Savannah Stopover Photos-My Last Night of Live Music

Savannah Stopover, discover new music, meet incredible bands, all through my lens

**This has been a really hard time….it took way too long for me to post this. I have picked up my computer and put it down hundreds of times. I have slowly trudged through doing the thing I love most. No excuses, just highly distracted. Hope you and yours are healthy and social distancing. Still praying for mine, right now. I am thankful for this community and am concerned for what the future looks like…. here, I hope I might provide a little distraction.

Climbing the walls yet?

If you are asked to stay inside like we are in Atlanta, you might be like me …..going a little stir crazy. I am trying to catch the latest updates on the Coronavirus, but I am also trying not to watch too much news. I have made every effort to shower, dress, make up my bed, and set aside time for self care, like read a book, enjoy a frivolous tv show, check in with the people I love, and walk my dog outside. I am also planning to pick up the guitar and try to master the beast I have sadly abandoned several times. So far, it is going okay.

Recently, our neighbors met in the street 6 feet apart and we cheered each other with BYO cocktails. It was St. Patrick’s Day, since then we have met off and on with dear friends, careful to be a six foot social under 10 people. That first day seems like a lifetime ago and it was only two weeks ago. If we all remain healthy, this might be a really good occasional practice. Of course if the world allows the connection. Somehow when you can see others, you are reminded you aren’t alone in it all. Each day is all a bit overwhelming.

I find peace in sharing my festival experiences with you all. I know you have limited time to read my blog, but this is what I love to do. This is what I care about. These are the artists who need our support right now. So, come along with me as I finish my last day enjoying life at Savannah Stopover. It may be the last concert I go to in a very long while. Who knew? So returning to it and reminiscing is a healing experience for me. Please come along and enjoy it too. Ride the happy, oblivious ride before the world is forever changed. Because it is already changed.

I meet incredible people when I go to concerts. This year at Savannah Stopover everyone was especially connected and friendly. Maybe we had an inkling that life might be different in our future. Ashley Olson (out of Connecticut, I think) shared some pictures of some of her favorite bands at Stopover, and ones I missed. I thought I would share her three photos with you first, and give you some background, letting you see some choices other than the ones I visited.

THANKS ASHLEY!

Donna Savage

A local Savannah band, Donna Savage, has very little info on the internet, but are distinctive for the skeletal face masks they wear on stage. I wonder if it is hard to perform, but Ashley seems to think they were hindered at all and proved to be amazing.

Their Bio….

“Crawling fast outta the grave and thrashing loudly from a dark garage, these unknown swingers are trashing it hard. Driving rock and roll man! It’s mean surf punk that will keep you dreaming for doughnuts. These freaks make the scene happen and you can’t help keep the inner caveman or woman from creeping out to stomp. Remember when going to a show was dangerous? Yeah, well this is that.”

Photo credit Ashley Olson

Mind Shrine

Their Bio…

“A divination of sound procured by the hands of lazy Saturday mornings transformed by the mere acquaintances between Brian Gonzalez, Richie Alejandro, and Bradley DeAnda, and in 2018, expanded to include the silvery serenades of Jess Howard into perfect counterparts. Based in Houston, Texas with Chicano blood in their ranks, through the emotion and expression discovered in the resonance of their newfound sound, Mind Shrine was conceived. Their new debut EP encapsulates soft nostalgia that permeates the project and its approach to soft rock, psychedelia and indie.”

photo credit Ashley Olson

Here lies a beautiful voice and easy going chill vibe, absolutely perfect for the times we live in now!

Jeremy Albino

Their Bio…

“There’s no counting the worlds Jeremie Albino has travelled to get to where he is today, and no telling which ones he might head to next. Born and raised in the bright and booming metropolis of Toronto, his heart led him out of the city and into Prince Edward County, where country living and a decade of working on farms gave him the time and space to hone his songwriting skills. His music nods to all manner of troubadours who rambled down similar paths throughout history—he nods slyly to the legendary blues singers who inspired him, offers a soft and insightful touch with his folk songs, and stomps and swaggers through soulful rock ‘n’ roll. But Jeremie Albino is a natural and an original, created by an alchemy that favours, above all else, that most mysterious and coveted of qualities: heart.”

photo credit Ashley Olson

I have to say after listening to Jeremy Albino’s many tunes, I am wowed by his songwriting, catchy choruses, and musical ability. He leads a foot stomping band with lots of talent. Their songs should easily slip into your most listened playlist.

So apart from sharing those bands I may have missed….Here is my last day at Stopover X! Here, I share my experience and it was a doozy y’all!

My day began with the Whiskey Wolves of the West. I don’t really know how the morning morphed so quickly into the afternoon, but we were faced with a lingering late lunch of our choice or catching a band and eating a speedy lunch later. It was a struggle to put lunch off, but we soldiered on and saw the Whiskey Wolves. I have to say, I am glad we did! The growling tummy sacrifice was totally worth it.

Whiskey Wolves of the West

Whiskey Wolves of the West is a good old fashioned Southern rock band. Who doesn’t love to start a Saturday afternoon with a little foot stomping and guitar riffing, rock and roll joy? Whiskey Wolves is longtime Nashville guitar ace, Leroy Powell and celebrity singer/songwriter, Tim Jones. They describe their sound as “Dangerously fun Americana“. Yep…I am glad I began my music listening with their storied roots and romping sound.

Kate Bollinger

Step aside and let the good ones through. Kate has a soothing indie voice which does just that….soothes. She is a new artist to keep your eye on for sure.

El Rocko was impressively packed for a late Saturday afternoon. Somebody got the memo and I am lucky I was in the right place at the right time. Her biography….

“Kate Bollinger is an indie singer/songwriter from Virginia, her introspective, jazz-inflected songs mix gentle atmospheres with her bright, warm vocal delivery. Traversing folk, indie rock, and R&B leanings on early songs, she has settled into a mellow indie pop.” 

Her playlist….

Kate Bollinger proved to be a very nice surprise. She provided a soothing voice for the afternoon. By looking back and listening again, her voice makes more of an impression today as a calming, stress reliever in these crazy uncertain times. Give her a listen….

Damon and the Shit Kickers

I just stepped in to listen for a song or two. Damon and the Shit Kickers are a band that has a definite following in Savannah. I barely made it in due to a number restriction at The Jinx (yep they were packed). So when I entered, I was able to hoot a bit and then snap a fun picture of the band doing what they do best, playing real country jams!

Sir Woman

So, as I ran to the Ships of the Sea stage to catch the next bands, I carefully made my way to the front row. It wasn’t easy, but there was an adorable family whose dad, brother, and nephew, was the bass player for Sir Woman and they kindly let me stand beside them. The most excited were under 12 and jumping up and down in anticipation for seeing their relative play for the first time on a big stage. They also pointed out his gorgeous new gold guitar!

Their relative, a bass guitarist, was playing with Sir Woman. Sir Woman is the newest project for accomplished Austin singer/songwriter, Kelsey Wilson co-founder of Wild Child. Sir Woman has a new album Party City and it will be her first solo release. According to the adorable boys pushing the limits of the edge of the stage, this was their first chance to see the whole band in concert. My new buddy was so adorable and assured me he would give me a thumbs up when they played his favorite song, which turned out to be, “Highroad”. More power to the music makers spreading their genuine love to family, immediate and extended! (In my little video clip you can check out the guys and their exuberance!)

So much joy in their music….

Because their song wasn’t on my radar and it should’ve been…..Enjoy!

Durand Jones & the Indications

Durand Jones and The Indications is a deep soul, revival band out of Indiana. You know a band has panache when you find out the lead singer’s life was forever changed when his grandmother gave him an alto saxophone. I admit I swooned over Jones’ ability to craft the 70’s R&B throwback sound, and the massive crowd pressing us against the stage totally revived my inner swag (only wish I had more room to show it). This band is so smooth….I am thinking, if I wax the bottom of my shoes, I might be able to attempt his fast foot shuffle.

Yep, for a song or two it was that kind of close your eyes and feel the mellow vibes.

I love that they switch off lead singers. This dude not only jams on the drums, he has a falsetto that can send me back to the early days of rock and roll. They were a welcomed nostalgic comfort.

Then there is their belting James Brown vibe….incredible talent.

I was fortunate because the young boys near me were so excited about this band that the lead singer practically serenaded us. The boys held up their newly purchased Durand Jones t-shirts and waved them around throughout the set while their proud dad standing behind them beamed. It was an organic experience which made me incredibly happy to be present and witness their growing joy and love of music. And of course, I helped them get their first set list!

Caamp

CAAMP has risen to fame in the past couple of years. They are an American folk band from Columbus, Ohio and began as a project between childhood friends, Taylor Meier and Evan Westfall, who met at a summer camp in middle school. Later, they added a bass player, Matt Vinson. Today they craft great songs which bring the house down, and you can’t sneeze at their billboard number one song, “Peach Fuzz”. What an incredible show! At this point in the evening, I was so pushed into the stage by the masses of adoring fans, that I had to take a step back and then get out. Glad I did. Sometimes the sound is better a little further away with a much deserved cocktail in hand and room to dance.

Caamp puts on a power packed show and had no trouble lighting Ships of the Sea on fire!!!

This band is multi-talented. Each moves from instrument to instrument, taking the spotlight and shying from it, sending it to the lead once again. Caamp proved to be a visual tennis match of activity and musical sound volleys. Wow….

Bendigo Fletcher

Their bio…

“Louisville, KY’s Bendigo Fletcher possesses a resolute ruggedness that recalls the Kentucky landscape that inspired it. With singer Ryan Anderson’s songwriting and rangy, howling vocals as bedrock, the band’s creation floats along folk-rock tendencies, seeking to capture the next pop melody or psychedelic bridge within earshot”.

Motherfolk

This is a high energy band with a high energy sound. Motherfolk is an indie rock band out of Ohio, exploding with talent. Their latest album, Family Ghost, was released at the end of last year, so their songs are fresh and lively. The band is an intimately sewn combination of emotion, folk, and sing song rock. The happy, feel good tunes require deep examination because they delve into so much more than the bright choruses they belt out. Their newest album is a beaut, but I was seriously schooled by their many fans about their incredible discography. So many wishes and wants of favorite songs were passionately requested. Thank goodness they did more than satisfy the packed house.

Illiterate Light

Ohhhh Lawwwd this duo, Illiterate Light, just exceeded all of my expectations and had the most memorable show of Stopover. Every pound of the drum was thrilling and every strum of the guitar circled back to the lovely melodies they craft. The Virginia based duo is guitarist Jeff Gorman and drummer Jake Cochran. Illiterate Light is a band which has taken the indie-pop world by storm with incredible music, but their live show proved to be a serious heart stopper and a photographer’s dream! Yep, as I write this, tears glisten my eyes remembering their wowing performance. They are so talented and so intense. How are they today? I wonder. I imagine a bit upended and forever changed like all of us. As of Stopover, they were standing on the edge of seriously blowing up and becoming a force for 2020. Please check them out and give them some love. They deserve your support.

A little out of focus, but this next photo expresses the high intensity of their set. I looked around and the packed house was crazily dancing and singing right along with them. When a band can invoke this kind of energy, they have what it takes to steal my heart.

The Districts

We ended our last Stopover evening with The Districts. They are an American rock band originally from Pennsylvania, formed in 2009 when Rob Grote, Mark Larson, Connor Jacobus, and Braden Lawrence were all still in high school. Their latest album, You Know I’m Not Going Anywhere, was out on March 13 via Fat Possum, and their show was peppered with many of their newest tunes. But the crowd went wild when they played their tried and truest from past albums.

On tap for the evening from their discography was “Young Blood”, “Long Distance”, and “4th and Roebling”. I can tell you the late night crowd went loco! So much energy and exhilaration! They played Atlanta either before or after Stopover, but their show at Service Brewing Co. would have a hard time being topped.

I can’t believe the last night at Stopover was three weeks ago. It seems like a lifetime ago. Since I have been complying and social distancing, I am really enjoying live streams of many of the artists I have featured at Immersed in Cool Music through Instagram. I hope you are catching the streams too. What could be better than amazing artists playing in the privacy of your living room?

Well, of course, my answer would be going to a concert where you dance shoulder to shoulder with like minded, heartfelt band followers.

There is really nothing like it in the world.

Savannah Stopover-Friday Night Review in Photos

After an amazing Savannah Stopover, the pandemic particularly hits hard for bands who are just beginning their tour schedules. Please listen and support!

The news is gut wrenching. For the next two weeks, or even the unforeseeable future we will be social distancing to help stop the spread of COVID-19. After such an amazing weekend of music, this particularly hits hard for those bands who were just beginning their tour schedules. Many have new albums out right now, and money invested in merch and travel. I am so sad to report that almost every band I saw this past weekend at Stopover has had to make the, “We are so sorry but we have suspended our tour until further notice” call. The thoughtful, carefully worded statements have inundated my social’s feed for the past two-three days. It is a real bummer. A bummer for the fans who purchased tickets, the venues, and especially the bands that want to share their creative gifts with others to help spread their listening reach.

I hope you are paying attention and can support these new bands by listening, ordering a download or an album, and maybe even sharing the really good songs with friends. Cause, what better way to pass the time than listening to new music? I really can’t think of any better way.

So check out these amazing bands that I was able to see live. Get them on your radar and support them right now, and also when they get back to touring.

Tall Tall Trees-Perry Lane Hotel Rooftop Lounge

Ohmme

Ohmme is an indie-rock duo out of Chicago, Sima Cunningham and Macie Stewart. They recently announced their sophomore album, Fantasize Your Ghost. Known for their adventurous harmonies, jarring musical sounds, vocal switches and changes, they definitely wowed us as powerful performers. Trinity Methodist Church was an incredible space to highlight their vocal and musical abilities.

DeVotchKa

DeVotchKa are a four piece multi-instrumental vocal group out of Colorado. Their unique sound began back in the late 90’s and after multiple albums and sold out shows, they took a much needed hiatus in 2012. Then in 2018 released, This Night Falls Forever. Their musical style is described as gypsy punk, dark cabaret, indie-folk/rock. The lead singer, Nick Urata is a serious crooner with lyrical intensity and is backed by talented musicians playing a wide variety of instruments (guitars, piano, theremin, trumpet, violin, viola, accordion, sousaphone, acoustic bass, drums, and percussion). Love the lit up sousaphone. They played in the Trinity Methodist Church in Savannah to a standing room only crowd, and it was a wonderful experience.

This picture shows the wild experience of an instrument I have never seen before…. it is a theremin. Nick Urata waved his hand and made music with this incredible instrument. It is one of the earliest electronic instruments. The sound of the theremin has been described as “a purified and magnified saxophone.” He fluttered his fingers and waved his hand near the antennae to raise or lower the theremin’s pitch and volume. It was truly wild and magical. 

Shovels and Rope

It is a no-brainer to see the headliner of the main stage performance on Friday night. The talent of Shovels and Rope, an American folk duo out of Charleston, is undeniable. They have powerhouse vocals and electric performances, leaving the listeners always wanting more. They totally lived up to the expectations and wowed us all.

Honey Cutt

Honey Cutt is Kaley Honeycutt who is from Florida but relocated to Boston to build her music world. There she met Ari Blut who plays bass and Chris Chew on drums. With a new album out now, Coasting via Kanine Records, she is one to watch. I expect her talent to blow up, but with her touring schedule sidelined by the Coronavirus, I am counting on y’all to give her some love.

Amazing….

I had the pleasure of bumping into her at a fast food pizza joint after her show. She and her friends were truly kind. It was fast easy pizza but not the best. Her music deserved so much better for dinner that night. Life on the road. Sadly, her tour schedule is on hiatus for now.

The playlist!

“Coasting”

Deeper

Deeper is a band where I dig their twangy guitars and off beat, shifting sounds. All are enhanced by the lead singer’s emphatic edginess. They are singer and guitarist Nic Gohl, guitarist Mike Clawson, bassist Drew McBride, and drummer Shiraz Bhatti out of Chicago’s DIY scene. Their sound is post-punk/indie rock at its finest. Deeper has a new album, Auto-Pain via Fire Talk , out on March 27th. Please check them out, they are going to need so much support in these uncertain times.

The Nude Party

I learned about The Nude Party a couple of Stopover’s ago. They blew me away with their spirited, fun songs and entertaining performance. I can honestly say I have seen them multiple times since. They all met in Boone NC at Appalachian State University and started playing house parties. Since then, they have really honed their sound and created a lively, fun band that brings back good ol’ 60’s rock and roll while striking their own unique chord. They made a perfect Friday night finale! The people that came out in support refused to leave! So much love.

My posting is a bit slower than normal. The world is changing so dramatically and I am trying to keep up with the important information and repeatedly check in with friends and relatives. I hope you are well and that the new normal has you connecting with those you love and your creative projects.

Stay tuned one more post…..

Savannah Stopover 2020-Opening Night Review in Photos

I saw almost half of the shows at Savannah StopoverX. Sit back and let me reminisce my happy weekend with you!

Exactly one week ago I was dancing….

2020 has been a really weird year. It seems the world is constantly in flux, tragedy, or confusing conflicting situations. That doesn’t even take into account all of the rain, rain , and more rain. I was in desperate need to check out, do something fun for the sake of simple joy. I am so thankful Savannah Stopover comes so early in the year. It literally kicks off new music and provides a nice distraction from politics and pandemics.

This year was my 5th year covering this sleeping giant of a festival. out of the ten years they have put it on. I feel so lucky to be a part of Stopover. It truly is a diamond in the rough, and needs more recognition for the amazing music exploration opportunities it provides.

So you say, I don’t know anyone going. I just have to say, I meet the most incredible people each year. All ages and in all stages of life. Also, I am surrounded by people that love music. What could be nicer than that?

So you say, I don’t like big, crowded festivals. Stopover is for you. Each band plays in a small venue located around the city. The main stage at Ships of the Sea holds the largest crowd, but there is always room in the back or along the side to stay out of the maddening crowd (there is also a VIP lounge area).

So you say, I am not an indie music fan, well Stopover is for you. Over 60 bands perform and fit in many different categories, country, rock, dance music, post punk, folk, blue grass. You name a genre, almost any big genre and there is a band or a few for you.

So you say, I don’t know any of the bands playing. That is the point! It is total music discovery! With a little bit of perseverance and a lot of walking, you can see almost every band and learn who your new favorites happen to be. For me, I end up tracking my favorites throughout the year and always hear their newest music first. Many Stopover newbies have albums/songs that end up in the top music for the year.

So even though this amazing festival has come to a close for 2020, you can make plans for March 2021 and live vicariously through my 2020 photos. I saw almost half the shows. So sit back and let me reminisce my happy weekend with you. Crazy that it was only last week….it feels like a lifetime ago.

Here is my photo montage of the opening night…..

Opening Night Thursday

Savannah Stopover 2020-Opening Night

Stomp, Clomp, and Romp to the great bands at StopoverX.

Tall Tall Trees

If you haven’t experienced this talented musician’s show…you haven’t fully lived. Tall Tall Trees is Mike Savino and his electric banjo comes to life through his magical plucking. He adds loops and effect pedals which enhance the folk, roots, psychedelic sound. Did I mention his banjo lights up and resonates with the music? What an amazing start to Stopover X!

I have to include a cute photo of my favorite Savannah Stopover music loving friends from Myrtle Beach! This guy is always on the front row and knows his music. I am surprised he isn’t wearing his signature dark shades! Lucky me to have him as a loyal blog follower! He even made me hand out cards to everyone around them.

The Bones of J.R. Jones

It was incredibly cold on Thursday night. My hands were frozen because I didn’t have any gloves. The photos reflect my shivering and my cold to the bone feeling. Because the music was so amazing, the dropping temperatures and wind didn’t seem to phase the crowds. We all just huddled up a bit tighter, and moved closer to the music to keep warm.

Meet Karla and her husband Pete. She DM’d JR Jones aka Jonathon Linaberry and said she hoped to hear her favorite song they used in their recent wedding. Low and behold he did and gave them a shout out! What a great guy! They were thrilled!

I rushed over to Service Brewing because I had a quick minute to check out another band. I took in a couple of songs with Savannah locals, Clouds and Satellites. I enjoyed their indie/country rock vibe. They had the perfect sound for a enjoying a nice cold brew and gathering with friends.

Clouds and Satellites

Acid Carousel

Acid Carousel slaps! They are 100% energy and left my head spinning a little. It was almost impossible to capture their on stage photos without a camera I can’t afford. But, I gave it a shot and here are a couple worth sharing. The hazy photos resemble their enigmatic music. Go check them out, if you ever get the chance to see them live. They gathered a bigger crowd with each song, and we were all dancing and singing, never taking our eyes off of their entertaining performance. So much fun! Seeing them play was a happy accident, because I was actually there to see the next band.

Acid Carousel is a molded combination of 60’s psych/pop, maybe some of The Beatles dreamier tunes, and surf rock. Be prepared for lots of guitar, full on drums, and head swinging /banging beats. It was a groovy time travel. I had the pleasure of chatting with them after their show and found them to be approachable, fun loving, and true to their on stage personas. It was a pleasant surprise to say the least. Here’s hoping they venture back to Georgia sometime soon!

Neighbor Lady

Atlanta’s own, Neighbor Lady was up next. They always put on a great show. Their sound is indie-rock with a hint of country. The lead vocalist, Emily Braden, has a power packed voice and the rest of the band stands strong in support.

And just so you know, this is Jordan Reynolds (who fronts Rose Hotel), but she was off to the side and sort of hidden from the adoring crowd.

I love this short clip of the band, because it gives you a hint of their talent.

The Cowboys

I slipped into The Jinx to listen to a few of The Cowboys’ tunes on my way to the next gig. They had a retro indie sound which captured the many fans. I was surprised they weren’t a country band. I looked them up and found they are out of Indiana, and have quite a lot of depth of music. Check them out.

Elf Power

Elf Power has a vast history of musical influence. They began in 1994 in Athens, GA. They have collaborated and had contributions from Neutral Milk Hotel, Kevin Barnes with Of Montreal, and supported acts like R.E.M. Their indie rock sound is totally relevant today and they have a large discography of well written nostalgic tunes. This timeless band is a classic.

Here’s just a hint of the Athens band….

Omni

Hallelujah! I was finally able to experience Omni live. I have been following their music for a while now and love their post punk sound. I have sooo many songs on repeat on my personal Spotify playlist and I have shared them here on the blog. They continue to get better and better. Their show was a solid one as well. I love when a band isn’t over produced in a studio, so the “live” version is a great one. Omni definitely met all of my expectations. The fans were rocking out too, squeezing in every nook and cranny of The Jinx.

I hope you are safe, that you have provisions for social distancing, and that you can simply enjoy the beauty of gifted musical creatives. I have a couple of other posts on Stopover. Stay tuned and follow me to bring a little joy into your life.

PHOTOS: Slaughter Beach, Dog @ The Masquerade

Slaughter Beach, Dog plays Atlanta with support from Cave People @ The Masquerade 8/22/19

Jake Ewald of Slaughter Beach, Dog

Slaughter Beach, Dog came to Atlanta in support of Jake Ewald’s third album, Safe And Also No Fear via Lame-O Records. With the latest album, Ewald continues to develop a solid folk-rock sound by experimenting musically and becoming more independent, despite the addition of former band mate from MB, Ian Farmer.

Opening up the show was Philly based Cave People. Lead singer, David Tomaine began with a sentimental tribute for the recent, unexpected death of the original opener and poet, Spenser Hogans. He recited one of his lovely poems from a notebook. The busy crowd quickly hushed and even as people continued to file into the venue, all listened with deep respect for the unusual start. Tomaine and his three bandmates (two of which also played with Slaughter Beach, Dog) leaned into their guitars and steady drums to play a combination of toe-tapping jams that put the crowd on a more upbeat note. As the crowd responded with dancing and swaying to their eleven songs, Cave People proved to be a talented support of the anticipated Slaughter Beach, Dog.

Check out a live video…

Jake Ewald of Slaughter Beach, Dog has always been a master of words, by beautifully describing seemingly mundane details of a simple day. Through catchy combinations and maturing revelations, he has captured a loyal following. In support of his third album, after his band Modern Baseball, he and his bandmates (with guitarist Ian Farmer also of MB) arrived in Atlanta at The Masquerade last Thursday night. Many diehard admirers waited at the stage and discussed seeing him just this past March when he toured solo. He has come into his own with his latest album as he musically ventured through his anxious twenties. We were there anticipating the stunning set in response. With a new album and a dense catalog, there was the promise of a welcomed lengthy show. Ewald didn’t disappoint and played sixteen songs and a crowd pleasing encore. It was a healthy mix of tried and true songs blended in nicely with the newest tunes from Safe and Also No Fear. This set seemed tighter and more lively in comparison to his March solo show that also included a bunch of his past songs. The newest music uses simple but powerful lyrics to uncover complex, thoughtful ideas on life, growth, and change. The show was relatable, unbearably honest, and brilliant fun.

Slaughter Beach Dog setlist 8/22/19

They played song after song with little commentary, or banter. The only breaks were when time was spent whistling, clapping, and cheering between tunes which provided enough space to set up for the next song. The Masquerade crowd proved to be hard core fans, singing along to almost every lyric (including many of the new songs from the latest album). Ewald’s smile expressed his satisfaction, despite the fact there was a little room to squeeze in a few more attendees. Slaughter Beach, Dog picked a tough night with a lot of competition throughout the city at multiple venues. So those that showed were the loyal ones, bringing their friends to enjoy the heartfelt music. Those that didn’t come….missed a great show..

Check out a live video

Check out the photos….

Cave People

Slaughter Beach, Dog

I was thrilled to meet Emilie and her friends from Athens. She scored both playlists!

Slaughter Beach, Dog has a bunch of scheduled shows coming up. Don’t miss them if they come near you. They run through the end of September. LINK HERE

The Japanese House @ Terminal West-with Art School Girlfriend

PHOTOS: The Japanese House with Art School Girlfriend @Terminal West Atlanta 5/23/19

Last Thursday at Terminal West, opener Art School Girlfriend began the evening playing to the restless, rowdy fans of The Japanese House. Her set proved to be soft, laid back, and dreamy. Art School Girlfriend laid the groundwork for the mood and thoughtful listening. As her songs played on, the crowd was happily surprised by her looped back beats with a surprise pop to them.

Polly Mackey has an introspective and atmospheric electronic style with similarities to Beach House, XX, or Daughter. Armed with only her soft vocals, guitar, and synth she produces a sound which is mysterious, dreamy, and sonic texture. Her latest release, “Come Back To Me,” explores love, longing, and desire.

Art School Girlfriend-Come Back To Me

The Japanese House -Terminal West

Last Thursday The Japanese House played to a sold out show at Terminal West In Atlanta, GA. After writing an album review on the latest release, Good At Falling, I knew I didn’t want to miss this one.

Something magical happens when the audience of a concert can sing every word. Atlanta proved to be some of the most loyal fans of Amber Bain/The Japanese House. Did it set the bar for their show and their performance? Sure. Was it a bit annoying for those that attended to hear the band not the audience? Yes, a bit. Did Amber Bain appreciate the loyalty? Of course. Was the behavior a long term sustainable vibe? Not really….

For me, it was charming at first, but then it became more important for the crowd to hear their own voice than Amber’s. When I come to a show, I want to see and hear the band….not just their fans. But, I totally get it. I also knew many of the words for The Japanese House’s latest album. I listened hundreds of times before I wrote the album review for Good At Falling (check it out on Soundblab by clicking hereREVIEW). I only wish the sound to her mic was amped up to compensate. I think Amber showed appreciation for the fans too. She held her heart on multiple occasions and waved to those fans who waved to her, and even turned the mic their way. The audience was deeply emotional. This young artist is a major influence to her listeners., no doubt about it.

Bain made it through sound problems, despite having to halt a song which had a heady and lush intro. She kicked over her water bottle in defiance and had to signal the stage guy who must have been asleep at the wheel. Once the sound was working again, the song was abandoned. Instead, she asked the crowd to name a song, and she would play it. The sold out show went wild screaming all of their favorites. She settled on playing an older tune not from the current album, and they were overjoyed.

A short video clip of “Saw You In A Dream”

A group of girls next to me were quite emotional, deeply connecting with the lyrics and the sounds of each song. Streams of tears glistened their faces. I couldn’t help but snap a pic, they were totally devoted and appreciative of this young introspective artist and her songs. But they weren’t alone. The crowd was filled with guys singing along too.

Bain and the band continued to play and sing brilliantly, but I am not sure Amber fully recovered from the tough sound blunder. She seemed ready to be done with the show. After what I thought was their exit for an encore, she slammed down her guitar and kicked over the microphone and left abruptly. The audience was a bit confused and taken aback, but quickly began shouting and clapping the band back. After a couple of minutes the lights at Terminal West went up and Terminal West’s exit music played. That’s when we knew it was over. I have to admit it left me a little bummed. I am so tuned into the idea of an encore and the band’s return. I must confide with you all that I now sort of expect it…

Here is the set list. A young girl from Athens nabbed it and I quickly took her picture. Most all of the songs were played, the show lasted about an hour. It was an incredible night with a rising star on the Indie scene. Her music is lush and unforgettable, full of messages saturated with personal perseverance and emotional growth. At only 21, and a debut album that took several years to create, perfect, and release, Amber Bain is definitely an indie artist to pay attention to and see live.

Photos credit-Carrie Grayson

The Japanese House-Lilo

Just a few dates left in the North American Tour, then they are off to Europe and Asia. Don’t miss if they come near you.

Savannah Stopover Saturday -The Joy Formidable and 11 other indie bands-Photos and Review #happystopover

Savannah Stopover Saturday . The Joy Formidable and 11 other stellar bands gave us a closing night to remember.#happystopover
The Joy Formidable,Skylar Gudasz, Savannah Conley, Tallies, Living Hour, Surfer Blood, Deeper, Pylon Reenactment Society, Bad Bad Hats, The Beths, and Mike Krol

When the sun came up, I didn’t. I needed the extra morning sleep to recover from the miles of walking and running I did for the past two days. Saturday morning was recovery mode. But, looking over the schedule, I found that food was offered at the first venue! Eureka! Stopover did it again. Perfect planning!

On the way, I noticed how spring had already sprung in Savannah.

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I also jumped in to a vintage mall. After seeing loads of wonderful stuff, I saw this curious display of all things horrifying. The booth was filled with bat corpses. Is there a market for this?

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Saturday

The day began with a nice rhythm despite the wild nightmare visions of critters in jars. The sun was out, the temperature was warm, and the first bands were at The Grey’s outdoor space.  Lunch and libations were available. So, I purchased the only veggie choice on the menu…a pimento cheese sandwich. I was happily surprised it had a spicy kick to it. Yum! It was an easy way to settle into the crazy schedule I had ahead of me. So, I kicked back and relaxed, listening to the luminous voice of Skylar Gudasz. A favorite song of her set, “Play Nice”.

Skylar Gudasz

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Video

 

Me…doing my thing!

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Savannah Conley

Up next was Savannah Conley. She was entertaining as she explained each of her songs and it provided us a glimpse into her life. She has a nice sense of humor, despite the somewhat sorrowful songs she sings. She recalled the first time her niece heard her sing her tune “All I Wanted”. Singing, “All I wanted was someone to share a moment, All I wanted was you.” But when her niece heard it she said, wait a minute….you don’t want pretty clothes, or baby dolls, or candy? She wasn’t quite sure how to explain the song to her.