the crowd-surfing cardboard cutout of Danny Devito during “Taking Over the Sun” (which Washburn asked the artist to be careful with and not rip off his limbs), the folks sitting atop of their friend’s shoulders, to the gentle swaying that had the crowd looking at calm waves at the beach side. And honestly what more could you ask for? Oh yeah, beach balls descending from the rafters and bouncing around in the latter half of the show. That was an added little cherry on top to all the fun antics going on.

The whole show was full of fan favorites like “Casaita” and “Canary Islands”, but with a band like Goth Babe it’s really hard to differentiate a deep cut from an all-time favorite. Washburn’s musical output is so damn consistent and engaging that even the least heard track of theirs will become one of your favorites. However there’s no denying the power of “Weekend Friend”, that night’s rightful final track. More than any other Goth Babe song, this is the one. The crowd soaked in every millisecond of the bright but melancholic melodies, taking as much in before we would all have to leave the magical world Goth Babe crafted that evening.

All photos by Julian Ramirez

Julian Ramirez
Julian Ramirez