I get to CounterPoint Music Festival Friday afternoon just as a storm has passed. Lightning tore up the sky, and someone tells me later that M83’s equipment was damaged so badly that the band couldn’t play. There’s plenty more havoc where that came from: One editor says that her reporter suffered a severe concussion. A college student from India, who goes by Fridge Organic, tells me that his tent and possessions were ruined.
I do not pitch a tent. This is for the simple reason that I would definitely die in the wild, probably on the first day, and I have a nice car. After setting up my campsite (which is to say, parking), I walk down the graveled path to the festival grounds.
Atmosphere is the first set I catch, and he plays a roster of heartfelt songs including “Godlovesugly” off the 2002 album of that name and “Dear Jake” from his 2005 album You Can't Imagine How Much Fun We're Having. Sean Daley’s voice is clear and strong enough to carry through the open air and crowd.
Crystal Castles goes on next. There are two stages right next to each other, so that the sets can start one after the other. Alice Glass has dyed her hair silver purple, and otherwise wears black. Producer Ethan Kath plays the keyboard with his whole body. Glass crowd-surfs during “Alice Practice.” I notice a couple dozen helium balloons along with skulls, Pokemons, and related toys on sticks, suspended above the crowd. This will go on all weekend. Bubbles and beach balls and weed smoke float into the air during the drop of “Celestica.” They end the set with their cover of Robert Smith’s “Not in Love.”
I move with the crowd from the main stage area to the Beat Tent and Backbeat Tent — two stages that mostly showcase dubstep. Just between these two areas spins a Ferris wheel, which lights up at night like a beacon. Next to the Ferris wheel lies a huge expanse of mud that you have to walk through. Many people’s feet are covered in mud. Some have ditched their shoes altogether. One guy comes out of a Port-a-Potty in his bare feet.
The best things about BET Hip-Hop Awards weekend in Atlanta are often found hidden among Black Hollywood's nonstop celeb-a-thon of industry events, complete with exclusive dress codes and pricey V.I.P. lines. But Thursday night marked the unofficial kick-off of the weekend for those searching for something less pretentious when Maurice Garland served as the host for Welcome to Atlanta: The Draft Picks at the Five Spot in Little Five Points. With a line-up consisting of many artists from his recent Complex magazine list, 10 Atlanta Rappers to Watch Out For, the night was full of otherground Atlanta mainstays and newbies on the verge, including ratchet duo Mach Five; the bearded one, Sean Falyon; Mr. "Too Cool," Scotty; and #goldgang freshman Trinidad Jame$. Only thing missing was the red carpet.
More photos below the jump:
Former Guns N' Roses and Velvet Revolver guitarist Slash featuring Myles Kennedy and the Conspirators played The Tabernacle on Wednesday night.
Could it be? On top of the mischief conjured by thousands of cloaked fans, a world-class parade, and all the other out-of-this-world shenanigans not fit for print that went down at Dragon*Con this past weekend, one of ATL's great ska bands was playing in the midst of it all?
That was my first thought when I saw two set times for SS Vendetta buried in the laundry list of happenings for the 26th annual Dragon*Con conference. My second, is this really the SS Vendetta I know, or some off-beat reference in the realm of the Con I’m just too out of touch to understand?
Before reggae, rock, beatbox artist Matisyahu hit the stage at the Masquerade last night he played a very low-key acoustic set for one lucky gal (and all her friends and family) at a house in ATL’s Grant Park neighborhood.
High school teacher Bernadette O’Neill, 24, won a national competition leading up to the release of Matisyahu’s latest album Spark Seeker that landed the gold-certified recording artist in her living room.
“I just entered a confirmation code that I pre-ordered the album,” O’Neill said. “They drew it at random, and as long as I could meet the qualifications [like having a place for him to play] I won.”
Its not everyday you have an international recording artist pull up on a Harley in front of your house for a personal concert, but for this self-proclaimed “biggest fan” it was yesterday’s reality.
With his five-year-old son in tow, and supported by Dub Trio guitarist Dave Holmes, Matisyahu mingled, signed autographs, posed for family pictures, and took requests for the three-song set.
He kicked things off with “sunshine” at the O’Neill’s request, beatboxed with her little brother, and downed a couple glasses of white wine before roaring across town to hit the stage at the Masquerade.
Check out the full gallery of house show and concert photos.
ESP101 [Learn to Believe] at the Rush Lounge presented by IRIS Promotions. The weekly Saturday night event featured four stages, with new DJ's every hour. Laser lights, sparklers and glow sticks and hundreds of people in attendance.
August 18, 2012 — Nearly two-dozen ska bands hopped, skipped, and skanked their way to the ATL this past weekend to play the fifth annual Mass Ska Raid at the Masquerade, and quite literally toot their own horns.
Some top-notch acts and surprises included the Soul Radics’ more traditional two-tone from Nashville, Joystick’s wacky antics (led by ex-Detonate front man, Duck) from New Orleans, the Jersey stylings of Survay Says, and way too many others to mention.
Playing their first show in more than two years — and officially their last gig ever — hometown favorites 50:50 Shot brought the sound and energy long-time fans have been pining for since the band called it quits back in 2010. Plus, they launched a bunch of free shirts into the crowd and handed out free CDs like they were going out of business... probably because they were.
Check out the full gallery of Mass Ska Raid 2012 pictures. Send hate mail to the author above.
A staple event at Pal's Lounge, YO! Karaoke turned the communal sing-a-long into an Auburn Avenue obsession each Tuesday night for two-and-a-half years. Sadly, the event sang its last note last week. The packed narrow bar swayed with energy Tuesday as visual artist Fahamu Pecou hosted, under the guise of his trademark alter-ego Sex Choc, and sang along with his Karaoke Disciples. While the final night has passed, the Facebook page for the event says not to fear as more YO! Karaoke events are in the works.
About halfway through the industry listening session for 2 Chainz' highly anticipated Def Jam debut Based On a T.R.U. Story, it dawned on the Atlanta rapper that with all the bloggers aiming digital cameras and boom mics at him, his private listening party wouldn't be private for long. So he did what any artist would who, after a year and a half of self-made mixtape buzz and star-turning cameos alongside the likes of Kanye West, Drake, and Nicki Minaj, finally hopes to capitalize come next Tuesday's release date.
He stopped the music.
"I really like that song, too, but I don't want it to be out before the album comes out," he said from the sound stage inside a hot shoulder-to-shoulder crowd at Tree Sounds Studios. "I thought we were just going to chill. [Y'all] in here tryna make money."
It speaks to the stellar year the artist formerly known as Tity Boi has had that the studio located on Peachtree Industrial was packed with tastemakers, writers, photogs, DJs, collaborators, and well-wishers including B.o.B and Killer Mike. Atlanta was there to show love, but also to witness the culmination of what's amounted to an inspiring reinvention on 2 Chainz' part — one that's earned him shout-outs from the likes of Forbes along the way.
After a few formalities — including the presentation of his first gold plaque for "No Lie," his current No. 1 hit with Drake — 2 Chainz got down to business. The first song he played from the album was "Yuck," a track full of chonky beats, featuring Lil Wayne.
"My daughter always says "Yuck, daddy," 2 Chainz said, explaining the title. "Plus, it's so nasty."
ooooohhhh, I'm so excited!! I can't wait to see them together!
come on man you know you got a bromance. you probably still rock that OutKast…
Yes, 14 is the correct answer. I'll pass your info along to the group's manager,…
That was January of 2007, and they are 21 now, so I'm guessing 14?