Columbus, OH, The Basement, August 11, 2009

 

Written and photos by: Jason Perlman

 

Sometimes, timing is everything. And it may not be truer than for melodic punktress Ida Maria. Hailing from Norway, Maria’s influences from Joan Jett to new pop-punk can be heard throughout her Island/Def Jam debut Fortress Round My Heart, which features once-again mainstream punker Iggy Pop. But with the influx of bad girl punkers led by Amy Winehouse, Maria could easily fall through the cracks before her raw talents could be showcased across the American airwaves.

 

It was The Basement that showcased Maria’s talents in Columbus, and for just over an hour, Maria and her band if misfits rocked the small venue and seemed to shake its very foundation on songs like her single, Oh My God. But where Maria really shines is her more intimate tunes like Morning Light. It was little surprise that most in attendance were there to hear her new female lib anthem I Like You So Much Better When Your Naked. With CD 101 blaring this song several times per day, it is no wonder that this song with its catchy beat and free-for-all attitude garners the most recognition from Maria. But Maria proved on the small stage with her head nearly pummeling the ceiling that this performer has way more to offer than a summertime one-hit wonder.

 

But again, timing is everything and with the success of Naked, those who are expecting more of the same from Maria may be pleasantly disappointed. Pleasantly because Maria brings several different sounds not just to the album, but to her live performance as well. From fast and furious to almost whiplash stops, Maria’s performance in Columbus was just as refreshing as her record. Where is seems most female leaders either take it to the sex-appeal extreme or anti sexy excessive, Maria seems to be comfortable with who she is as a performer and as a woman. With that confidence, it makes Naked an even better song as she proved it wasn’t just a catchy song that was to follow the teen-shock hit from Katy Perry (I Kissed A Girl) but rather real emotions from a woman who feels and expresses on many different levels.

 

If seeing a pop performer who is looking to follow suit of the punk-yet-preppy Perry or the out-of-control Winehouse is what someone is looking for, than they should glance over Maria. She is both of those but so much more in between. But with those extremes acquiring so much of the media attention, the timing of this individual could be lost in the influx of communal stereotype.

Ida Maria
Ida Maria