Day 2 of Wrecking Ball didn’t start until after 1 PM, so people had ample chance to recover in spite of the after parties. The early day belonged to bands on the outdoor Music Park Stage and the Heaven Stage. Early bands such as Yuck, and and Basement woke kids out of their stupors. Fans who showed up early got a treat seeing Mutoid Man’sStephen Brodsky pull double duty later on with legends Cave In. Another highly anticipated group was the return of Glassjaw in only their second show back in action. They really brought it back with their set chock full of hits. Other early bands of note included Girlpool, the excellent Appleseed Cast, and screamo legends Thrice. Later on Desparecidos and American Nightmare brought the swelling crowds at witnessing their respective sets to their knees. American Nightmare in particular has been killing it live and tonight was no exception. Finally Coheed And Cambria closed the night in epic fashion. Wrecking Ball, we are already looking forward to next year. Thanks again to Boston Chuck Photograpyfor the great shots from a packed photo pit!
The crowd outside Wrecking Ball, by Boston Chuck Photography
With destination concert events being the next big thing, every city is trying to come up with an even to put them on the map. Atlanta has pulled off an impressive start with the first annual Wrecking Ball at the venerable Masquerade venue. Judging by the success with the lineup and the response from the crowd, we have every reason to believe this fest will be a round for years to come. Even though if you Google the fests name, you still get that silly girl Miley and her video, the fest unironically had their own wrecking ball too, with people doing the Miley pose in jest. And the bands on day one wrecked the stage and had fans from all over wrecking their bodies in the Atlanta summer heat to the mostly punk rock extravaganza. Descendents may be long time veterans of the scene, but they performed with more energy than most bands half their age. Judge brought the old-school beatdown sensability. The heady minds in Failure were an anomaly on the bill, but a welcome one that added to the diversity of it. Their new album The Heart Is A Monster (InResidence) is killer. Back to the punk side of things Modern Life is War, The Get Up Kids, TheMovieLife, SamIAm, and Title Fight all brought it big time. Pianos Become The Teeth is another band that had their own crowd on hand for this show. The outdoor stage added a real specialness to this event, and those bands seemed to really relish the true fest feels. Shot here for Ghost Cult by Boston Chuck Photography, day one of Wrecking Ball more than set the tone for the rest of the weekend. Day 2 coverage coming soon!
Descendents, by Boston Chuck Photography
Failure, by Boston Chuck Photography
Judge, by Boston Chuck Photography
Modern Life Is War, by Boston Chuck Photography
Pianos Become The Teeth, by Boston Chuck Photography
The Wrecking Ball ATL has announced their lineup, taking place on August 8-9, 2015 at The Masquerade in Atlanta, GA.
Coheed And Cambria Descendents Thrice Desaparecidos Glassjaw The Get Up Kids American Nightmare The Lawrence Arms The Movielife Title Fight Judge Basement Samiam Braid Yuck The Appleseed Cast Modern Life Is War Cave In Knapsack Blacklisted Pianos Become The Teeth Frankie Cosmos The World Is A Beautiful Place And I Am No Longer Afraid To Die Small Brown Bike Their/They’re/There You Blew It! Foundation Girlpool Old Gray The Coathangers Make Do And Mend Beach Slang Cayetana Brick + Mortar Criminal Instict Superheaven Pet Symmetry Somos Mutoid Man Sorority Noise Bellows Adventures Microwave Big Jesus The Weaks Told Sland Spraynard Petal Slingshot Dakota Free Throw Blis. Halfling West Point Northbound
Capitol Hill Block Party has announced the first wave of performers confirmed for the 2015 edition, scheduled for July 24-26, 2015 in Seattle, WA. The lineup includes:
2015 PARTIAL LINEUP RATATAT TV On The Radio The Kills Toro Y Moi Built to Spill The Julie Ruin Broods Wye Oak Flatbush Zombies Jamie XX Giraffage Shabazz Palaces DIIV Com Truise Deafheaven Wet Shannon And The Clams Unknown Mortal Orchestra The Flavr Blue Sam Lachow BADBADNOTGOOD Lower Dens Protomartyr Daktyl The Coathangers Meatbodies Chastity Belt Ambassadeurs Lost Lander Kite String Tangle The Wooden Sky Smokey Brights Industrial Revelation Kinski Crater One Above None Below Slow Bird Zoolab
Fans will be able to enjoy a diverse lineup of local and national musical acts across three days and five stages. Three-day passes are available for $99 through April 2; for $125 between April 3 and July 4; and for $150 beginning July 5. VIP tickets will also be available for $250 and will include limited edition apparel, access to the outdoor VIP beer garden with hosted snacks and beverages, a CHBP poster, and gifts from the sponsors.
The full musical lineup and single day pass prices and availability will be announced in early June. Details regarding the visual arts program, creative installations, digital activities and more will be announced at a later date.
The evolution that Mastodon began almost fifteen years ago, continues in 2014 as they prepare to drop their newest album. Along the way there have been few easy roads taken, and any battles won were well-earned on their climb to success. Certainly no one who started out with the band in their early days would have predicted where they would be today as a major international headliner, but this is where they are. As the band has grown they have picked up some new fans along the way who seemed to click with the newer, psychedelic rock vibes of their last few albums, while some die-hard lovers of their sludgy early forays have abandoned ship. That was bound to happen. If you stopped liking this band around the time of Crack The Skye, Once More Around The Sun (Reprise) will likely not see you make a return. However, if you have followed their entire oeuvre from the start and stayed, or came in as of late, this album has your name all over it.
Feeling like an erstwhile greatest hits album of tracks you have never heard before, there is a familiarity to the songs on Once More…. that calls to mind the best moments of the bands’ career. Even if it wasn’t intended, it has an odd effect on the listener. On one hand there is a comfort to this, like “Oh hey! I remember when they did that before!” The other effect is when the band goes back outside of the box yet again, it seems even a little more way out than before. Not every band can pull this off mind you, but the guys in Mastodon learned from their idols (mainly Neurosis and The Melvins) how to break down the machine of creativity, and build it back up again like few other modern bands do. For better or worse they always reinvent themselves slightly with each new outing and they do it selfishly, not the fans or their label. Take that for what it’s worth, this is what they do best.
And now for the music. When the band said earlier in the year that this album was a continuation of 2012’s The Hunter, they weren’t kidding. Although this album is a little less fuzzy and bright sounding than its forerunner, there is a ton of catchy prog and stoner grooves on this album to satisfy. The middle eastern-tinged guitars that open ‘Tread Lightly’ actually remind me of the opening of the Jonah Hex movie soundtrack Mastodon did a few years ago. This brief intro gives way to a driving rock anthem with some urgency. Bassist Troy Sanders and his dusky vocals dominate the track. So slick changes in the pre-chorus and bridge are typical of most Mastodon’s better releases. As usual, about ¾ of the way through the track BrentHinds and Bill Kelliher just go to town with layers of neat guitar parts. With almost no let up, ‘The Motherload’, also rocks. Drummer Brann Dailor’s lead vocals are stunning, the way they were in ‘Oblivion’. They knocked me out of my seat, as does his entire performance here. Impossibly, he continues to get better and better all around, every time. The first single ‘High Road’ comes next and in the context of the first two tracks, its welcome grooves bring us back down to earth a little bit. Totally obtuse and weird, the title track will leave your jaw agape. It definitely calls to mind Remission and Leviathan(both Relapse), but also has the prog factor of their recent work too. I was also surprised by the track’s brevity too, but for once the band of high-minded idealists gives you the Cliff’s Notes. And if it hasn’t set in by now, the concept of this album is time, life, and loss, and acceptance; as these are the things marking the lives of the Mastodonians for the last few years.
‘Chimes At Midnight’ has a touch of the old Mastodon in its DNA too. Fabulous string skipping guitar riffs, tribal beats and stellar vocals comprise the track. By now, the three-headed KingGhidorah monster vocals of Sanders, Hinds, and Dailor can rival any band for their ability to bring a variety of chops to the table. ‘Chimes…’ also has a musical and lyrical call-out to fan favorite ‘Hearts Alive’, which may explain why that song returned to the set list on their last US tour. Meanwhile ‘Asleep In the Deep’ mines some new ground melodically, while going with some staple song structures: call and response like vocals, and a nautical beat. Hinds just glows on this one, with his soulful crooning in full effect.
‘Feast Your Eyes’ is a raucous feeling song with a lot of twists and turns, but left me a bit flat as a trying-too-hard progressive/psychedelic rock tune. ‘Aunt Lisa’ was shaping up to be one of the best tracks on the album until the clunky ending gang vocals just made me cold. The Coathangers do the cheerleader-esque chant, but I feel this is better left to Faith No More and even Marilyn Manson; and adds some unnecessary schlock value to an otherwise good song. These represent the only less than par moments of the record for me.
Returning to form, ‘Ember City’ is transcendent, and a special song in the band’s history. When they do everything right, this band can give you chills. This is a great song on every level and I hope they add it to the set list when they tour behind this album. ‘Halloween’ follows quickly with yet another, killer fast song with great signing, baddass solos and basically a lot of head-banging material. ‘Diamond In The Witch House’ is another collaboration with Scott Kelly of Neurosis, once again it’s a marriage made in hell. Troy and Scott trade vocals in a way that just contrasts the other so perfectly, you wonder why Scott doesn’t just join this band already too, until you remember he has two other bands. The song itself is excellent and almost would be a more fitting title track for OMATS.
While still lacking the fierceness of their earlier rage-fests, the new Mastodon album is definitely worth a listen if you can forgive them their emotive, proggy trespasses.