Athens music

Nuclear Tourism: “Dad Brains”

So hot right now! …poolside music videos that is. But also, yeah…patrolling the U.S. south this time of year almost makes you wish for a nuclear winter. So with mutually assured destruction still a bit too close for comfort, nuclear tourism seems like the next best thing. Yet we’re not predicting a windfall of Trinity testsite visitors post-Oppenheimer. No, we’re actually talking about Athens, Georgia garage punk rock quartet Nuclear Tourism. These dastardly slackers got started a half decade back with their debut album Scraping By and ever since, when they’re not getting stoned as a bone, bombing hills, or slurping up greasy slices, the four-piece is going full-power in their practice space, shredding through raw reflections of dissent and affection. And as Nuclear Tourism basks in the fallout of their eponymous sophomore record that dropped in February, they also cool off in a newly-issued music video for “Dad Brains”. Bridging timeless embodiments of angst and contextualizing The Graduate for the next generation of unmotivated miscreants, Nuclear Tourism channels Dustin Hoffman’s iconic despondency in the only way they know how; by slappin’ the “plastics” out of those patronizing paternal synapses and instead bonding over Marlboros, beers, and cannonballs. Making apathy look as flashy as it does nasty, “Dad Brains” begs for a drink-a-long lobotomy…just wait ’til you get home from work before diving in and putting ’em down.

Monsoon: “Don’t Move”

Back in the ’80s, groups like R.E.M., The B-52’s, and Widespread Panic turned the quiet college town of Athens, Georgia into a hub of alternative music, a legacy that’s since continued with of Montreal, Drive-By Truckers, and Neutral Milk Hotel. That spirit of indie culture is still alive and well today, as made clear by groups like Monsoon. Shortly after dipping their toes in the water with their 2015 debut album Ride A’Rolla, the then-duo trickled into the mainstream, thanks to a song placement by Toyota during the 2016 Super Bowl. But just like the rapidly changing winds of a seasonal storm, Monsoon shied away just as quickly as they’d arrived. Fast forward to last year. With the addition of bassist Roan O’Reilly, Monsoon reunited as a trio and began tracking their latest LP, Ghost Party. Ghost Party dropped in mid-late February, and Monsoon wraps up their two-month national tour next weekend. It won’t take much for Monsoon’s idiosyncrasies across music videos and original tunes to sweep you away into fandom, so plant your feet in the sand if you must when you check out one of Ghost Party‘s most sophisticated specters, “Don’t Move”.

Linqua Franqa: “Gold Bike” (Live in Studio 6A)

Who says hip-hop can’t move a crowd at 8 in the morning? Definitely not Mariah Parker, the Athens, Georgia rapper-songwriter-activist who performs as Linqua Franqa. It’s been half a decade since Linqua Franqa shared their self-titled debut, which has been their sole full-length to date. But for good reason; they’ve been busy! On top of parenting, Parker’s been plugging away as County Commissioner in Athens, engaging the community, and true to their stage name, self-researching the heck out of linguistics. Between juggling all that, it’s nothing short of remarkable that Linqua Franqa’s managed to record their sophomore LP Bellringer, out April 22nd. This baker’s dozen of bangers doubles as a vehicle for Parker’s never-ending social commentary as well as an exhibition of their cutting-edge artistry. Last Saturday Linqua Franqa stopped by Studio 6A for SXSW and teased a few of Bellringer‘s lead singles. But they also kept the momentum going strong despite backpedaling to the album closer off Linqua Franca, “Gold Bike”.