November 29, 2017

Sparkling Sounds From Faster Circuits, and More Music News

Threats and Promises

Photo Credit: Mike White

Faster Circuits

MAPS AND LEGENDS: Orange Twin Records will release the new album by Faster Circuits this week, and you can throw your hands in the air and wave ’em like you just don’t care when the band plays the 40 Watt Club with Yallweh Thursday, Nov. 30. This new album is named Apophenia and features a veritable cast of stars supporting founder Derek Almstead’s vision. Almstead (Olivia Tremor Control, Elf Power) is joined by Jeff Tobias (Sunwatchers), Jamey Robinson (Need New Body), Carlton Owens (Cracker), AJ Griffin (Laminated Cat, French Exit), Chris Herron and Emily Growden. Though this record’s provenance is completely secure in its pop-psych bona fides, it doesn’t quite follow in the family tradition, so to speak. It has moments of sparkling beauty (“Shallow Waves”) and Floyd-ish desolation (“Culmination”), and is much better as a whole than the sum of its parts. It’s gonna take a few more listens for me to fully absorb it, but so far, all signs point to “yes.” Check it out at

ACQUAINTANCES AND FRIENDS: The second annual Local Indie Record Label Fair & Showcase will happen Saturday, Dec. 2 at Little Kings Shuffle Club. The fair, which is free, runs from noon to 5 p.m., and the performances, which will run ya five bucks, happen from 8 p.m.–2 a.m. The whole shebang is presented by Athens Popfest and Southern Brewing Co. Labels represented this year are HHBTM, Marching Banana, Null Zone, Cloud, Orange Twin, Perfect Attendance, Plus 100, Smokecloud and Teen Sleuth. Featured performers for the label showcase are HHBTM’s Antlered Aunt Lord, Perfect Attendance’s Dimmen, Cloud’s John Fernandes, Null Zone’s Michael Potter and Plus 100’s Vaperror.

AROUND THE SUN: Longtime Athens promoter Michelle Roche, of Michelle Roche Media Relations, will celebrate her birthday with a show at Hendershot’s Coffee Bar Thursday, Nov. 30. Featured performers include Athens legend Dana Downs performing with Jacob Cona, Mobile, AL’s Abe Partridge, Charlotte, NC’s Sinners & Saints and The Welfare Liners from here in Athens. Things get going at 7 p.m., and it’ll run ya $7 for admission. For more information on Roche and what she does, see

WHEN YOU TIRE OF ONE SIDE, THE OTHER SERVES YOU BEST: The aforementioned Null Zone Records’ head Michael Potter will celebrate, in a very low-key way, the release of a new split-cassette release with Frank Hurricane Friday, Dec. 1 at Hendershot’s. Although Hurricane will not perform this night, attendees will be treated to Potter opening for Asheville, NC’s Sarah Louise (House and Land), who Potter says is his “absolute favorite guitarist right now.” The tape he’s releasing, Cigarette Museum, is 10 tracks long, with Hurricane taking up nine of them. As such, it’s totally packed full of the storyteller’s semi-psychedelic folk tunes, indie rapping, piano melodies and other hodgepodge things. On paper, that sounds terrible, doesn’t it? Weirdly, in one’s ears it’s not bad at all, and I enjoyed it. Potter’s single track is a cool, out-to-sea kinda breezy experiment circling around a couple of different simple guitar riffs. The show begins promptly at 8 p.m. and should end by 11. Bring five bucks. Check this all out at

LIKE A BUTTERFLY WING: Dr. Arvin Scott and Widespread Panic’s Domingo “Sunny” Ortiz will host Beat the Drum at Nuçi’s Space Sunday, Dec. 3 from 3:30–5:30 p.m. This event is a benefit for both Nuçi’s Space and Scott’s long-running Drumming for Success program, which teaches youth life skills for academic and personal achievement through drumming. This workshop is interactive, accepts all skill levels, and everyone is encouraged to bring a drum or percussive instrument with them if they want. Minimum donation is $8.

COLLAPSE INTO NOW: A new set of tripped-out recordings by Space Brother is named Mountains (stylized as /V\0u|\|T/\I|\|S) and features two tracks. The first, supported by dubby drums and cycling through easy-going carnivalia to near-space bliss to everything dropping out, is named “Pawn” (|>/\W|\|). The second, “Dive” (|}\I\/E|}\), is much more meditative, but not in any traditional sense. Its samples flow in and out, its beats disappear and reappear, and ultimately, the whole thing feels like a dream. But it’s a very stylized dream, so the fashion-forward among you should be edified by heading to and listening in.