Saturday, February 28, 2009

Spin Cycle: Top-selling CDs at Atlanta's independent record stores

Posted By on Sat, Feb 28, 2009 at 12:35 AM

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Criminal Records

466 Moreland Avenue

404.215.9511

For week ending 2/20/2009

1. Jason Isbell & The 400 Unit Jason Isbell & The 400 Unit

2. Morrissey Years of Refusal

3. M. Ward Hold Time

4. Animal Collective Merriweather Post Pavillion

5. Trail of Dead The Century of Self

6. Dan Averbach Keep It Hid

7. Abe Vigoda Reviver

8. Anthony & The Johnsons The Crying Light

9. Dexter Romweber Duo Ruins of Berlin

10. Various Artists Dark Was The Night

Decatur CD

356 W. Ponce de Leon Ave.

404.371.9090

For week ending 2/20/2009

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1. Various Artists Dark Was The Night

2. Jason Isbell & The 400 Unit Jason Isbell & The 400 Unit

3. Beirut March of the Zapotec

4. M. Ward Hold Time

5. Vertiver Tightly Knit

Wuxtry Records

2096 N. Decatur Road

404.329.0020

For week ending 2/20/2009

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1. Bob Dylan Tell Tale Signs

2. Don Iver Blood Bank

3. Beastie Boys Paul's Boutique 20th Anniversary Edition

4. The Killers Day & Age

5. Miles Davis Kind of Blue

Big Oomp Records

1120 Ralph David Abernathy Blvd. SW Ste. 2

404.755.5100

For week ending 2/20/2009

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1. O.J. Da Juiceman Otha Side of The Trap

2. Beyonce I am Sasha Fierce

3. Jamie Foxx Intuition

4. Ludacris Theater of The Mind

5. DJ Unk Second Season

Sound Shop

816 Oak St. SW

404.752.9494

For week ending 2/20/2009

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1. Charlie Wilson Uncle Charlie

2. Jamie Foxx Intuition

3. Anthony Hamilton Point of It All

4. Bobby Valentino Rebirth

5. India Arie Testimony Vol.2

6. T.I. Paper Trail

7. Beyonce I am Sasha Fierce

8. Keisha Cole A Different Me

9. Plies Da Realest

10. Musiq Soulchild ONMYRADIO

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Friday, February 27, 2009

Where you at? "Atlanta Bitch" — and thoughts on how we rep our city

Posted By on Fri, Feb 27, 2009 at 8:27 PM

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Is there a more self-referential genre than hip-hop? Once labeled "CNN for black people" by Chuck D, most commercial rap has long since lost that edge. But strip away the overt socio-political content and what remains is a strong sense of place — whether real or imagined.

No other form of music goes to such great lengths to lyrically represent/cultivate its environment. Despite Rakim's claim that "it ain't where you're from, it's where you're at"; it's actually all about where you're from or the place you claim as home.

Your city. Your block. Your crib. Not even your lack of imagination matters as long as you substitute it with plenty of ’hood references. Because at the end of the day, it's all about moving the crowd. And geography is often the least common denominator.

Of course, there are very creative ways to do it, and very wack ways. Over the past 20 years, Atlanta has been the benefactor of both.

The latest song to rep the city doubles as a response to the club anthem, "I'm in Miami Bitch" by LMFAO. Due to appear on DJ Smiles next mixtape, the remix "Atlanta Bitch" features Niko Villamor, o8o of T!Katz, and Gripplyaz. As far as Atlanta theme songs go, C. Will of the blog Fresh.I.Am sums it up best when he says it's "bound to be a club hit all the way from MJQ to Halo."

But in a broader context, it got me to reminiscing on Atlanta-themed rap songs — from the overly familiar (Jermaine Dupri's "Welcome to Atlanta") to the criminally overlooked.

Released 21 years ago by MC Shy D, "Atlanta-That's Where I Stay" (see below) was produced by DJ Toomp, who has earned industry acclaim in recent years for producing mega-hits for T.I. ("What You Know") and Kanye West ("Can't Tell Me Nothing"), among others. On the Shy D song "Atlanta-That's Where I Stay," he samples DeBarge's "All This Love" to give the track the laid back feel that, when mixed with the Miami bass sound so prominent in the South at the time, helped give birth to Atlanta's pre-OutKast Cadillac music.

Sort of ironic when you think about it — 20 years later DJ Smiles' "Atlanta Bitch" still has the city looking to Miami for inspiration.

Check out 2009's "Atlanta Bitch" and 1988's "Atlanta-That's Where I Stay," and let us know which one you think best represents the Atlanta you know. If neither, name your song.

Listen: "Atlanta Bitch"

Download: "Atlanta Bitch"

Listen: MC Shy D, "Atlanta-That's Where I Stay"

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Friday Funnies: "I'm On a Boat"

Posted By on Fri, Feb 27, 2009 at 6:29 PM

For those who missed the debut on SNL a couple of weeks ago, here's Andy Samberg, Akiva Schaffer and T-Pain "on a boat." It's good to see the dude has a sense of humor, but if T-Pain keeps this self-satirical shtick up much longer he'll never again be taken seriously as an artist.

I mean, hits like "Buy U a Drank," "I'm N Luv (Wit a Stripper" — those songs had meaning.

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Thursday, February 26, 2009

Weekend shows: Psychobilly, blues and burlesque

Posted By on Thu, Feb 26, 2009 at 4:13 PM

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Thurs., Feb. 26

ROD HAMDALLAH leads the weekly blues jam at Nik’s in Marietta. 10 p.m.

BLAST-OFF BURLESQUE, ROCK CITY DROPOUTS, NASHVILLE PUSSY perform for Rock In Peace: A Benefit for the Family of Laura Hardee. $15. 9 p.m. The Star Bar.

Fri., Feb. 27

ATOMIC BOOGIE rocks the stage two nights in a row — Friday and Saturday, Feb. 27-28 — at Johnnie MacCracken’s in the Marietta Square. 9 p.m.

Sat., Feb. 28

Atlanta's PSYCHO DEVILLES team up with THE STRAIGHT 8’S and Nashville's HILLBILLY CASINO at the Star Bar. $8. 9 p.m. Sat., Feb. 28.

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Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Georgia Metal dominates Scion Rock Fest.

Posted By on Wed, Feb 25, 2009 at 8:30 PM

Apocalyptic Visions' singer/guitarist Sam Cuadra, is one of the artists featured in CL's cover story this week, Damn Hipsters:  The quest for validation may be Atlanta's only vice.

With 30 of the world's most formidable metal bands descending upon Atlanta this weekend, it's worthy to note that several bands, including including Apocalyptic Visions are locals. Zoroaster, Withered, Apocalyptic Visions and Torche and Mastodon all call Atlanta home. Harvey Milk are Athens Natives and both Baroness and Kylesa hail from Savannah.

It's needless to say that Georgia is well represented at The Scion Rock Fest. The following list offers just a taste of the sights and sounds to behold this weekend.

Apocalyptic Visions "Move and Appear"

Zoroaster "Spirit Molecule"

Zoroaster "White Dwarf"

Click below to see more videos.

Continue reading »

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Pylon guitarist in ICU after heart attack/car accident

Posted By on Wed, Feb 25, 2009 at 5:29 PM

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Early in the evening on Monday, February 23 Pylon guitarist Randy Bewley  suffered a heart attack while driving on Barber Street in Athens. According to an e-mail from the group's vocalist Vanessa Brisco-Hay, "His van drifted off the road and tipped over. No other people or vehicles were involved.  Rescue workers did CPR at the scene and  he was taken to Athens Regional Medical Center. He is in ICU."

More information will be post here as it develops.

(Photo courtesy of Pylon).

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The Long Shadows celebrate "Cuidado" 7-inch release party tonight at the Earl

Posted By on Wed, Feb 25, 2009 at 2:17 PM

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Decatur trio the Long Shadows are playing a 7-inch release party at the Earl tonight (Wed., Feb. 25). "Cuidado" is the A-side for their second single. The song underscores slightly more Replacements-esque side of the group's earth-toned folk punk songwriting.

Coffin Bound, Thee Crucials and the Points from Washington D.C. also perform.

$8. 9 p.m. The Earl, 488 Flat Shoals Rd. 404-522-3950.

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Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Black Lips / ...Trail of Dead play Criminal in-stores tonight

Posted By on Tue, Feb 24, 2009 at 6:01 PM

...and if you're still lurking around Criminal Records after Ricky Powell's DJ set at Criminal Records, the Black Lips are sitting up for a 5 o'clock in-store to celebrate the release of 200 Million Thousand.

When they're done, Austin, Tex high concept rockers ...Trail of Dead will play an in-store at 7 p.m. Both shows are free.

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Fourth Beastie Boy Ricky Powell invades Atlanta tonight

Posted By on Tue, Feb 24, 2009 at 5:59 PM

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Photographer Ricky Powell (as in "homeboy throw in the towel...") was notoriously hailed as the fourth Beastie Boy during the group's Liscensed to Ill and Paul's Boutique era. Tonight (Tues., Feb. 24) Powell will be making two stops around town in support of a new book of photography, titled Oh Snap!

First he hits up Criminal Records for a quick DJ set from 3 to 4 p.m.

After that he's making an appearance at El Bar behind El Azteca on Ponce de Leon Avenue to present a slide show discussion of some history and his photos, and spin some more records. Entry for the El Bar show is $5.

(Photo courtesy of Ricky Powell)

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Live review: Balkans 7-inch release party at Vacation Boutique

Posted By on Tue, Feb 24, 2009 at 1:04 PM

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Balkans played a 7-inch release party on Sunday night (Feb. 22) at Vacation Gallery & Boutique in the Virginia Highlands, and there was one small problem: there weren't any 7-inches to be found. The label didn't get them from the pressing plant in time for the show, which has been an increasingly common problem as of late. Rumor has it that all of the pressing plants around the country are experiencing a huge demand for vinyl right now. As a result it's taking longer and longer to get records.

The group played anyway, and they wore an awful lot of denim when they did (see above). There were about 25 people in attendance for the 20+ minute set. Balkans craft a jittery and fast-paced punk/surf/fuzzed-out pop grind that teems with energy while they perform.

Guitarist/bass player Brett Miller played with a broken hand, and when he dropped his pick toward the end of the show he just played the string with his fingers. A fine, red spackling, a few smears and a couple of bloody finger prints marred the otherwise colorless face of his guitar by the time he was done.

It's a sure sign of dedication when a band literally sheds their own blood to keep a show moving along, and all of the pain and frenetic energy the group displayed paid off.

Double Phantom Records hope to have the 7-inches for sale sometime this week, and most definitely by the time they open for King Khan and the Shrines at the Masquerade on Tues., March 10.

(Photo by Chad Radford)

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