Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Country the way it should be done

Artist: Georgiana Starlington
Title: Hard Grave 7"
Label: Army of Bad Luck
Release date: 2009
Release number: ABL 012
Vinyl color: Gold

While Jack Hines' former bandmates will have a gospel album with King Khan hitting the streets this fall, the ex-Black Lip and former Atlantan Julie Elledge have already teamed to release a county and western single produced by Khan at Moon Studios.

The title track is a nod to the early country music sung beautifully by Elledge. That's right, this is not alt- or pop- or anything else with a hyphen country. This is honest, from the soul country and western music, and if your mind is open to this type of music you'll likely dig this band.

The second track, "Comin' Down", is a mellow song fronted by Hines, with Elledge providing backup vocals.

B-side opener "Ode to Love" is a cover played in a spaghetti western style. The only thing that would have made this better would have been if Marco Pirroni had shown up at Moon Studios with his guitar.

"Cowboy Lullaby" closes this release, and this instrumental track sounds like, well, a lullaby ready to whisk its listeners off to sleep.

Hollow Stars debut adds to already impressive resume

Artist: Hollow Stars
Title: Self-titled 7"
Label: Army of Bad Luck
Release date: 2008
Release number: ABL 010
Vinyl color: Clear

Good live band? Check. Local talent from already established bands teaming to crank out something totally different? Check. A connection to one of Atlanta's best exports? Check. Tour experience with the likes of King Khan and BBQ? Check. An awesome debut? Check.

That's a succinct yet thorough description of Hollow Stars, a local indie band fronted by former Deerhunter guitarist Colin Mee and featuring members of Knife and the 4th Ward Daggers and criminally underrated and now defunct Vera Fang.

On "Only Your Love," the a-side to the band's Army of Bad Luck debut, Mee's vocals emerge over the slightly distored indie rock equivalent of the wall of sound. The b-side, "In Herald Dreams We Wither," showcases tight musicians on the verge of rocking out like Colin's other band, Chopper, but they keep things reigned in just enough to keep from speeding past soft, deliberate vocals.

The 7", like most Army of Bad Luck releases, comes with a CDR with two bonus songs, including a ambient, synth-enhanced trip to a prog-rock dreamworld and totally different, guitar-heavy tune with distorted vocals.

Check out this still in print record, which is available from the new Army of Bad Luck website.

G.G. King in its rawest form

Artist: G.G. King
Title: Last of the Night Wiggers Ruff Demo cassette
Label: Self-released
Release date: Spring 2009

Note: This is that post dedicated to the now 30-year-old Sony Walkman I promised weeks ago, as this is a cassette tape.

G.G. King, Greg King's post-Carbonas project, had its second 7", Drug Zoo, released this week's by Rob's House, and on this cassette you can hear the songs from the single plus three other tracks in their rawest form.

The title track of the new single is the highlight, as it is a song that is catchy while managing to really say something about how sometimes a person's reliance on drugs can inadvertently become a public spectacle.

"Witching Hour," another track on the 7", has a barely decipherable chantalong part at the end that'll remind you of the Ramones and make you realize you've heard the band play this one live several times. The rest of the song is a keeper, too, as it's a definite nod to The Zero Boys, Dow Jones and the Industrials, and some of the other classic American punk bands that influenced the Carbonas and, to a lesser extent, Quadiliacha.

"The Letter," a cover of a Box Tops classic, has been in G.G. King's live set since show one back in February. As the band has improved, this cover while played live has gone from being one of those amusing, sloppy punk rock attempts at covering a song without totally shitting all over it to being a worthy nod to a classic. This recording is on par with those worthy nods the band has recently performed live.

This song also has a vague link to Greg's past. Alex Chilton of the Box Tops was also in Big Star, whose song "September Gurls" was covered on the second Carbonas album.

The cassette also features three unreleased punk scorchers with "Babbling Voices", "Head in the Clouds," and the tormented laughs "Flowing Robes."

Musically and vocally, these songs distance G.G. King from The Carbonas sound. The first 7" was similar to The Carbonas (especially the before-mentioned second album), but these tracks show a whole different direction for King.

Atlanta soul legends to perform at Highland Inn

I can't say I'm familiar with George Hughley's work, but I dig what I've heard of Hitson. Friday also happens to be The Mighty Hannibal's 70th birthday, which he will celebrate by performing in New York.

News and Notes

• You can now preorder a four-way split 7" featuring Crocodiles, Dum Dum Girls (expect me to praise her work shortly), Pens, and Graffiti Island from www.artfag.us.
• Facehugger is playing 529 tomorrow night for only $3. Paul and John will DJ afterwards.
• GG King's Drug Zoo 7" is now available from Rob's House Records. They also still have copies of The Customers 7" and Bobby Ubangi's solo LP.
• Davila 666 from Puerto Rico is playing with GG King and Gentleman Jesse Saturday at The Earl.
• 7 Inch Atlanta has not covered a show in over a week, and that hiatus will sadly continue until August 14. In the meantime, check the site for 7" reviews, including a look at the Army of Bad Luck catalog.

Monday, July 27, 2009

Preview of Jay Reatard short film

TRAILER: "Waiting For Something", a Jay Reatard documentary
On Tuesday August 4th MySpace will debut "Waiting For Something", a short documentary about Jay Reatard. Directed by Alex Hammond and Ian Markiewicz, "Waiting For Something" explores in detail Jay's personal history and his roots in Memphis music, and also gazes forward at a artistic journey not yet written. Here is the first trailer for the film.

Sunday, July 26, 2009

Hardcore galore

Bukkake Boys just posted these shows, including their final appearances before their singer Ruby leaves the states for several months, on MySpace. Watch as the lone Atlanta band that plays out more often than Predator performs with Predator. Also check out Doomed Youth, who are coming off a lengthy tour, and recently reformed American Cheeseburger.

July 30th @ wonder root
Bukkake Boys(last show for a very long time)
Predator
Brainkiller(raw HC on deranged sounds like discharge and infest had a baby)
Doomed youth
Die ficken
$7 starts at 7PM

August 2nd @ footklan headquarters warehouse of holtzclaw(turn left onto to holtzclaw of memorial warehouse complex is on the left)

Guilty faces(HC punk from CT on deranged)
Bad antics(HC from CA)
Bukkake boys(last show for a long time)
More TBA..
$7 2PM(show will start early!)

Sept 7th @ 585 Wells st warehouse
American cheeseburger(athens thrash/HC)
Weekend Nachos(heavy ass raging power violence from chicago)
Doomed youth
Die ficken
One more TBA
$7 8PM

7 Inch Atlanta's best songs (so far) of 2009

It seems to be "Best Of (So Far)" list season, so 7 Inch Atlanta might as well throw its hat in the ring. No real surprises here, and it's not too biased as The Customers, Barreracudas and Poison Arrows are 7 Inch Atlanta favorites and they failed to make the cut.

10. "In Your Street Today" by The Stalkers- Here's yet another slice of old-fashioned rock and roll by a good band that's great live thanks to charismatic frontman Andy Animal.

9. "Chicane" by Ex-Humans- Here's a punk band for those of you who hate new punk bands. The Brooklyn-based trio rips through this bitter tune about a girl in a little over two minutes. Its b-side is a keeper, too.

8. "Drug Zoo" by G.G. King- If "Adult Rock" and its flipside did not convince you that Greg King is doing more than carrying on the Carbonas sound with his new band, this tune from the "Last of the Night Wiggers" (blame the name on a bad Black Lips idea that was axed, not the reviewer) demo cassette and an upcoming Rob's House single will make you think otherwise. Click on the song title to hear this one, courtesy of Creative Loafing.

7. "Drugs" by The Black Lips- While their newest album may not flow like the mighty Good Bad Not Evil, it has some great songs, like this brief garage-glam tune that, like The Black Lips' best song, is about juvenile delinquents.

6. "Moped Girls" by Vivian Girls- The latest Vivian Girls offering sounds like most of their back catalog, and that's a good thing. If it ain't broke, don't fix it.

5. "Heart Collector" by The Stolen Hearts- Folks who were expecting a Babyshakes ripoff have been pleasantly surprised by this new Atlanta band, as they have already put out a surprisingly great single highlighted by this warning about a no-good heart breaking girl.

4. "Greaser's Lament" by Bobby Ubangi- The late, great Bobby Ubangi's final 7" release included this, a lightning-quick garage rocker penned by the creative mind behind The Lids.

3. "Beat The Rush" by Mika Miko- Any song from Mika Miko's We Be Xuxa would not have been out of place on this list (save "Wild Bore" and "Sex Jazz," which technically are not new new new), as there is not a gelding in the bunch, but this track displays the dueling vocalists and array of musical influences that make this band one to watch.

2. "Bury Me" by The Coathangers- Scramble also provided a wealth of possibilities for this list, and this catchy tune has it all-- Stephanie's gruff vocals seemingly burying Candice's assertion that the girls cannot be intimidated and Julia's "oh oh ohhh" calls.

1. "What Love Is For" by Plexi 3- Pulling off the upset is a B-side that's not even sung by the band's lead singer. Adam, Plexi 3's bass player, wrote and sings this Monkees-inspired tune, while Wendy Norton's familiar voice provides backup vocals.

Saturday, July 25, 2009

Athens musician plans potential best dance party of the summer

Nate from Cars Can Be Blue has a huge dance party planned tomorrow night in Athens at Ben's Bikes function room (670 Broad St. across from Vision Video). There is no cover, and the event is expected to last from 9 p.m. to 2 a.m.

The event, which has gotten some local coverage by Flagpole, will feature local DJs playing an ecclectic mix of dance tunes from different eras, kegs, and the return of Everybody Everybody, a band featuring Nate and Vanillan Extract vocalist Melissa.

Here's more nitty-gritty details provided by Nate:

ALL NIGHT DANCE PARTY with:
DJ Other Voices Other Rooms
DJ Mahogany
Kurt Wood
Chris Ingham

LIGHTS, VIDEO and PROJECTIONS by:
Sabrina Cuadra (Whistling School for Boys)
Ray Burg (Eye Gate Lightshow)
Ash Somebody (last video show before moving to NYC)
Michael Lachowski (bassist for Pylon)

Free EP by Atlanta transplant

Artist: Adron
Title: Burdwurld EP
Label: Self-released
Release date: July 2009

Here's something that's different, and free, from former Atlantan Adron, a five-song digital EP that sounds like it was recorded by a minstrel from a faraway dream world.

Songs like "Little Face" and "Renegade" are beautifully-written and sung indie-rock tunes recorded by yet another Brooklyn via Atlanta artist. She's an artist in every sense of the word, as her website features a free download of this EP plus a few glimpses at her artwork.

Check it out. You've got nothing to lose and a love for Adron and what she calls "healthy, melodic tropical music and pictures" to gain.

Friday, July 24, 2009

It should be a glamorous night

The Greatest Hits will be in town tonight at The Star Bar, and they are bringing Vancouver's Pretty Vanilla with them. If glammerpop is not your thing, Ruby Velle and the Soulphonics will perform upstairs.

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Coathangers made triumphant return

The Coathangers made their triumphant return to an Atlanta stage last Wednesday at The Earl along with Can Can and Judi Chicago.

The show started at a decent hour, so I totally missed out on Can Can. Lots of folks must have missed them flexing their indie-rock muscles, as the crowd was sparse when I arrived not long after 10 p.m.

Judi Chicago played next, and they played danceable (and instantly disposable) tunes. Much to the delight of the crowd and The Coathangers, they covered "Tonya Harding." It was silly, but that was probably by design. Several Coathangers tackled vocals on this cover, making it seem like a remix of the original. Stephanie declared this live remix was better than the original. Good job, Judi Chicago, even if you are less interesting than sister band Noot 'D Noot.

Once the last Judi Chicago song ended (whether it would was briefly in question), The Coathangers closed out the night with a sloppier than usual yet infectiously fun as always set. There were no balloons or out-of-season party favors this time. Outside of a below-par performance of "Wreckless Boy," the band did well, as their current live set never gets old.
Since the festivities at The Earl wrapped up not long after midnight, the crowd was able to head over to 529 to see G.G. King perform and, more importantly, the Pillow Talk DJs in bikinis.

Photos courtesy of Kevin Twitch

Army of Bad Luck launches website

Army of Bad Luck now has a website for its growing catalog of releases which includes new LPs by Austin's Finally Punk and Atlanta's Hawks.

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

New "Pussywillow" video

Here's another indieATL gem starring The Coathangers. Is Julia not the most talented of the four when it's instrument-switching time?

A review of last Wednesday's show at The Earl and pictures are coming your way soon.

Monday, July 20, 2009

News on the Love City EP


Remember Philadelphia garage rockers Love City coming through town when The Stalkers and Exhumans were here back in March? Well, here's some news on their first proper release:

ARTIST: Love City
TITLE: "I Can't Stop" EP
FORMAT: 7" EP and bonus CD
RELEASE NUMBER: CPR008
RELEASE DATE: August 10, 2009


Certified PR Records is proud to announce our new release is the debut 7"EP/CD by Philadelphia's Love City!
If you dig organ driven, psychedelic punk rock madness you won't want to miss this great record...
Love City's amazing sound is their unique interpretation of the Back From The Grave comps., early 70's rock and even some punk influences.
Check out a preview track: http://www.myspace.com/certifiedpr
These guys (and girl) have shared the stage with nearly every good band to pass through Philly in the last year... King Khan/BBQ show, Nobunny, Reigning Sound, Thomas Function, Pierced Arrows, Detroit Cobras, Okmoniks and many many more!

LIMITED EDITION RED VINYL PREORDER:
Like previous Certified PR vinyl releases, the first 100 records will be on colored vinyl (RED) and will come packaged in an alternative picture sleeve.... Yes , the limited edition orders will include the bonus CD.

Prices:
United States - $6.50 ppd
International - $10.00 ppd

Contact for wholesale rates...

Emails and paypal to: thickbootyhos@yahoo.com

Coming soon:
CPR009 - The People's Temple "You Don't Know" 7" EP (September 2009)
CPR010 - John Wesley Coleman "Steal My Mind" LP (September 2009)
Coming later:
CPR011 - Tokyo Electron "AZ238" LP (October 2009)

Last second show announcement

Personal and the Pizzas are playing tonight at The Earl with The Coconut Coolouts and Barreracudas.

Sunday, July 19, 2009

Trashbin Alley Rock is better than average glam-inspired punk

Artist: The Greatest Hits
Title: For A Good Time, Call...
Label: Desert Island Discs
Release date: 2008

With their first release, The Greatest Hits were setting themselves apart from the many comparable bands you can find on the West Coast, save the absolute best like The Cute Lepers.

The first line of the album is lifted from Buddy Holly, but after that a fresh nod to some old influences is on display, as this is more than just another rock album with a provocative cover.

"Drowning Faith Sorrow" is the best example of what all this band does right, as this celebration of bromance rages on for six minutes but still stays fresh with backup vocals and an organist layered under Nils Forever's vocals. The band outdoes themselves on this one with lines like, "Nailed to the cross section of a broken life," which is a definite step ahead of typical glammerpop lyrics.

Other strongpoints include old-style rocker "Shakes and Licks," soft side showing "Crying Poem," mandatory early punk nod "Terminal Sleaze," anthem for the kids "If Rock Hadn't Saved Me," and the memorable guitar work on "So Untrue."

What sets this band apart? Well, they had solid guitar playing on this release, and it predates Leif Pacemaker joining the band. Also, Nils Forever actually sounds like a man and does not go overboard with "owwwww"s and other cliched frontman catcalls.

These guys are worth checking out this Friday at The Star Bar with Canadian glam-punks Pretty Vanilla.

Friday, July 17, 2009

DLP shines at rawk show

Derek Lyn Plastic returned to the stage with a new drummer and played to a totally different audience Thursday at The Star Bar's free Big Touble in Little 5 Points show.

The show was headlined by Dropsonic, who have been around for years, and also featured a long-winded touring band called Tent Revival.

The touring rawkers started the show with a set that seemingly was never going to end. Maybe they are called Tent Revival because if all bands were that dull, we'd cave in and believe our grandmothers when they say rock and roll is a tool of the devil and start going to church as there would be no point in frequenting places like The Star Bar because Sunday School would be more interesting.

All rudeness aside, Tent Revival really did play at least 40 minutes. It was like that obnoxious Wreckless Eric show from last year all over again. I'd rather see Wreckless Eric, though, as at least he says funny stuff in between songs. Though the crowd was into it, I do have to wonder why the sound man did not cut them off after about half an hour.

DLP made up for that sloppy 529 show from last month by being spot-on during their first two songs, as new drummer Darren (from Ponderosa), bass player Matt and second guitarist Warren fit what Derek is trying to do with his new batch of songs. When the guitar stap on Derek's guitar came loose, he put down the guitar and reverted to charismatic frontman mode. He did this well enough that it seemed contrived and not like an honest fuck-up.

A few other hiccups occurred later in the set, but that's a punk band for you. I was a little worried the rock and roll crowd would shit all over Derek's brand of punk rock, but outside a girl standing near me who let out an "uuuuhhhhh!" every time the band had to re-start a song and the guy who was flipping a bird as he exited the venue, everyone seemed to be tolerant. If only four or five of the 70 or 80 new pairs of ears will be interested in DLP's upcoming LP, then the band had a successful night.

Dropsonic did not go on until about 1 a.m., but they still seemed to delight the crowd that was willing to stick it out on a work night.

Thursday, July 16, 2009

Free DLP

I worded that as if he's behind bars.

DLP and Trashcans news

Derek Lyn Plastic and their new drummer will perform a free Big Trouble in Little 5 show with Dropsonic tonight at the Star Bar. DLP has not played out much this year, and here's your chance to see them free.

Also on deck are these shows Nate just mentioned on MySpace:
FRI. JULY 17TH
at the Go Bar (Athens, GA)
9 pm-ish

the TRASHCANS - supercharged rock-n-roll oblivian so childish and woggly, it will leave you mummified! I play the drums with reckless abandon!

The MATT KURZ ONE - a living legend...he plays five instruments at once! Jesus fucking Christ on a crutch!

PINCHE GRINGO - dirty blues-stompin' good times from Greensboro, NC's seventh son. It don't get real-er than this...guitar with the hands, drums with the feet, passion from the soul AND you can dance to it.

ROUGH HANDS - primitive sounds from Carolina made good like sloppy BBQ.

Come on out and bring some cash for the touring folks.
thanky kindly.

KNOEL and the SS (Nate, Alex, and Jack from The Trashcans plus Pinche Gringo) will perform with Thee Crucials Saturday afternoon at Criminal Records.

ALSO...
Trashcans, Pinche & Rough Hands perform in Atlanta @ Star Bar on Sat. July the 18th as part of Fringe Binge with a shit-ton of awesome bands.

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Can Can cranks out minimalist rockers about Judiasm, scriptures

Artist: Can Can
Title: All Hell
Label: Stickfigure Distro
Release date: 2008

Can Can's debut CD, All Hell, mixes post-punk minimalism and with lyrics ripped from the Old Testament and Judaism belted out by Patrick A., the band's charismatic frontman.

All 11 songs are keepers, as fantastic metal-quality drumming from Josh Lamar and Mary Frances Collins' alt-rock riffs and shoegazingly soft backup vocals complement Patrick's voice which, depending on the mood of the song, ranges from spooky whispers ("Coaxed") to righteous shouts ("Widowmaker," which is easily the best song on the album).

On several songs, the band culled lyrics from the Old Testament, with "Locked In" being the obvious example. Regardless of your personal beliefs, you've got to admit the Bible has provided quality material to pop songwriters for years, and Can Can's embracing of scripture is no exception.

Each song begins with Lamar's steady drumming, and the opening of "Future Self" surprisingly sounds a little like a typical Motorhead song. The tribal drumming on the opening of "In Like A Lion/Out Like A Lamb", is also noteworthy, though the song quickly evolves into an alt.-rock song.

This young Atlanta band is willing to tour extensively and put a lot of effort into promoting themselves, so expect to hear plenty from them in the coming years.

Can Can is playing tomorrow night with The Coathangers and Judi Chicago at The Earl. Tickets are $8. Doors open around 9.

Monday, July 13, 2009

News and notes


• The Slinters, who until Aug. 1 when their single comes out will be the best band in our little world without a proper record release, played their third show with The Coathangers recently in San Francisco, and there's some footage of it at SPIN Earth. If you like what you hear, go over to Myspace and ask The Splinters if they can figure out a way to make it to Atlanta or Athens or Birmingham.

• This will be a stacked week when it comes to good shows. Abby Go-Go and The Balkans are playing tonight at 529. The before-mentioned Coathangers will play Wednesday at The Earl with Can Can and Judi Chicago to celebrate their return from a lengthy tour that took them to Canada and back. That same night, G.G. King will have their 7" release party at 529. Thursday's free Star Bar show will feature Derek Lyn Plastic and Dropsonic. The main event, though, will be the third annual Fringe Binge festival this Friday and Saturday, featuring Paul Collins' Beat on the closing night.

• The next few 7 Inch Atlanta updates will be in honor of the Sony WalkMan, which turned 30 earlier this month.

Jesse, Josh, and Dave play a Carbonas cover

I'm at work now, so I have no idea what the sound quality is like. It must have been great live, as Adrian Barrera appears to be having a blast.

Friday, July 10, 2009

The Hussy and their unique friends split a 7"

Artist: Sleeping in the Aviary/ The Hussy
Title: Split 7"
Label: Science of Sound
Release Date: 2009

The Hussy, a 7 Inch Atlanta favorite from Madison, made their vinyl debut with this split with hometown oddballs Sleeping in the Aviary.

A second Madison band, Sleeping in the Aviary, is a nice suprise here, as they play cooky guitar rock for the internet humor generation. Their side of vinyl begins with "Automatic (For Krol)," which builds tension until its explosive "It's all in the boat you row" end. The second song, "Radio Wave," has a Pixies vibe to it, and it apparently tells the story of the mangled bride on the cover. Speaking of the cover, does it not look like a standard Derek Lyn Plastic cut, paste and catch a ride to Kinko's concert poster?

This Sleeping in the Aviary crew has some free songs on their website, if you do not mind navigating past lots of nightmare-inducing photos of Teri Hatcher, dogs, and puppets. They are also coming to town in August to play 529 with It's Elephants.

The Hussy offered three songs from their first batch of demos I reviewed recently for their side of vinyl. "One Time", "I Got Soul", and "Snakes" sound even better on vinyl.

Every 7 Inch Atlanta favorite should do a split with a band I'm not familiar with, as that makes finding unique, new music hassle-free. If Sleeping in the Aviary is anything, it's unique. They have a barroom singalong tune called "Dick Gere," for crying out loud.

Jacuzzi Boys repress is hopefully a preview of upcoming LP

Artist: The Jacuzzi Boys
Title: Island Avenue
Label: Hozac Records
Release date: Repressed in 2008 or 2009
Vinyl color: Green

This recently repressed 7" is reason to believe The Jacuzzi Boys' upcoming Florida's Dying LP will be worth several spins, and it will make you hope they make another Atlanta stop when it's time to promote the album.

The title track is one-half a mid-tempo, bluesy song that's very southern in a respectable way and one-half a head-bobbing, clap-along psychedelic nostalgia trip. That's a good mix, to say the least. This one features a second guitarist, and it stays away from too much vocal distortion, so Gabriel's distinct voice comes through loud and clear.

On "Dream Lion pt. 1," The Jacuzzi Boys become slower and mellower and go from playing clap-along to snap-along rock and roll. Where else will you hear "Get down!" followed by much, much less than a campy faux-Johnny Thunders solo?

The 7" ends with "You Should Know," which is a dancealong beach party version of the Jacuzzi Boys' sound.

Though these guys are pretty much honorary Atlantans at this stage, after a few spins of this record you'll wish they were locals you could go see at 529 or The Star Bar on any given Wednesday.

Thursday, July 9, 2009

Wreckless Eric returns

The Star Bar's website says Wreckless Eric and his girlfriend, Amy Rigby, will be back tomorrow night. If you did not see him the last time he was in town, check him out so you can say you saw a Stiff Records original in an intimate setting. If you did see him when he performed before, you likely have had a bellyful of the Wreckless one and songs about men having ugly feet already.

The site also advertises Gentleman Jesse acoustic. I'm not sure if this will be Jesse and a guitar, kind of like Derek Lyn Plastic's solo performance the last time Wreckless Eric was in town, or if His Men are also going unplugged.

Wednesday, July 8, 2009

Stalkers, garage legends pair up to cover the Stones

Artist: The Stalkers/The Alarm Clocks
Title: Take It Or Leave It/The Last Time (Rolling Stones covers)
Label: Norton Records

This Norton release, one of several split singles featuring Rolling Stones covers, pairs a new band from Brooklyn, Atlanta's sister city when it comes to rock and roll, with American garage rock legends.

The Stalkers handle "Take It Or Leave It," and both Andy Animal's voice and the soothing organ part makes this cover of a 1966 Stones classic downright mellow. This by no means is a poorly done nod to the Stones, but I would still rather hear my favorite Brooklynites' original material.

The Alarm Clocks are garage rock legends from Ohio, and they provided a cover of a more familiar tune in "The Last Time." It's a well-played, no frills take on the original, and it's a real treat to hear this because The Alarm Clocks were not around long the first time around and to date have only recorded two albums (Yeah and Time Has Come).

This set of 19 singles is still widely available and includes Stones covers by bands like King Khan and BBQ Show, Demon's Claws, The Black Lips, The Seeds, and Question Mark and The Mysterians. Check them out at Norton Records' website.

More than just three chords and a hook

Artist: Bobby Ubangi
Title: Another Girl Like You
Label: Douchemaster Records
Release date: April 28, 2009
Vinyl color: First 100 on blue marble vinyl

On this, the second of three solo releases by Bobby Ubangi, one of Atlanta's finest songwriters of the past decade went a step beyond just three chords and a hook and partnered with some friends for three well-constructed songs.

The title track has Ubangi singing and strumming as expected, but he also plays organ to make this a little more complex than the typical Lids song. Paul McPherson provides drums for this, a standard lament about a girl who is just too much for a sane man to take.

The flipside starts with a real gem, "Greasers Lament." This one starts with a second or two of living room chatter before it launches into a should-be classic to folks who love lo-fi garage rock. Will Greene, another Atlanta mainstay, drums, plays lead guitar and provides backup vocals, as this and the full-length are made possible friends who stopped by Ubangi's house and helped him make the songs in his head a reality.

"Back to You" has that Ramones gone acoustic appeal Ubangi captured on his split Rob's House 7" with Personal and The Pizzas plus a slight hint of surf guitar.

Two new LP releases from Atlanta labels

Here's a pair of from Austin, Tx. bands with new releases from Atlanta labels.
Army of Bad Luck has released a new Finally Punk LP called Casual Goths. Don't let the title scare you, as this should be a good one, as it includes 26 tracks from the band's three previous 7"s and two previously unreleased songs. Order soon, and you might get purple vinyl. As always, this ABL release comes with a CD-R.


Douchemaster announced today it will co-release Hex Dispenser's second LP, Winchester Mystery House, July 14 with Red Devil Records.

According to the Douchemaster blog, you can type UBANGI in the section of the Paypal checkout titled "seller instructions" when you preorder the Hex Dispensers record if you would like to receive a free copy of the Another Girl Like You 7".

The best free show lineup I've seen in a while


The N.E.C., a good choice for best art-punk act in Creative Loafing's ongoing Best of 2009 contest, will likely headline this show which also features out of town garage rockers Bass Drum of Death, The Electric Cycles, Knife and the 4th Ward Daggers, and, believe it or not, surf rockers El Capitan and Thee Scallywags. This is better on paper than anything else this week you'd have to pay to attend (well, other than Abe Vigoda this Saturday at 529).

Monday, July 6, 2009

Carbonas end on a high note at Ubangi benefit

One of this decade's best Atlanta bands and three of the best new bands on the scene celebrated the memory of B. Jay Womack Saturday while raising funds for his burial, as The Carbonas headlined an all-day 4th of July festival at 529.

Before the show kicked off, Warren and Mark grilled out and several folks, including trash-talking Jeff Clark from Stomp N Stammer, took turns sitting in the dunk booth. The dunk booth was probably the best attraction at the carnival, and it was made even more amusing by Tuk's comedic play-by-play. The early festivities drew a nice crowd, which continued to grow until it was time for the first band to take the stage.

The Barreracudas opened, and they are The Hiss with a new sense of direction, so you can't go long there. They played songs from their debut Douchemaster 7" and also that wacky tune about chomping on dog biscuits and Alpo.

Chatting with the growing crowd caused me to accidentally miss almost all of The Customers set, but what I did hear was on par with the quality they bring live and brought to the studio when they recorded their debut 7".

Predator was awesome, and the sooner their anticipated debut LP is on my turntable, the better. They need to record their current batch of songs if they haven't already and hit the road again. ASAP.

The main event was The Carbonas, who likely played their last show until at least next summer. They played a long set with songs culled from all of their albums, including a tune from Scene Killers that was penned by B. Jay. Jeremy took the stage and gave Chris Van Etten a breather about halfway through the set, which was a nice surprise. The crowd was totally into it from the first chord until the end of "Frothing At the Mouth," as it was the rowdiest Atlanta crowd I had seen since The Carbonas played The Mess Around at The Earl last fall. Quality-wise, Saturday was the second best Atlanta performance by The Carbonas of the past couple of years, with the before-mentioned Mess Around set being their best by far. If Atlanta does not get to see these guys play together again, they left us on a strong note.

Sunday, July 5, 2009

Zoroaster, Spooks, raise money for WRAS

A sizable crowd, presumably of students, came out Friday for the annual WRAS benefit, which was headlined by local heavy metal heroes Zoroaster and super scary supergroup The Spooks.

I came in too late to catch Danger Woman, a local singing superhero. There's a movie about her in the works, according to this Web site. Even if her act looks a bit silly to some, she must be really into what she's trying to achieve, as the lady was outside schilling $1 stickers as if she was possessed by Don West when I arrived.

Thy Mighty Contract were already playing once I made it inside Eyedrum, and it took no time for me to regret missing their first couple of songs. Several familiar faces, including Erin from SIDS, backed a diminutive singer who belted lyrics into a phone, which of course is reminiscent of Mika Miko. If you dig local artsy bands like SIDS or The Orphans, do yourself a huge favor and check out Thy Mighty Contract.

The Spooks made a rare appearance next, and they had a special guest. Jared Swilley had a prior commitment, so the band was joined by guest bassist Bradford Cox. Their short set, made up mostly of songs from their long-anticipated LP, was sloppy and fun, as a side project based on the concept of channelling the spirits of cowboys and other riff-raffs should be. The closer, "Now I'm a Spook," ended with a lengthy jam session that worked better than it should have thanks to the drumming of local mainstay Adam Bruneau. The set was also memorable because Cole Alexander and Joe Bradley always bust out wacky on-stage antics whenever they don the white sheets.

Closing the night was Zoroaster, and even a non-metal fan like myself can tell you these guys have their shit together. They a tight, professional unit that is worlds ahead of the typical Atlanta heavy-rocking bar band. It was loud, exciting, and seemed oh too brief, even though I prefer 2:59 or less pop songs.

By the end of the night, three awesome bands had helped raise funds for the best college radio station in town.

Saturday, July 4, 2009

Independence Day Bash for Bobby Ubangi

Four of Atlanta's best bands will raise funds for B Jay Womack's burial tonight, as Barreracudas, Predator, The Customers, and The Carbonas are playing at 529. Beforehand, an outdoor barbecue will be held in the parking lot featuring a dunk tank and carnival games. I'd venture to say the outdoor stuff wil begin arounf 4 p.m.

Friday, July 3, 2009

Six totally different bands play mixed bag of a show a Lenny's

While most local show goers were celebrating the life and times of Bobby Ubangi Wednesday at The Drunken Unicorn, a small handful witnessed a six-band bill at Lenny's.

Hotel Parallel, which is John and Kasey from Hip to Death performing as a post-psychedelic two-piece, opened. It was their first show, and they went all out, surrounding themselves by televisions which all showed static except for one that showed Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas. Musically, it was part experimental, part psychedelic, and part grunge. John belted out the lyrics and Kasey played tambourine along with pre-taped music and samples (played off a CD that skipped a time or two). Overall, it was very different yet rewarding.

Two bands who were somehow booked separately by the venue played along with four of the advertised bands. One of those bands, The Red Cliche, musically depict what the term "pop-punk" started to mean about 10 years ago. That is to say, their drivel sounded more like New Found Glory than something cool like The Queers or The Vandals 2.0. At least when their music is featured on The Hills the other bands on the bill can gloat about playing with them when they were unknown.

The Trashcans commandeered the stage next and played a short but sweet set of garage punk. It's a shame more people did not hear them, as four shows in they are almost on par with The Barberries, who only one summer ago put out a good single and went on to host rowdy house shows.

The Liar Birds from Minneapolis were the second unadvertised band, and they were worlds better than The Red Cliche. They played a similar style, but it was louder, faster, and, based on their CD, more creative. They won't make you want to listen to modern pop-punk, but they still make a suitable second or third band on the bill.

This strange brew of a show was salvaged next, as The North Trolls put on an awesome set. They are a much better mix of pop and punk than anything else on the bill, and they are very southern (and not in a lame cowboy hat and belt buckle way). They closed with "When I Get Home," which their Myspace page serves up as a small taste of awesomeness. Here's hoping they get to play to a larger Atlanta audience soon, so you all can join in my excitement for their upcoming split 7" with Wrister.

Closing was Skank Juice, a group of youngsters who play no frills (or trumpets) ska. They, too, deserve a larger local audience for their Choking Victim covers and clever originals, as they are talented musicians and Amanda, their lead singer, has a great voice once she cuts loose and overcomes her stage fright. If she got a few pointers from Jessica Juggz and both Mika Miko lead singers, she'd almost be on their level as performers. She can already match them as a vocalist.

Thursday, July 2, 2009

Customers rock like Replacements with new single

Artist: The Customers
Title: Howling At The Moon
Label: Rob's House Records
Release date: June 2009

The Customers, just like fellow new Atlanta bands The Stolen Hearts, Barreracudas, and G.G. King, are a group of familiar faces who have wasted no time putting out a quality debut single.

As the sticker on the cover implies, The Customers is a product of three Atlanta bands from yesteryear parting ways, as Chris Van Etten from The Carbonas plays bass, former Heart Attacks drummer Brad Goocher is behind the kit, and Stephen Hutton from Beat Beat Beat provides unique vocals and penned the lyrics for this debut single. The fourth Customer, Travis, is Tuk's younger brother, and he holds his own with his more seasoned bandmates.

"Howling At The Moon" is pretty straightforward rock and roll modeled after The Replacements (Sorry Ma era) and driven by Travis' riffs and Stephen's raspy vocals.

On "She's Heroin," Travis and Stephen's intertwining voices and guitars garner more Replacements comparisons. That comparison almost seems too easy, though a new band bottling even a few drops of the formula that made Minnesota's finest so great on songs like, say, "Customer," surely is everything but easy.

"Monster on the Loose" maintains the a-side's quality, as the skills of Brad, the best drummer The Heart Attacks ever had, comes to the forefront of a song that is loud and fast without being sloppy and on the verge of imploding.

The band wasted no time hitting the studio, as they recorded this with Randy Michael early this year around the time they started playing out live. Here's hoping they waste no time hooking up with Randy again for more Replacements-style rockers about the monsters and demons in everyday life.

Some clips of B Jay shot by the We Fun folks



This is part touching, part funny.

Video from last night's benefit for BJ

r.i.p. bj from rob downs on Vimeo.


Cole and Joe receive an assist from Bradford Cox and Will Greene as they perform in spite of the emotional circumstances.

RIP Bobby Ubangi

Benjamin Jay Womack, a founding member of the Carbonas and Lids, lost his battle with cancer last night. A previously scheduled benefit Saturday featuring The Carbonas, Barreracudas, Predator, and The Customers will raise money for BJ's burial fund.

I did not meet BJ until last fall, and I cannot claim I knew him well, but he was always kind to me, complementary of my reviews, and willing to offer me a couch to sleep on if I was in no shape to drive back to Douglasville.

Wednesday, July 1, 2009

Even more Black Lips (plus Mark Naumann and Adam Bruneau)

Random notes

• The Star Bar's Web site now lists the lineups for both days of the Fringe Binge, July 17-18. The opening night will feature locals The Poison Arrows (assuming they are not going by a different name by then), The Stolen Hearts, Barreracudas, and more. The second night is headlined by The Paul Collins Beat and the infamous Peter Stubb. No disrespect to my friends, but everyone who will not be out of town for a wedding should be ecstatic.

• G.G. King's next Douchemaster 7", Drug Zoo, will be released sometime around July 15. A record release party also featuring The Stolen Hearts will be that night at 529.

Creative Loafing has all of your Bobby Ubangi needs online this week, including an excellent article by Chad Radford, MP3s of The Soft Spots, Gaye Blades, Lids, and BJ's solo offerings, and information on how you can contribute to his burial fund.