Against Me!’s vocalist and founder, Tom Gabel, told Rolling Stone last month that he’d recently gone to a band meeting and informed his bandmates that he was in the process of becoming a woman. Tuesday at the Fillmore, the Florida-based quartet made its first local appearance since Gabel publicly disclosed his lifelong bout with gender dysphoria and began his transition from frontman to frontwoman. Absent the singer’s sex change, it was business as usual for the angst-rock combo.
Gabel also took on a new, more gender-appropriate name: Laura Jane Grace. Grace keeps her hair longer than Gabel kept his and wears heeled boots, earrings and nail polish. But her outfit was far butchier than anything the New York Dolls or Steven Tyler wore onstage in the early 1970s. And on tunes such as “I Was a Teenage Anarchist” and “Turn Those Clapping Hands Into Angry Balled Fists,” she sang/screamed with all the power and anger that Gabel flaunted.