Counting Down to Counterpoint 2012

If you read the first two parts of Rhett Shirley’s “Way Down Yonder on the Chattahoochee – A Preview of the Counterpoint Music Festival” (we hope you did, it’s hilarious and holds some essential advice for all fest-goers), you’ll know that he can’t wait to be at the inaugural Counterpoint Music Festival that’s taking place outside of Atlanta, Georgia this weekend. Counterpoint is a big deal for the city, the state, the Southeast, and the entire festival circuit. Rhett’s got a few more tips and suggestions for how to make your experience a good memory instead of a blurred one. General admission tickets are still available, as are their incredible VIP passes. Check out their site for more info and buy Rhett a drink if you see him. He’s earned it. –

I’m not really sure what happened to summer. All I know is that suddenly the weather has become crisp, and I’ve got a Pumpkin Spice candle on my coffee table as I write this. Department store brand, not Yankee Candle, sub par. Do not recommend. Usually I spend a month or so getting ready for festivals. I pack, then repack. I make a schedule of do not miss sets, then erase and rearrange half of it. I make a half dozen late night Wal–Mart runs for batteries, tarps, munchy food, and silly string. But time really has gotten away from me this time around, and I’ve found myself two days from my arrival at Counterpoint, with little to no planning done. It’s ok, I’ve done this a few times before. Just a quick run for water, cold cuts, hummus, and Cliff Bars, then I’ll toss my tent in the truck and hope I wasn’t too spun to remember to pack the tent poles after Wanee. The real deal is Counterpoint is upon us this weekend. It’s finally here.

But seriously, if you have found yourself behind, I will say there are a few must have items you should remember to bring.

1. Warm Clothes: The weather has changed quickly, and 60 degrees can feel pretty chilly after a summer of 100+ degree days. Utilize layers. Seriously.

2. Water: You can’t have enough. Even if you have more than you need, I guarantee you’ll encounter someone this weekend who could REALLY use some. Keep an extra bottle on hand and gain some easy karma. No, beer or whiskey are NOT substitutes.

3. A plan for rain: This includes a jacket, extra clothes / shoes, and extra, dry blankets or sheets in-case the rain fly didn’t make the trip with you. It’s not supposed to rain until Sunday, but still. If you don’t need them, build an awesome fort the last night.

4. Flashlight and batteries: It gets awful dark real early these days, and port o potties are full of awesome surprises.

5. Cash: Not everywhere takes card, especially at fests. ATM lines are long, and its easy to get mugged once someone sees you’re less than sober and just grabbed money out of your account. Also, if you throw enough money at a problem it tends to disappear pretty quick. Lock up the extra somewhere discrete in your car, and don’t let anyone you don’t trust know where it is.

Though I haven’t gotten my gear together, I did manage to peruse the Counterpoint website and preview all of the artists’ pages, videos, and audio. I will say that some of the selections they linked through the lineup page make no sense, nor are they very good. I won’t point out anything specific, but I hope this slip up doesn’t inhibit others from attending certain sets.

I also advised my girlfriend to do the same in her free time so I would know what she was wanting to see. She’s just as into hard rock and angsty alternative as I am into EDM, so I figured this would be interesting. Here’s a quick list of groups we both found interesting:

Zed’s Dead

The first group that came up when I asked her what she was excited to see was Zed’s Dead. I was actually pretty surprised at first. But after I went back over their stuff I realized they put out a lot of really well produced, approachable stuff. They’ve experienced with multiple genres as well, so that keeps things diverse and interesting. Check out this mix they released for Plastician’s radio show. It explores moombahton, and dubstep, with a heavy influence on atmospheric, melodic vibes.

I will say that I’m extremely excited she put Big Gigantic on her short list, as I adore them. Also, there’s something really sexy about a girl who hums sax solos while doing her homework in the morning. This video is a testament to the energy and quality of performance I’ve come to expect from them. They also just sold out their Rowdy Town event which will be taking place at Red Rocks.

Emancipator will be a great escape from the high intensity, face blasting sets that will dominate this fest. The changing seasons really have set the stage for some of these downtempo artists to shine. I’ve yet to see him live, but I expect a gorgeous journey through immaculately constructed beats.


I really don’t know what to say about this group. I neglected to check out the Rhythm Monks until recently, and I’m at a loss to describe them. They kind of remind me of the knights from the Monty Python movies, but with light sabers and drums… and giant floating heads. Just, watch. They win the award for ‘WTF’.

Best website design goes to local boys Reptar. I was genuinely confused when I first visited, but in the end I had a lot of fun exploring the layout. I hope some of this attitude translates into their live performance. I won’t give anything away, you should check it out for yourself.

I hope I’ve helped enhance your Counterpoint 2012 experience and that you’re looking forward to being there as much as I am. See you soon and expect plenty of updates.

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