Because I grew up 20 minutes away from where Daniel Hutchens and Eric Carter are from in West Virginia, I’m morally obligated to love Bloodkin. Even though most of their tunes can be described as Black Crowes-lite, I still get a kick out of hearing great made-for-radio pop. From their grey hair to the way they hold their instruments, you can tell that the guys in Bloodkin are veterans. The band took the stage right at 4:30 p.m. and busted out a solid hour of tunes from their almost 20-year career.
AthFest ain’t just about the music, folks. I scored tickets to a screening of the documentary Muscle Shoals earlier in the week. Although I had already had a ton of fun during the weekend, I’d be lying if I said that I wasn’t looking forward to this seeing film more than checking out the bands I had seen thus far.
On the Pulaski Street Stage, Atlanta's Ruby Velle and the Soulphonics turned in a workmanlike R&B set. Velle has a pleasantly gritty voice, and her band has chops, but ultimately it was soul-by-numbers with no real emotion beyond poster-ready platitudes about believing in yourself and following your dreams.
For a cynic like me, the antidote to all that positivity was a block away, at Caledonia's un-officially-sanctioned Dirty Athens day party, because there's nothing like moody punk and post-rock on a beautiful afternoon.
Editor's Note: New Athens resident Adam Barnett is exploring AthFest all weekend long and chronicling his impressions for Flagpole in a series titled Who the Hell Are These Bands?
Photo Credit: Adam Barnett
“Adam Hartbrayker Barnett.” Remember that name, because it’s getting more and more famous by the day. Last night, I recognized four people, and they acknowledged me with at least three minutes of small talk, each. One of them pointed out that my sleeveless shirt and glasses combination differentiates me from the normal Caledonia attendee. What can I say? I’m just a hot bro new to a warm city.
Here’s part two of my Saturday:
Everyone hangin’ in there? Sunscreen applied and adequately hydrated? Okay, good.
If you got plenty of rest Friday night and were brave enough to make your AthFest experience an all day affair Saturday, you had plenty of stuff to choose from. I missed the tacos, but a friend reported that Sr. Sol catered some pretty badass food to the New West Records party over at 399 Meigs. Buxton, New Madrid and Daniel Romano wound up playing some great sets over at Normaltown Hall. I’ve been to that place over on Meigs now a few times and I’m getting the feeling that it is the best-kept open secret in town. If you haven’t been, I highly recommend you check out the venue the next time they host a show.
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