I’ve been a longtime fan of Juliana Hatfield, going all the way back to her earliest days with the Blake Babies in Boston in the late ’80s or early ’90s. I remember seeing them open for another band (The Lemonheads? The Meat Puppets? Can’t quite remember . . . ) at The Channel, and a very young Juliana already had a notably awkward charisma going for her. It wasn’t too surprising to see her start her moderately successful solo career not too long after, which has had it highs and lows for many years now. Although I wouldn’t say that I follow her closely, I almost always find something to appreciate in each new release that comes along from her.
So when I heard about Hatfield’s new group, Some Girls, a trio that included former Blake Babies bandmate Freda Love, back in 2003, I was definitely intrigued to hear what she might do within the group setting again (although I admittedly hadn’t been overwhelmed by the Blake Babies’ reunion album a couple of years before). And I wasn’t disappointed — the Some Girls debut album, Feel It, is solid throughout, certainly enjoyable to any fan of Hatfield’s solo music, as she’s the primary songwriter and singer throughout. Not all the songs are totally memorable, but a number of them are cool rockers. The obvious choice for a single from the album is “The Prettiest Girl,” but my possible favorite is “Necessito,” which doesn’t seem to be about much more than how necessary music is (“Necessito la music” is the repeated phrase in the chorus). But it’s the song’s spare, slinky groove that makes it stand out, despite the fact that it never strays far from it. Its easygoing cool makes Some Girls seem like some girls you’d like to hang out and drink a few beers with.