Clot dives deeper into the maelstrom with ‘Casual Masochist’

Clot. Photo by @avianarsonist

In April, grindcore outfit Clot unveiled a debut single, titled “Cerebral Calamity,” via Earache Records Distribution.

In 2016, vocalist Christian Perez, who also leads the fractured Americana group Hark, suffered a stroke at the young age of 24 — hence the name Clot. Soon after, his father was involved in a car accident that left him with permanent brain damage. Dealing with these experiences opened up wholly new dimensions of music for Perez and bandmate Yasin Knapp (of math rock outfit Things Amazing, and atmospheric rockers Of The Vine) as a means of finding balance, context, and possibly resolution. Perez writes the lyrics and sings, while Knapp handles the musical arrangements, steeped in a hissing atmosphere of high-speed rhythms, and distortion. Drummer Cameron Austin (Apostle, Of The Vine) unleashes an avalanche of blast beats, pushing the music deeper into the maelstrom.

Bass player Parker Estopinal (of Kid Macho) and guitar player Daniel Weed (Holy Wound and Mannequin Grove) were recruited into Clot after these recordings were made.

Their latest single, “Casual Masochist,” expands upon these themes of real-time confrontation of grief, mortality, and emotional tumult. This time, songwriter and vocalist Perez channels feelings of utter contempt for organized religion and oppression — no matter what form it takes — into lyrics such as “Back up, you bastard. No gods, just masters. Skin stricken with pulsating blisters.”

“Casual Masochist” is a simple, powerful, death-afflicted dirge teeming with shades of grindcore touchstones (Full of Hell, Primitive Man, Old Man Gloom, and so on), but exists in a singularly miasmatic space. Press play below.

A new full-length album is in the works. Keep an ear out for a noiser, and more atmospheric approach with future offerings.

In the meantime, Clot plays Sabbath Brewing on Sun., June 12, with Iron Gag and Fox Wound. Catch them again on Thurs., June 30, When they play Eyedrum with For Your Health, askysoblack, and Royal Scam.

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GG King, No Touch, CRT, and Psychic Death play a benefit for the family of Alysse Robertson at The Earl on Wednesday, June 8

GG King, No Touch, CRT, and Psychic Death play a benefit for the family of Alysse Robertson at The Earl on Wed., June 8.

Friends of Alysse Robertson come together for a memorial show and a benefit to help her family cover Alysse’s medical and funeral costs.

If you are not able to attend, you can contribute by buying a ticket here. All funds will be paid to the family.

$12. 7:30 p.m. (doors). 8 p.m. (music starts).

Klimchak and Stuart Gerber bring ‘LeBeato Lounge: Water Wonderland’ to the McDonough Tunnel on Sunday, May 15

Stuart Gerber (left) and Klimchak. Photo courtesy Klimchak

Composer, percussionist, and longtime Atlanta sound sculptor Klimchak is bringing everything, including the kitchen sink, to the McDonough Tunnel on the Southside BeltLine on Sunday, May 15.

The performance, titled LeBeato Lounge: Water Wonderland, is part of the Art on the Atlanta BeltLine series, and will feature three water and percussion-based works performed live: “Waterphonics” and “Bowled Over,” both accompanied by GSU associate professor of percussion and founder of the new music ensemble Bent Frequency Stuart Gerber. A third piece, titled “When You Whistle, It’s Not Work,” will also be performed solely by Klimchak.

It will be an evening of deep listening and engaging rhythms, as both Klimchak and Gerber explore the vast and mysterious sonic qualities of the former train tunnel by way of various homemade percussion instruments, bows, electronic manipulations, bowls filled with various levels of water, and a working sink on a cart for a wet and wild journey into sound.

… And if you are a truly old school Atlanta music head, you’ll remember the tunnel from the freak-folk and noise shows that Matthew Proctor (Hubcap City, Pony Bones) organized there in the early aughts — when the BeltLine was a looming reality, the tunnel had train tracks running through it, and it was a fairly secluded location.

Free. Music starts at 3 p.m. 95 Milton Ave. SE (between Milton Ave. and the I-75 / I-85 underpass on the BeltLine).

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Victory Hands ‘Braden’ 7-inch release party with MTN ISL, Skin Jobs, and Scratch Offs at Sabbath Brewing on Sunday, May 15

Victory Hands play the “Braden” 7-inch release party at Sabbath Brewing in EAV on Sunday, May 15. MTN ISL, Skin Jobs, and Scratch Offs also perform.

This show will mark Scratch Offs’ debut performance, so get there early.

… And if you don’t already know, Victory Hands releases are all named after journalists who were blacklisted by former President Richard M. Nixon leading up to his impeachment. Hence the titles of their previously released singles, “Bishop,” “Bernstein,” and “Anderson.”

Free. 2 p.m. (doors). 3 p.m. (show). 530 Flat Shoals Ave. SE.


Checkers Hot Dog Emporium will also be on deck. Check out Tricky Dick-themed menu suggestions below. … And yes, there will be veggie dogs for the veggie folks!


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A brief history of Kirkwood Ballers Club

It’s About Time’s Nathan Emerson performing at Eyedrum. Photo by Chad Radford

What might the last few decades of Atlanta’s underground music scene look like if beer sales weren’t a factor in determining who gets booked to play a show? If the cover charge at the door was simply a donation of whatever you wanted to give? And, most importantly, performers showed up specifically to play something new that they’ve been kicking around, all for an audience that’s hungry for adventurous music — the wilder and the more challenging the better?

The Kirkwood Ballers Club experimental open mic night at Eyedrum Art & Music Gallery every third Thursday each month opens a window into just such an intrepid world of creative music.

Tight Bros. Network promoter Randy Castello christened the Kirkwood Ballers Club at Lenny’s Bar on Memorial Drive (now the site of the live-work-play condo building dubbed The Leonard) in March of 2004. But the idea was initially hatched in the late ‘90s, while hosting late-night parties in the basement at KBC co-founder Unisa Asokan’s house on Martha Ave. in Kirkwood.

“We had a sign in the door that said “Kirkwood Ballers,” Castello says. “Playing music was always the center of attention and the reason for getting together there.”

Castello even recalls one late-night gathering during Kirkwood Ballers Club’s early years in which composer and indie rock/avant-garde luminary David Grubbs (Squirrel Bait, Bastro, and Gastr del Sol) came back to stay at their house after performing at Eyedrum with cellist Nikos Veliotis earlier that evening.

“It was late at night, he was on the road, and we started playing right beneath his room, it had to be so loud,” Castello says. “It got to a point where he came downstairs — he was so cool about it — and said, ‘guys, can we just keep it down.’”

From the beginning, Kirkwood Ballers Club’s mission has always been to, “provide an open forum for experimental musicians and performance artists who’ve found it difficult to get shows elsewhere around town,” Castello says. “I also wanted to create an idea incubator that would allow others to perform and experiment with each other musically, and to create and nurture new creative ensembles.”

In its various incarnations, Kirkwood Ballers Club has created an environment where generations of avant-garde musical energy and talent has flourished throughout periods of existence and inactivity.

During its early years at Lenny’s, a parade of local punk, hip-hop, jazz, and indie rock musicians would sign up to perform including everyone from garage punks and avant-garde musicians Cole Alexander of the Black Lips and Bradford Cox of Deerhunter to Grammy-winning saxophone player Kebbi Williams of Tedeschi Trucks Band. All utilized the format to create music in-the-moment that expanded upon their typical repertoires.

Kebbi Williams. Photo courtesy KBC

“The Kirkwood Ballers Club was always a place of pure freedom,” says Kebbi Williams, who often showed up with large ensembles of musicians who lit up the room with an explosive freeform skroking jazz set.

Years later, Williams facilitates a similarly-minded Sunday evening jazz jam at Gallery 992 in West End, building upon the energy he tapped into while performing during KBC nights.

“I learned from Kirkwood Ballers Club at Lenny’s and from the scene at Eyedrum how to be free,” Williams goes on to say. “I saw some of the most original and provocative things at the Kirkwood Ballers Club, and it totally affected my life as an artist.”

Kirkwood Ballers Club has also drawn the attention of nationally touring acts who happened to be in town for the night. King Khan’s first Atlanta show was a KBC night.

“I remember introducing myself to Arish [King Khan] and he sprayed me in the face with Silly String,” Castello says. “It caught me off guard, and I didn’t know what to say, but it turned out to be a great night!”

Over the years, KBC changed locations, setting up at other now defunct venues along the way, including 11:11 Teahouse, The Highland Ballroom, and The Big House. It even settled in for a late-night incarnation at The Star Bar in Little Five Points for a stint.

Oftentimes other promoters including Matt McCalvin, Waylon Pouncy, and Matt Greenia stepped in to keep it going.

Brad Hoss of Hoss Records and Ryan Rasheed of LebLaze and Prefuse 73 launched a New York version of KBC at Brooklyn venue Zebulon Concert Cafe in 2011.In Atlanta, mashup artist Greg Gillis, aka Girl Talk, songwriter Jana Hunter, and even John Dwyer of psych-punk outfit Osees have also made KBC appearances.

Kirkwood Ballers Club host Sun Christopher. Photo by Chad Radford

In 2021, the rebirth of Eyedrum Art & Music Gallery at its current location brought with it a wholly new iteration of the Kirkwood Ballers Club. Sun Christopher hosts the monthly event as Castello settles into his evolving role as Eyedrum’s Facility Manager.

In the modern era, KBC’s spirit has been embraced by a wholly new generation of musicians, signing up for a 15-minute time slot, all under the evening’s long standing tagline: “Bring an instrument, record, beat, turntable, laptop, prepared piece, song, film score, voice, bag of blood, agenda, youth rebellion …”

Ipek Brooks at Kirkwood Ballers Club. Photo by Chad Radford

Castello adds that, in the past, he never used the term “open mic” in relation to KBC. “I was worried that it would bring out a lot of singer-songwriters playing cover songs, which has happened from time to time.”

In Eyedrum’s new home at 515 Ralph David Abernathy Blvd., a wholly new set of faces has picked up the mantle, ranging from artists reading poetry, gorgeous minimalist piano compositions, blazing industrial beats, and free-form art-rock ensembles have filled out the roster.

Of the more recent staples of KBC’s monthly rounds Mikey and Hoff of the band Upchuck perform regularly with various new outfits. Another next generation fixture is noise artist Nathan Emerson, who performs sometimes solo, sometimes with an ensemble, under the name It’s About time.

It’s About Time’s sets have taken shape as screaming, squelching displays of noise, clanging metal percussion, and feedback, punctuated by blasts of fireworks, and Emerson writhing on the floor in a half-naked state. It’s a blend of real-time catharsis cut from abstract emotions — all set to the tune of old school industrial clatter and confrontation. It is the bleeding edge of the creative spirit that KBC has always nurtured, with precisely the type of DIY pyrotechnics that wouldn’t fly in most small club settings.

“When I first pulled up to Kirkwood Ballers Club I didn’t really know how my act would come across,” Emerson says. “I actually kinda intended to rile people up and maybe stir up the audience a little bit. Which of course did happen, but I think most folks kinda dug what I was doing. It’s so surprising to have a space where someone like myself can perform an explosive act, flogging myself and screaming bloody murder, and not even receive the slightest of heckles. There is simply not a more open and accepting space in Atlanta, in my opinion,” he adds. “Literally all sorts of people can perform whatever their hearts desire there. I’m eternally grateful to have gotten my career started there and continue to perform there whenever I can.”

For Castello, it’s this engagement with the community, and the love of music that keeps Kirkwood Ballers Club coming back.

“Getting something started, getting people to come and maybe they’ll want to start a band or a new project, or just to play music,” Castello says. “That’s what we do here, and that’s what we do it for.”

This article originally appeared in the May issue of Record Plug Magazine.

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Tom Cheshire and Eric Lee’s Birthday Bash at the Star Bar on Saturday, April 2

Mothers, lock your doors and hide your children. It’s Tom Cheshire and Eric Lee’s birthday bash at the Star Bar!

Order of the Owl, Rod Hamdallah, Young Antiques, The Tom Cheshire Band (TCB⚡), The Warsaw Clinic, Motor Exploder, Pillar Saints, and more are lined up to perform. The show is a benefit for Upbeat Atlanta: The Tigerbeat Foundation for Musicians.

… and Junior’s Pizza will be on hand!

$15. 6 p.m. (music starts at 7 p.m. sharp). The Star Bar, 437 Moreland Ave NE.

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New Sounds Improvised by Quinn Mason, Kris Gruda, Dan Carey Bailey, and Kenito Murray at Best End Brewing on Friday, April 1

Kenito Murray leads an evening of improvisation at Best End Brewing Co. on Friday, April 1.

Percussionist Murray, along with Quinn Mason (tenor sax, keys), Kris Gruda (guitar), and Dan Carey Bailey (electric bass) will craft everything from trip hop and ambient sounds to jazz, Delta blues grooves, and dub beats.

Dan Carey Bailey (left) and Quinn Mason. Photo by Kenito Murray


Free. Music is live from 7-10 p.m. 1036 White St. SW (on the Westside BeltLine).

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Create Your Own Culture! Emory’s art, punk, and DIY fest returns on Thursday, April 7

After two years in the void, Emory University’s DIY fest returns on Thursday, April 7. Check out live music from Loony and the debut of El Matador (feat. Katy Graves from Catfight, Randy Gue of Final Offering, and Chris Pollette).

Stations will be set up for silkscreening T-shirts, making buttons, woodblock prints, learning how to write graffiti with Mad Clout, and more + Randy’s famous tower of pizza will be in full effect. Come hungry and pre game for the Spits show at the Earl later that night.

Free. 6:30-8:30 p.m. Emory’s Visual Arts Building and Campus Life Pavillion. 700 Peavine Creek Drive. Parking is available in the Peavine Parking Deck at 22 Eagle Row.

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Yasmin Williams plays Eddie’s Attic on Sun., March 27

Yasmin Williams


Woodbridge, Virginia native Yasmin Williams is a true innovator of acoustic music. 

With her 2021 album, Urban Driftwood (Spinster), Williams fuses elements of traditional country and blues fingerpicking styles with jazz, hip-hop, and indie rock textures to weave a lush, sweet ambience. She plays the guitar almost like it’s a piano while tapping her feet on the floor to create percussive rhythms. Songs bearing titles such as “Through The Woods,” “Juvenescence,” and “Sundshowers” create a spacious atmosphere that’s filled with baroque melodies, giving nods to everyone from John Fahey to Alice Coltrane, while settling into a singularly modern and ethereal sound.

$15. 5 p.m. (doors). 6 p.m. (showtime). Eddie’s Attic.

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Kim Gordon’s ‘No Home Tour’ feat. Mary Lattimore comes to Variety Playhouse on Thurs., March 24

Kim Gordon photo by Natalia Mantini.

Kim Gordon‘s (Sonic Youth, Body/Head) “No Home Tour” feat. Mary Lattimore comes to Variety Playhouse on Thurs., March 24. $30-$59. 7 p.m. (doors). 8 p.m. (show).

Tickets go on sale for the general public on Fri., Jan. 28. Pre-sale begins Thurs., Jan. 27 at 10 a.m. Use code: KIMG22

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