Did the Old Lady say it was hot, last time there was a show at the Elder House in Valdosta, GA?
Tonight was savagely hot. The Elder House sweated, and stunk, and smoked.
John Weeks stepped up when one of the scheduled bands flaked out. John puts out a big sound for one man and a guitar, with a heaping helping of angst in his lyrics. This was his last acoustic set; he promises he’ll be back in September with a full band. Stay tuned. Meanwhile, you can sample his acoustic history at http://www.reverbnation.com/johnweeksplays
In Life’s Wake is also in transition; after tonight a couple of the guys are moving on to other places. Tonight’s grinding set sent them off in fine style. Good luck, boyz! They’ve left a legacy for us to remember them by at https://www.facebook.com/InLifesWake/app_2405167945
Seems that Elder House is in transition too. The band Hall of the Elders is losing at least one member, and the future of this venue is up in the air. Everything changes, nothing remains the same, but it’s all okay kids.
SUPPORT LIVE MUSIC, NO MATTER WHO THE HELL IS PLAYING. Listen to the Old Lady!
Valdosta, in extreme south Georgia, July, nighttime. Temp: about 90 degrees Fahrenheit. Humidity: about 90 percent.
Red Door Records. Free show. Thanks, Jessica. Love the new location; the parking lot scene is much more urban and better lit.
First up: The Caution Children, from north Florida. Singer: “This one’s in the key of F, it runs about 5 minutes and 30 seconds, and it’s got a couple of time signature changes.” They play melodic ambient hardcore, and he does some interesting things with the mic and with one of the guitar players’ heads. Listen to them here: https://myspace.com/thecautionchildren/music/songs
Next: Gillian Carter, also from Florida, more hardcore than melodic. They call themselves post punk. I guess that’s pretty accurate. A sample: https://myspace.com/gilliancarter
The afterparty was at the Ashley Street Bar, which of course is now on Baytree Road. Cody Gibson was playing when the Old Lady walked in, high powered country. She couldn’t find any links to his music other than with the Southern Gentlemen, and they weren’t in attendance tonight just some dude named Kevin on keyboards who was very good.
Then Mylo Ranger, with a big multilayered alt-country-rock sound that occasionally slid into blues. The same Kevin that played keyboards with Cody Gibson joined them on sax, and again was very good. Who is this guy? Hear Mylo Ranger at http://www.myloranger.com/#!music/c10tw
SUPPORT LIVE LOCAL MUSIC. IF YOU DON’T GO, IT WILL GO AWAY.
Another hot summer night at the Old Lady’s favorite house venue in Valdosta, Elder House. Another crammed lineup. Another stoked crowd.
It just doesn’t get much better than this.
Hot Barrel 45 got the ball rolling with originals that are intricate, both melodically and rhythmically, as well as heavy.
Artifacts threw some slamming hardcore at an in-your-face audience.
The host band, Hall of the Elders, was impeccable as always.
In Life’s Wake ground out some major metal.
Meridian, a hardcore band from New York, wrapped up the show just before midnight.
Meridian’s lead singer gave a shout out to Reese, one of the Valdosta kids, who responded to a desperate Tweet and let the band crash at his place.
This is what the Old Lady really likes about this local metal scene: these people really care about each other, and take care of each other. The music may sound raw and mean, but there’s love in this scene, y’know what I mean?
“DO THE THINGS THAT MAKE YOU HAPPY, OTHERWISE YOU WIND UP WORKING FOR SOMEBODY ELSE’S DREAMS!”
The lead singer for Nebraska Bricks was screaming it, and everybody at Elder House was doing it!
Hot summer nights are made for hardcore shows in the cramped quarters of Elder House.
Carrier kicked it off; they’re sorta south-Georgia local since they’re from Columbus and have been on tour with Nebraska Bricks for 35 days. You’d think these guys would be fried by now, but oh no! They’re ready to go! And go they did! “Just some gnarly, sweaty dudes” they say, but if you can’t savor the sweat in person then listen to a free sample at https://www.facebook.com/CarrierBand/app_178091127385
Nebraska Bricks came on like a ton of their namesake bricks (their name comes from the title of a track on an album by Save the Day). HOLD ON TO YOUR TRUTH! the singer shouted, then took hold of his own with both hands and slung it around the tiny room! Their upcoming record is titled LIVE IN PAIN, DIE IN VAIN, but if you just can’t wait you can download their album REDEMPTION for free at https://www.facebook.com/CarrierBand/app_178091127385 Free, folks, that means no charge!
Strengthen What Remains rolled in town in a rented minivan just in time for their set. These guys are hitting the road for a several weeks’ long tour and their van immediately broke down in Tampa. Still they showed up, no whining just killing it as they shared their tunes from the album TURNING A BLIND EYE which you can check out gratis (that’s another synonym for free) at https://www.facebook.com/strengthenwhatremains/app_204974879526524
Then finally, the band the Old Lady has been waiting for! Machinist doesn’t play locally much, they’re pretty much a touring band since only lead singer Jeff Hill lives in Valdosta. And the homeboys hit home hard with their short fast to-the-point songs, even though by now Elder House was about a zillion degrees hot and the storm kept blowing the power out and Jeff had been working the door all night as well as spending weeks pulling this show together. Get their albums digitally at http://machinistga.bandcamp.com/ and order the BIRTHRIGHT 7″ at http://constantrotation.bigcartel.com/ or listen to the METHTEETH album for nuthin’ (that means free, too; shouldn’t you have paid more attention to your English professor?) on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/machinistga/app_204974879526524
Jeff is a guy who DID pay attention to his English professor.
And, he’s probably the hardest working musician in town. He plays, he promotes, he puts together shows… and he does it for the same reason they all do it, because he loves the music.
Machinist is fixing to go on tour. If you didn’t turn up for this show, you missed out big time and you just ought to mail them a check to help make sure they eat while on the road. Or hand the cash to Jeff; you can find him most nights working the door at Ashley Street Station.
All four of the bands on this show played for pretty much no more than gas money. They do this because they love to play, they’d probably do it even if they had to pay to play!
SUPPORT LIVE LOCAL MUSIC! IF YOU DON’T SHOW UP THEN YOU ARE JUST PRETENDING TO BE A FAN! LISTEN TO THE OLD LADY!
A pleasant Monday evening in Valdosta, Georgia. Five great bands. A buncha fans crammed into a makeshift venue. One fucking awesome evening of live music.
It just doesn’t get any better than this.
Elder House, about which the Old Lady has blogged before (see http://www.oldladyandpurpledragon.com/music-man/ ), hosted a show tonight with (in order of appearance): Dead Southern Bishop, Hoffa HQ, Moirae, Hall of the Elders, and Encased in Ice.
Dead Southern Bishop: sorta local (“They’re from Alma,” he said, “but I’m from around here”), kicked off the evening with a crash and a bang. Awesome.
Hoffa HQ: a shirtless sweaty bass player. Melodic metal from a lead guitar guy wearing earplugs. ‘Nuff said. Awesome.
Moirae: head banging metal, with some swingy odd bits reminiscent of Robert Fripp on Elephant Talk (from the Discipline album with King Crimson). A drummer who looks like Frank Zappa’s bastard son (“All right!” he responded, “He was a down motherfucker!”). Awesome!
Hall of the Elders: the Old Lady’s new favorite band. AWESOME! The singer with the dreads is a formidable slam dancer. And to the guy that apologized for knocking the Old Lady to the floor: fuggedaboudit! The Old Lady understands that standing on the edge of the mosh pit is high risk behavior.
Encased in Ice: just a buncha kids, but boy can they play. Awesome!
Look for all these bands on Facebook. Watch for all these bands at a venue near you.
If you think Valdosta is some backwater, backwoods, backwards south Georgia cultural sinkhole, you need to listen to the Old Lady:
To wit: one Friday night, four great musical experiences.
Let us begin at the beginning, at The Elder House which is a garage apartment near VSU. The downstairs has been converted into a small music hall or, more accurately, a rec room with a stage. We will not discuss the décor, or lack thereof. We are here for the music.
First up, REALIZATION from just up the road: Albany, Georgia. As the lead singer informs us, they are a “crossover hard-core band” and the emphasis is on “hard.” The Old Lady hasn’t seen a singer work that hard – for free! – in quite some time. When the music starts, this is a crazy man! With bearded face and bulging eyes, he breaks a sweat two minutes in and from there on it was Katy bar the door! Four guys onstage, twelve people in the audience… REALIZATION fills up the corners with blasting speakers and screaming lyrics.
Next up, a solo act. Billed by the promoter (translation: the guy who lives upstairs) as The Sarah Beth Experience, she says she’s “just a chick who does covers on the ukulele.” Correction: this chick ROCKS the ukulele! The Old Lady loves her cover of Amy Winehouse’s Valerie, followed by Katy Perry’s The One That Got Away. Sarah Beth informs us that: “If Katy Perry didn’t exist, I wouldn’t be living in Georgia… it’s this weird internet thing, I don’t want to go into it.” Well, the Old Lady knows a tease when she hears one, so afterwards she demands to hear “the rest of the story” as Paul Harvey says. The Old Lady is not a spoiler; if you want to know, ask Sarah Beth. She’s the one with the ukulele.
Last onstage (the show had to end by 11, the chick with the red hair told one band member; “last time we ran past 11 and got shut down.” Damn neighbors; don’t they know art when they hear it?) is NORTHBOUND, a band which is actually southbound after a nine-day tour (“Donations please!” pleaded one guitar player/singer, “we’re going to Disney World tomorrow! Help us get back home to Miami!”). Then the band proceeds to blow the Old Lady away, and for nothing more than gas money. These guys don’t play for the money, they play because that’s what they do, they love it and they are damn good at it. NORTHBOUND has a new release… duh, that’s why they’re touring… and you can hear it at http://northboundfl.bandcamp.com/ but it won’t sound quite as good as LIVE and in your face at The Elder House! If you missed this show, you are a dweeb! LISTEN to the Old Lady!
Three bands. Three hours of great music. And all it costs the Old Lady is some gas money for the boys in the band. Oh yeah, and a coupla beers but they were a gift and she has them stashed in a cooler in the Golden Dragon outside.
So it’s only 11 and the Old Lady’s favorite dive bar, Ashley Street Station, is on the way home so she stops in to see whassup.
Whassup is the West Virginia Slims, a rockabilly band with swagger that the Old Lady has reviewed before (see http://www.oldladyandpurpledragon.com/the-great-guinness-toast/ ). This night they include a Spanish-flavored song, an original titled Lonely Trumpet , with sadly sweet riffs that seriously brings the Old Lady to tears, good tears, the ones that come when she hears something that’s so damn lovely she can’t hardly stand it. One of’em tells the Old Lady “I hope you give us a glowing review!” Are you freakin’ kidding??? She already said they’re great; what more can she say? Just this: go see’em!