I WANT SOME DISCIPLINE IN HERE: Monty Greene, one of the founding fathers of what could be described as the early Athens industrial music scene, is the July 2022 Artist in Residence at Athens Institute for Contemporary Art (i.e. ATHICA). Known by many for his work with Nerve Clinic and Damage Report, Greene is an accomplished video artist, and during his residency he will develop and present the video installation “Quarantined Apparitions.” You may have correctly discerned from its title that this work was created during the pandemic, but what you might not know is that Greene was among the first in the popular culture scene, as it were, to present any pandemic-based work when he released the COVID-themed music video Gray Clouds at the very beginning of March 2020. It features citizen-shot footage of police crackdowns in Wuhan, China and other disturbing footage. The opening event for his residency is Friday, July 8 at 7 p.m. Additional viewings occur on Saturdays, July 9, 16, 23 and 30 from 3:30–6 p.m. An additional weeknight viewing happens Thursday, July 21 from 6–9 p.m. For more information, please see athica.org/updates/greene.
TOP OF THE MORNING, SUNSHINE: By the time you read this, popsmith Drew Beskin will have released his newest single “Spoilers.” The track is from his upcoming album Somewhere Sideways Same As You. The album marks the debut of Beskin with his new band The Sunshine, too. The single is a short, sweet number that draws authentically on such classic acts as The Beatles and Big Star. With a running time of merely two minutes sixteen seconds it’s just enough to whet one’s whistle in anticipation of more. Find this on all major streaming services as well as drewbeskin.bandcamp.com. For more information, please see facebook.com/DrewBeskin and drewbeskin.com.
THE GANG’S ALL HERE: Experimental-compositional combo The Modern Lamps stretched out its family tree for its latest release, Kudzu Crown. The two-track, 40-minute release features—in addition to mainstays Rachel and Grant Evans—blithely casual first name-only entries of Rashaun (clarinet), Leslie (percussion), Frank (guitar) and Ανώνυμος (which means anonymous) on bouzouki, baglamas and contrabass balalaika. It’s been said that collaborations of this type can help musicians “get out of their own head,” so to speak, and jettison limitations they may have unwittingly enforced on their work. I can’t attest 100% that this is the case here, but there’s a certain openness and breath to the first track “Teadrum (Flower Yoga)” that isn’t dissimilar to, say, The Grateful Dead’s most meditative work. The second track, “Heavy Satori,” brings the group back into the familiar dark envelope of sound drone, light reprieve and quick descent into cataclysm at its end. Kudzu Crown is available digitally and in micro batches of cassettes (edition of 25) and CD-R (edition of 30). Find this at hookervision.bandcamp.com.
WALK THIS WAY: Releasing this news right in the middle of AthFest may have captured exactly the timeliness that the Athens Cultural Affairs Commission presumably sought, but there’s also probably at least a few of you who missed it. So, the news is the announcement of the 2022 inductees into the Athens Music Walk of Fame. These decisions are never easy, and I can only assume that there was a lot of conversation surrounding these choices. This year’s inductees are Bloodkin, Tituss Burgess, Love Tractor, Ishues and The Glands. The Athens Music Walk of Fame is an ongoing effort to recognize and amplify each artist’s unique contribution to Athens music. For more information on the Walk of Fame and the Cultural Affairs Commission, please see athensculturalaffairs.org.
UNTIL THEY CLOSE THE CURTAIN: The 1st Annual Aquemini Music Festival will happen at Southern Brewing Co. Sunday, Sept. 4. Presented by Aubrey Entertainment and Aquemini 28 Entertainment this event, created by Knowa Johnson (United Group of Artists), is “designed to encourage diversity in Athens, Georgia, and surrounding cities while empowering black and minority creators to continue to strive for excellence in their lives and selected industry.” To this end, the festival lineup features—among others—Natty Lovejoy Band (Tennessee), Aquatic Soul Band (Athens), Candy Morgan & Charlie Beatz, Diamond Elyse (Atlanta), Kanela & The GSG Band (Aiken, SC), M Lewis (Atlanta), Splitz Band (Athens) and Misnomer Band (Atlanta/Athens). Performances will be spread across two stages, there is to be a live DJ, vendors, food, a fashion showcase and more. A “Fun Zone,” courtesy of Rucker Family Amusements, will also be on site. Aquemini 28 Entertainment is also the company behind the current run of Afro-Caribbean First Fridays at The Soundtrack. Tickets for the festival are not yet on sale, but interested attendees, potential vendors and potential sponsors are encouraged to call 678-740-3884 for more info.
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