Crazy Doberman and World Upside Down play the Earl on Mon., Dec. 6

Crazy Doberman makes a triumphant return to Atlanta on Mon., Dec. 6.

This time around the the Midwest / East Coast-based free-improvisation outfit performs as a seven-piece, wielding an industrial-grade skronk, drone, and clatter.

World Upside Down, a large ensemble featuring members of Mothers Milk (formerly Atlanta’s Uniform) and more also performs. $12. Doors open at 8 p.m. Music starts at 9 p.m.


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Upchuck plays a 7-inch release show at Eyedrum Sat., Nov. 6

Upchuck. Photo by Marlon Garcia

Upchuck celebrates the arrival of the group’s debut 7-inch (Famous Class Records) with an outdoor show at Eyedrum Art & Music Gallery on Saturday, November 6.

Its About Time also performs.

An extremely limited quantity of Upchuck’s “In Your Mind” b/w “Upchuck” blood-spattered 7-inches will be for sale on the merch table—first come first served.

Doors open open at 7:30 p.m. Music starts at 8:30 p.m. $15-$20. Get tickets here.

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4 1/2 Grizzes with David Bair of New Bedlam

David Bair of New Bedlam. Photo by Chad Radford


At the top of the year, New Bedlam went into Maze Studios with Ben Etter to record a new EP titled Steady Diet of Bullshit (released June 18). Later, singer and guitar player David Bair, bass player Tyler Davis, drummer Mike Walden, and guitarist Michael Parrish returned to the studio to film live performances of each of the EP’s five songs.

Recently, Bair and I made our way to El Myr in Little Five Points to talk about the group and the latest EP while knocking back a few Grizzes — four and-a-half Grizzes each, to be exact. What’s a Grizz, you ask? It’s a pony-sized bottle of Corona with a shot of well Tequila dropped in, and a lime placed atop so you don’t spill too much on the way back to your table.

This is part 1 of our conversation. Keep an eye out for part 2 coming soon.

What brought you to Atlanta?

Me and our bass player Tyler were in a band called Bully Pulpit. We moved here from Charleston in 2016. Danny, the kitchen manager here at El Myr, was the frontman for that band.

We were touring up and down the East Coast, putting out records, and bought a van. Charleston just wasn’t a good place for our headquarters. We had some homies living here, so we moved. … Moving four guys into a house, who didn’t have jobs, and had never really lived with anyone else before … It fell apart pretty quickly. Me and Danny and Tyler stayed. We put a lot of time and money and energy into this band, and that’s what pushed me to pick up the guitar again and start writing music with a new band. Nothing will happen if you don’t try.

It’s taken three years to get the word out about New Bedlam. The songs are there, the sound is there, now we just need to get it into peoples’ ears.

Having some professionalism in our work ethic, staying on peoples’ asses, doing the live videos on Youtube is only going to help us.

The new EP is called Steady Diet of Bullshit … Clearly a Fugazi reference?

Yes! Tyler is a Fugazi nut. Originally, jokingly, we were going to call it Steady Diet Of Pizza, but that was too much. Obviously, Fugazi is a huge influence on us and we’ve covered “Merchandise” before. It’s that DIY ethic: If anyone’s ever seen a Fugazi show in person or on the internet, you’re going to church. You connect with it immediately when you’re watching those motherfuckers play. So the title was a clever way to give them a nod, and to signify that if you come to one of our shows, you’re going to leave with something new in your life.

I’m not on stage just because we’re some band on a bill. I’m here because we’ve culminated this with our homies, and wrote these songs to hopefully send you home in a way more positive mood than what you showed up with. We want it to be something that’s fun and exciting, something you hadn’t experienced before.

Let’s talk about some songs — “End Transmission”.

We had a bunch of songs in the can and everyone was like, “fuck it, let’s go record them.” At first, it didn’t make any sense to me when we recorded. But now, hearing them together, whatever the songs mean to the user makes sense. They all mean different things to me, they mean different things to the boys and the band. “End Transmission” is more personal. To me it’s about parents and childhood and shit like that.

The idea with Steady Diet Of Bullshit is something that me and you deal with every day. Something that everyone in Atlanta deals with everyday — the mound of bullshit you are constantly navigating to be happy, or to have a positive mental attitude, or just to keep your  bills paid. People relate to that because it’s everyday life.

“Lurch” is a heavier song. Some of the other songs on the record are more punk oriented. “Lurch” has got more atmosphere, but when we hit the chorus it still punches you in the gut. It’s about how we’re always trying to move forward so fast — society, technology. But my personal experience is that we’re just lurching in one way or another, trying to get through whatever.

As much as I love Fugazi, I never detected much of a sense of humor in the music. A lot of bands wear the Fugazi influence on their sleeve, but calling the album Steady Diet of Bullshit is a new approach … And it’s a funny way to pay homage.

Yes! And even with our other EPs, there’s always a cynical quality to the music. You could take some of the lyrics seriously, or not. There’s always a light side of me saying some pretty heavy shit. So naming it Steady Diet of Bullshit is my way, and the band’s way, of bringing humility to the music. We’re all pretty humble people, but we’re still vulnerable.

It’s refreshing to be in Atlanta, and to hear this level of anger in a newer band. Atlanta is the music scene that you’re part of, but these songs resonate with a bigger picture that’s aligned with Melvins or Unsane.

We were learning “Scrape” not too long ago, just to have a fun cover to play! Dude, that kind of feeling that you get from listening to Unsane is what we want — that’s us in a nutshell. The way it makes you feel when you listen to it — that nasty, knee-buckling shit — when you hear it, however you relate it to your world, we’re in the same boat. 100%

New Bedlam is (from left) Tyler Davis, Mike Walden, David Bair, and Michael Parrish. Photo by DJ Bing.

Part 2 of our conversation is coming soon.

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Record Plug: Warm Red

When you’re out and about this weekend, hitting up records stores, coffee shops, or just grabbing a beer somewhere, be sure to pick up a copy of the September issue of Record Plug Magazine.

For this issue, I had the chance to catch up with Warm Red before their show at the Earl a little earlier this month, and to talk about their debut album, Decades of Breakfast (State Laughter). Press play below.

Also, this issues features cool write ups on AthFest (Sept. 24-26), Skin Jobs, Entertainment, the upcoming Southern Surf Stompfest (Oct. 2), and a whole lot more.

The website is here, but print is where all of the stories live, and copies are strategically placed all around metro Atlanta and Athens. … I grabbed my copy at Drip Coffee in Hapeville, but I saw it at Wax-n-Facts and Wuxtry as well.

Keeping scrolling downward to read my Warm Red feature story, and check out those killer live shots courtesy of Mike White at Dead Designs photography.


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GUEST EDITOR: Tom Cheshire in conversation with Jordan Berardo of Golden Frown

Jordan Berardo aka Golden Frown.

Ladies and gentlemen this is Golden Frown, this dude has songs.

Jordan Berardo aka Golden Frown, sounds like Roky Erickson partying with Joey Ramone on certain nights, other nights he sounds like Jay Reatard partying with Neil Young. It doesn’t matter, because his songs always sound great. They sound like snippets of a psychopath and dreams of a child, and echoes in the desert. This is a very honest conversation we had on a Saturday morning.

Hope you enjoy. 

Tom Cheshire: Good Morning. 

Jordan Berardo: How you doing? Give me a minute. I just woke up, it’s a.m. Alabama time. 

What is a normal day for you these days? What do you do, what is the songwriting process. 

Life feels great these days. Every day I wake up feels like a gift. Making music is a gift, and I take advantage of it. Cleaning up my act was a gift. There’s no turning back now. My only goal is to be a musician, so when I wake up, I live and breathe music and writing songs.

Can you talk about your past, your drug use?

I’m very transparent about my past. No one is perfect. I started meds when I was 14. I started self medicating in 2000. I’ve made my mistakes, I’ve had my addictions. I died in 2007 from a methadone overdose and came back to life. I’ve died eight times because of my addiction. The last time I died was the beginning of my new life. I was on heroin. I got off it and all drugs and began my new life as a musician. I started writing songs. I use my past to help me with my songs. I will write 15 songs in a day some days, and I talk about my struggles, tell my life story.

Tell me about these songs. 

These songs aren’t love songs. They are what happen in my mind. They are stories I learned from. My music is a love song to the road, the romance of life.

Sounds like you’re in a relationship with your songs. 

I am. Nothing can touch you when you’re on the highway. No one can touch you when you’re in the moment, writing songs. My romance is the music. I’m in a relationship with my songs and with the road. I just sit down and the music just comes out of me.

Tell me about the lyrics. 

Well the lyrics are my story about my past, but I write them all freestyle off the cuff in the studio. I come up with the music on the guitar, that’s all written out. Then I get in the studio in front of the microphone and in five minutes I have a brand new song.

You’ve developed a wonderful working relationship with Peter Mavrogeorgis (Tav Falco’s Panther Burns, Twisty Cats) who is recording you and producing your record.

Peter has been amazing. We have a lot in common. We are both artists and eccentric. I love the way he works. He knows exactly what I need. He’s such a great musician and has such a great ear. We have a great system down, so why change it or fix it, if it works already. We have two albums done already and we are writing more.

Tell me about this record. When will it be out?

This will be a four-song EP and it’s coming out July 23. I am calling it Gone Are the Lemon Trees and I think it’s the best stuff I’ve written in my life. The title is a Kinks reference.

I love it and can’t wait for you to share it with the world. Anything else you want to share with our readers.

Everybody loves an underdog. Ruff Ruff Mother Fuckers, and that’s me. I’ve come out of the darkness and now I’m alive. My story is a second chance story. Please give me a chance, and listen to the songs. I’m going to continue writing songs every day, and perfect my craft, and hit the road and play these songs. Check me out, this dude has songs.

Thank you Jordan, and long live Golden Frown.

Golden Frown’s four-song EP Gone Are the Lemon Trees is out July 23.

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Teenage Bottlerocket’s Miguel Chen talks life after the pandemic, internet drama vs. the real world, and what’s in store with ‘Sick Sesh!’

TEENAGE BOTTLEROCKET: Kody Templeman (from left), Ray Carlisle, Darren Chewka, and Miguel Chen. Photo courtesy Fat Wreck Chords.

Teenage Bottlerocket is on the road again. Originally hailing from Laramie, Wyoming, the rapid-fire pop punk outfit is on the heels of releasing a new single, titled “Ghost Story.” Bass player Miguel Chen took a few minutes between gigs to talk about playing live punk rock shows as the pandemic winds down, the music’s power to unite people, and what’s in store with the group’s next record, Sick Sesh! (out August 27 via Fat Wreck Chords).

Were you nervous, or feeling anxiety about taking Teenage Bottlerocket out on the road while the pandemic is still winding down?

Absolutely, we felt nervous all around. Our first concern was how do we get back out there and do it in a safe way? And how do we do it without a lot of backlash? We worked with a lot of promoters trying to figure it out. Once that started to settle into place a second wave of anxiety came with this one particular show where we were giving a … let’s call it a discount. Essentially, tickets for the show were $1,000, but if you showed your vaccination card it was like $20.

Talk about a conversation starter!

Yeah, it was a crazy promotional thing, but it blew up. The next thing you know we’re being interviewed by CNN about it. We’re on the front page of Apple News, all of this crazy stuff. People just saw the headlines: “Teenage Bottlerocket,” “No Vax Tax.” That angered a lot of people. So we went on the news and tried to explain that it’s just this one show. There are many other shows doing different things. So yeah, definitely anxiety from all angles.

Honestly, though, this has probably been the smoothest running tour we’ve ever had. Turns out it was all imaginary stress and drama, or internet stuff that seemed so real. But when you get out into the real world, it’s just not there. 

That’s interesting to process. The internet has been everybody’s window to the world for like a year and a half. People have been stuck at home, staring at their phones and computers. All of the sudden “no vax tax” becomes the frontline.

That was just that one promoter’s idea. Obviously it worked well, that show sold out super fast, and everybody there was really happy. For us, if that’s how they want to put on a safe show, we’re all about it. But it turned into a whole big thing. 

Does it feel like audiences have been bottled up and are ready to just go nuts like never before?

A thousand percent, yes. And funny enough, the last real tour we did was a lot of these same cities. Lots of shows in Florida just before the pandemic shut everything down. We played Atlanta on that tour. And here we are, passing back through Florida, heading for Atlanta. For a lot of people we were the last show they saw before everything shut down. Now we’re the first show they’re seeing as everything opens up. 

Have you had epiphanes or realizations along the way about the dynamics or the value of getting out on stage and playing live punk rock shows again? 

Yeah, and it all connects back to what we were just talking about with the internet. There’s this space that exists within music, and particularly surrounding live music. On some level it reminds us that we’re not all as different as we think we are. We’re all connected in some really meaningful ways. And I think that this whole thing where everyone has existed on the internet for the last year and a half has deepened some divides and made people lose that common ground. I have the feeling that getting back to live music and live shows is going to heal that aspect, and help people realize that we’re all the same on some level. 

Have you noticed your audiences becoming more diverse?

We had one particular show in Tallahassee where we all noticed that the crowd was really young. Our band exists in a weird space between the old and the new. So we played this really awesome place in Tallahassee called the Bark; it’s  a really Queer-friendly, LGBTQ-friendly, and diverse collective, where we all recognized that we have these types of fans. We are lucky in that we didn’t get stuck with just like the punks who are stuck in the ‘90s. We’ve been embraced by the 2000s punks too! We talked with this one fan at that show—I’ve actually had this conversation two times this year—where they said, “I’ve been listening to you since I was nine or 10 years old because you’re my parents’ favorite band.” That’s really fun, but the younger generation will always inherently bring a bit more diversity, and hopefully that continues forever.

You have a new album, Sick Sesh!, out in August. Are these songs a product of how the band spent its time during quarantine, or were they in the works before everything went crazy?

We definitely had plans to do a record before everything went nuts. Our system has always been to do a record every two years. The plan was always to go into the studio late 2020 and release a record in 2021. It just kept getting shifted back because of all his stuff. Under the original timeline the record would already be out. But you can’t release a record if you can’t tour around it. So we sat on this thing for quite a while. Andrew and Jason at the Blasting Room remixed and remastered it quite a few times because I think they were just like us, bored without the usual workload. 

I’ve always thought of Teenage Bottlerocket as a band that’s super tight, super concise, shotgun blast-style songwriting. …  Point being there’s never anything in the way of the song. With so much time to work in the studio, did that affect the record? 

I think all of the extra time and effort went into stripping it down or making it a little more raw. A lot of bands, given that much time in post-production, might’ve gone the opposite direction: give it more polish, make it more radio friendly. Our approach was, “This sounds too clean. Tone back the production a little.”

I have found that the more time you spend stripping something down, the more you realize that, oftentimes, things that feel essential aren’t essential at all. As a journalist I’m always under pressure to cut, cut, cut. It’s a painful process, but once you have time to reflect you can see that there was too much in the way of what you’re trying to say.  

Do you watch Top Chef? I think about that a lot. The chefs who always kick ass are the ones who know how to edit themselves—take ingredients off the plate and present something simple, and do it well. This is Top Chef Bottlerocket. [laughs]

There is a new single out, called “Ghost Story.” Much of the press points out that you wrote the lyrics. Does the group have one principal songwriter, or is it generally a group effort?

Generally Ray writes the songs that he sings and Kody writes the song that he sings. Brandon would write a song once in a while. Over the last few years—since we lost Brandon—I’ve tried to step up a little more and bring songs to the table. I’ve got three on this record: One called “The Squirrel” and another called “Moving On.” Kody sings on one of them. Ray sings on two of them.

Is the band rolling out a lot of new songs on this tour?

We’re doing “Ghost Story” every night because, obviously, it was sort of intentional to release that song before going on tour, and people already seem to know it, which is a great feeling. We’re trying to play one other new song each night, which is fun for us. So many of the songs we’ve been playing for a long time. It’s nice to play new songs that are fresh and that we’re excited about. But the crowd wants to hear “Skate Or Die” or “Don’t Want To Go,” or “Radio,” things like that. So as much as part of me would love to do a show where it’s only the new record, you just can’t do that. 

How many songs do you power through each night?

I’d say we probably play 25 songs each night.

That’s a workout!

Yeah, but it’s our only workout, so we need this! 

While we’re talking about songs, when I hear “I Want To Be A Dog,” I am instantly thinking about Iggy Pop’s song, “I Wanna Be Your Dog.” These songs are polar opposites of each other, but was there intentional mirroring going on there? 

Tony wrote that song, and I’m sure there is. We’re all Iggy Pop guys. One time we played Riot Fest with Iggy Pop, and me and Ray saw him backstage. I was frozen—scared to do anything. Ray just puts his fist up in the air, and says, “Fuck yeah, Iggy!” And he gave us a fist bump back. We were both so pumped after that. 

But, yeah, I’m sure there’s a loose connection there. Obviously we tip our hats to our influences. You know “In The Basement,” back on “Warning Device,” is obviously like a Ramones song.

While I’m thinking about “I Want To Be A Dog,” I remember we filmed it and got the edit back, and there’s all these dogs taking a shit. We thought, “There is no way our publicist will let this fly. She’s going to shoot it down, make us edit it. So we hit the send button, and nervously waited for her reply.  She just wrote back, “I love it!” And that was it. The video was released. Then Erin, one of the owners of Fat Wreck Chords wrote, “I really could have done without all of the dog poop, guys.” So we’re all like, “Sorry …” [laughs].

That’s funny, but the more I’ve watched that video the less jarring it becomes. Plus anyone who owns a dog knows that’s what dogs do at the dog park. 

Yeah, you get desensitized to it pretty quickly. [laughs]

Teenage Bottlerocket and their Fat Wreck Chords labelmates MakeWar join Atlanta’s Breaux for an evening of outdoor music on the loading dock at Boggs Social & Supply. Thursday, July 1. $17 (adv). $20 (day of show). 7 p.m. (doors). 1310 White Street SW.

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Tears For the Dying evokes shocking, B-horror vibes with new single, ‘Mortuary’

Tears For the Dying‘s singer and multi-instrumentalist Adria Stembridge is living in Athens these days, methodically working with two new musicians—bass player Zakki Kartoffel and guitar player Morgona Widow—to solidify a new lineup. 

The group’s latest single, “Mortuary,” has been making the rounds since May. Stembridge tracked the single by herself earlier this year, but with lyrics such as “Nowhere to run, nowhere to hide, purified flesh chase you tonight. No eyes to see, just slash and dine, screams on dead ears, kill to survive! Screaming bodies in the mortuary. Screaming bodies in the laboratory,” it’s no less vexing in its creepy and death-afflicted goth-punk and metal imagery.

“I loved the main guitar riff but wanted to add an extra strings track that subtly alludes to the B-horror movie soundtrack technique of shocking the audience with a sharp musical stroke,” Stembridge says. “I feel like everyone is zombied out, given the huge number of zombie movies and shows over the past decade or so, but I haven’t heard many modern goth/deathrock bands explore the vibe in music.”

Stembridge worked with legendary March Violets guitarist-turned producer Tom Ashton (Vision Video, Entertainment, Hip To Death) at Subvon Studio in Athens to record multiple versions of “Mortuary.” One is a raw, guitars-only mix, and a third version is synths-only. Keep an eye out for different versions of the song to appear later this summer.

With the new lineup in place, Stembridge, who has handled much of the guitar and bass playing duties in the group, will now focus mainly on guitar and voice.

A new album is also in the works.

In the meantime, the group’s first show back from the pandemic is Fri., Aug. 13, at Flicker Bar in Athens. Tears for the Dying will also appear at the forthcoming VOTH (vegan goth food + dark music festival) on Oct. 15.

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Free Parking w/ Kevn Kinney returns Tuesday, June 22

Free Parking is back!

After taking a few weeks off to play some Drivin’ N Cryin’ shows in real life Kevn Kinney is back on the internet—back in the attic—this Tuesday, June 22, to perform a round of solo acoustic numbers, tell some stories, and maybe play a cover or two, maybe some new songs. Maybe some guests. … There are no rules here.

It’s free to watch, donations are accepted. Music starts at 8 p.m. Eastern and goes till about 10 p.m. Tune in via Drivin’ N ‘Cryin’s Facebook page and leave a whole bunch of ❤️ 👍 😂 ❤️ 👍 🤑 ❤️ in the comments.

If the virtual experience leaves you wanting more, and your up for a day trip, Kevn has some solo shows coming up in July.