scooterbabe w/WANDA, 100 Watt Horse & more – 1/24 – World Famous – Athens, GA
It’s rare that every artist on a five-band bill possesses overwhelming talent and compatibility. With those numbers, one can frequently anticipate a new group flexing their musical muscles in the opening slot or a black sheep booked to draw a diverse crowd. That’s why The Blue Indian was overjoyed by the announcement that Athens’ Scooterbabe, WANDA, and Penny Lame would be sharing a bill at their hometown’s World Famous on Sunday, January 24 with Moses Nesh (Atlanta) and 100 Watt Horse (Atlanta/Olympia/Nashville), who released one of our favorite albums of 2015, Everything’s Alright Forever and Forever and Forever and Thankyou Thankyou Thankyou Amen. Spanning a range of rock, pop, and folk styles, Sunday night’s buzzworthy show is sure to deliver a dose of both the familiar and brand new.
Scooterbabe, the evening’s headliner, is currently tracking new material written by singer/guitarist JJ Posway during his time in New York and subsequent return to Georgia a few months ago. Posway says that these songs, which follow 2015’s standalone single, “I Want To Write Your Name Across The Sky in Big Clumsy Strokes,” “sound like a natural progression” from that track. “Tone-wise and lyrically, I wanted every song to be steeped in emotion, to be as grand as possible without being cheesy. I’d say they’re as inspired by the unabashed grandiosity of Springsteen, Los Campesinos! and M83 as they are by our favorite (more introspective) jangle pop, pop punk and emo bands,” says Posway. But new tunes aren’t the only thing Scooterbabe will be debuting Sunday night; a few fresh faces will be joining the lineup, including multi-instrumentalist/singer Evan Tyor, who’s helped flesh out and record this latest batch of songs, as well as a new drummer, Jesse Lafian.
Fellow locals WANDA complement Scooterbabe’s jangly, hook-laden pop-punk with their own dreamy take on surf-pop. Led by vocalist Avery Draut, the up-and-coming band gigged tirelessly in 2015, making quite a name for itself in the process. The project only has a Bandcamp demo to its name, but 2016 might just be the year for some proper recordings.
Athens songwriter Jianna Justice also had a breakout year in 2015, releasing two sets of lo-fi pop songs over a span of just five months as Penny Lame. The second volume—her six-song, self-titled effort released this past November—was similarly focused on the pitfalls of collegiate romance, but showcased growth in her approach to songwriting and recording. Justice is still keeping busy in 2016, already debuting new material at a handful of Athens shows.
After a lull in activity following songwriter George Pettis’ move to Olympia, WA, 100 Watt Horse has returned to the live fold. Currently residing in Nashville, Pettis and vocalist/multi-instrumentalist Anna Jeter are back to playing tunes that veer into territories equal parts pop and folk. While much of Pettis’s early writing for 100 Watt Horse “borrowed very heavily from the Appalachian and ‘old time’ tradition of melody and structure,” Everything’s Alright Forever has moments where the group’s roots make way for less traditional fare, like the drum machine led “Wann It” and “Hold It”, or the echoing “Swan Song.” Performing as Moses Nesh, fellow Atlantan Isaac Stroupe deals similarly in Appalachian-inspired tunes, but his work captures the hillbilly sound and spirit better than most performing folk artists today. Stroupe’s last release, 2014’s The Lovely Ohio sounds like it was pulled from a time capsule, his words drawled and slurred over sliding acoustic guitar arpeggios. Stroupe will also accompany 100 Watt Horse on bass for a few songs, as the two acts are embarking on a winter tour together.
Sunday, January 24
The World Famous
Athens, GA – 18+
9pm – $5