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Alexa Dexa takes her 'toychestral electronic pop' on the road via MegaBus

A Q&A with the New York City-based toy piano troubadour.

There is little that’s conventional about Alexa Dexa. Performing what she calls “toychestral pop music,” she tours relentlessly outside her New York City home by MegaBus. She’s self-booked, self-recorded, and self-promoted. Her tours cost as little as $36 to complete. Unarguably, she personifies DIY for the millennium.

Dexa travels light — a collection of toy pianos, homemade beats on an iPod, pitched desk bells, and a few other oddities round out her set up. The tools might be compact, but they’re manipulated far beyond their initial limitations. On stage, she balances delicate instrumentation with rich, jazzy vocals. The sound is haunting and ambient, and often defined by soft, subtle hooks.

While en route to play the Star Bar's Little Vinyl Lounge tonight Fri., March 11, Dexa checked in to talk more about her craft.

You’re currently traveling by MegaBus. What prompted you to tour this way? How is that going?

I discovered the glory and ease of dollar bus tickets while attending Berklee College of Music, which had me going back and forth between Boston and New York every few months. Since my tour set up is incredibly self-contained (an 18-key Schoenhut toy piano and a 40 liter Deuter backpack), the progression to using MegaBus to reach other cities around the US was pretty natural. This is my 8th self-booked DIY tour using MegaBus and similar low-cost transit options to get around. With an overhead cost as low as $36 to travel the whole eastern half of the United States, it doesn't make sense for me to travel any other way.

I'll be honest, last night I took the overnight bus from DC to ATL and that was a bit rough. You have to have a certain level of tolerance and endurance to take an overnight bus and keep moving the next day. But otherwise I really love the bus! I don't have to worry about directions, being too tired to drive, and there's no liability on my part for break-downs or the like. It's a stress-free zen-zone where I can just enjoy the scenery and contemplate my existence.


Alexa Dexa plays the Star Bar's Little Vinyl Lounge tonight (Fri., March 11).
Photo credit: Anjipan

I’m aware of the challenges of touring: Getting people to shows, keeping mental and physical health in check, trying to break even, and more. How do you combat these things?

Those are definitely real challenges for me! Luckily breaking even is facilitated by very low overhead in the transit department. It's also a big help that I have a few friends in all the cities I go to, so I don't have to worry about staying in a hotel and I have the added benefit of being surrounded by people I love at every stop along the way.

I've learned the hard way that it's imperative that I listen to my body when I'm touring. I have to be careful that I don't push myself too hard in the interest of seeing new things. Sometimes it's better to spend the day sitting in a park or in a coffee shop reading and taking it easy in order to preserve my back from the burden of carrying my pack here and there all day. One of my friends once told me that it's important to find some way of keeping yourself grounded while you travel. That really resonates with me. I like to keep a small semblance of a routine like stretching twice a day, spending time exploring outside, and leaving some time set aside to take care of business matters (and of course to play my shows!). That helps me keep a level head while I'm on tour.

What have been the best cities you’ve played recently?

In January, I did a mini-tour up the east coast from Tampa to NY, an itinerary spawned from my participation in the Florida International Toy Piano Festival. I had an amazing time playing the Earl with Jeffrey Bützer and Bowie in Sweats here in Atlanta. I also loved playing in Charlotte where everyone is just so friendly and attentive. I always feel at home there!

Your music, which you refer to as “toychestral electronic pop,” doesn’t have many precedents. How do you explain what you do to people who have no immediate reference points?

It is a phenomenal experience to try to explain what kind of music I'm making. I've heard from a lot of first-time audience members that the look of my toy instruments combined with my soft-spoken speaking voice had them expecting something utterly different than what they ended up hearing. Oftentimes there's a wave of surprise that a sound so strong and anything but childish comes out of a 25-year-old that is constantly confused for a 15-year-old.

I like to tell people that I perform with a toy piano and pitched desk bells marketed towards children, I make electronic beats, and sing. Those words don't exactly do the sounds I make much justice, but the interest is usually there. I've heard people compare me to Portishead and Bjork and I'm flattered by those references. But the sound is still something you just have to hear!

Do you find it difficult to connect with similar artists nationally or is there a vibrant toy musician scene spread throughout the country?

It's somewhat hard to connect with similar artists nationally as there aren't many that are super similar to me. However, when I find toy-piano-inspired artists, I'm humbled by how helpful and supportive they are and how wonderful it is to join their network. There is a great music scene for toy pianists in pockets of America (mostly NY, ATL, Tampa, and LA), Canada, and Germany, with new places cropping up here and there.

Most of the scene is a bit more avant-garde classical, which I identify with and also write for but isn't quite indicative of my toychestral electronic pop project. So when I go on tour I also like to reach out to other female producers and performers that make their own tracks and have a unique sound. They may not play toys, but stylistically the nature is similar and interesting.

What are your plans for the future? Do you plan to tour the same way next go round?

Well my current Manifest Destiny Tour has me on the road until May 2. I'll be ending my tour at the ASCAP Expo in LA where I hope to meet with some festival booking agents and music licensing supervisors. After that, I'll be planning my second international tour through Europe and Scandinavia for June and July. Around September and October I hope to tour South Korea, Japan, Australia, and New Zealand. After that, I'll be recording my next two albums in my recording studio, Rawhide Records! Always plenty to plan for and to do!

And yes, you can be sure I'll be riding the cheapest bus around no matter what state or country I'm in.

Alexa Dexa plays the Star Bar's Little Vinyl Lounge  tonight (Fri., March 11). Free. 9 p.m. Emily Marie Palmer & Jeffrey Bützer, Ben Trickey, and Amy O’Dell also perform.



More By This Writer

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  string(6974) "Festival season has descended upon Atlanta. While dozens of gatherings are strewn across the city on any given weekend, few pack as much spirit, focus and DIY grit as Southern Surf Stompfest. As an extension of Chad Shivers's (generally) monthly Southern Surf Stomps at Kavarna in Oakhurst and across Atlanta proper, the festival distills the regional surf scene into a day-long event at Little Tree Art Studios in Avondale Estates with bands, vendors and a tiki bar. Fall might be here, but there's technically still a few days of summer left. In other words, surf music and a surf music festival still makes total sense.

CL last spoke with Shivers over two years ago, before the first Stompfest took place, so it's time to catch up and talk about how his festival taps into Atlanta's longstanding love affair with surf music, and where the festival is headed in the future.

The last time we checked in, it was about two and a half years ago. You'd been doing your monthly Surf Stomps for about a year and were planning the first Stompfest. How has Southern Surf Stomp progressed since then?

Hopefully I won't bring down the room too much on this first one. I feel like I went really hard for about three years and it was unsustainable. That, along with spending too much time away from my family, has led me to slow down a bit. We're no longer doing the monthly shows, but really just whenever it feels right or a band wants to come to town. However, it has freed me up to pursue different types of shows at other venues and focus much more on the yearly festival.

This is the third year you've done the Southern Surf Stompfest. It seems like the festival grows a little every year. How is this different than the last two Stompfests?

Yeah, it has grown quite a bit! I wouldn't say it's drastically different, but there's some subtle nuances. We've really made an effort to focus on the neighborhood of Avondale, preferring local vendors like Pallookaville, Taylor'd Bar-B-Q, and My Parent's Basement which will be serving Wild Heaven beer and tiki drinks which is also new for us featuring rum from Independent Distilling Co. We've got several more vendors than in previous years and even more activities for kids. In addition to the main event and pre-party at Trader Vic's the night before, we've also added a Sunday show in Kennesaw at the Burnt Hickory Brewery and a couple other surrounding events. We're starting to garner more of a reputation and a greater number of folks are traveling in for the weekend. I know of several people coming from South Florida, despite the devastation caused by hurricane Irma, Alabama, Tennessee, Ohio, Illinois, California, even Washington state!

How does the festival fit in with Atlanta's larger festival culture?

StompFest is unique in a lot of ways, the most obvious being that it's primarily a celebration of surf and instrumental music! We don't really have much in the way of support outside of our community or 'tribe' as so many lovingly refer to it so it's organized by a group of people who are just huge fans of the genre, very punk rock/DIY in that regard. There are several events like ours around the country, but I believe ours is only one of two which are free. Heck, even Little Tree seems to be a non-traditional venue.

You mentioned the punk and DIY nature of this festival, which connects to the surf community as a whole. Can you talk more about that?

Honestly, I believe it comes down to necessity. You really have to work your tail off to bring an audience to a surf show, especially nowadays. Our genre is so small and niche, not too many are even aware of its existence so that can be a tough sell to clubs and promoters. What you find however, is a small number regional bands who start working together towards putting on shows, festivals, and other events. With social media platforms like Facebook or the SurfGuitar101.com forums, these regional scenes can (and do) find each other, start collaborating, and before you know it there's a national or even global community.

What does holding the festival in Avondale Estates at Little Tree Art Studios bring to the festival? Do you get something there that you wouldn't get somewhere else?

First off, I'd just love to say how much I love Little Tree and how perfect it is for us. We have MUCH more freedom than we would elsewhere. Bob, the owner and manager of the property, basically gives us carte blanche of the place. Working with the city of Avondale has really been a pleasure as well they've got great people who want events like ours and MayHam festival to succeed. As an added bonus, it's a very low-key location with plenty of space, parking, and easy MARTA access.

Atlanta had a long but fractured history with surf music before the Southern Surf Stomp came along. There used to be the Clarkston Surf Fest and the side stage at the Drive-Invasion. Do you feel a connection with that history?

Oh, there's definitely a direct connection. I think I went to the first or second Drive-Invasion. I may have just been in high school at the time, and my friends Suellen Germani, Greg Germani and Scott Rogers, aka Rip Thrillby from legendary surf act the Penetrators, were the catalysts. I stepped away from the surf music scene for a while and going to the Clarkston Surf Fest is one of the things that brought me back in, seeing so many great acts and introducing me to so many people who are now like my family.

It looks like this year's lineup is even more diverse than last year. Can you talk some about the bands?

Of course! Our headliners, the Aqualads, have been playing together since 1996 and just might be the best traditional surf group in the world. Their last album Treasures has got to be one of the greatest of the past decade or more. On the other end of the spectrum, we've got a band like Genki Genki Panic, which is like if you threw surf in a blender along with Danny Elfman, the Melvins and Scooby Doo. We've got the melodic, fun and LOUD the Out of Limits from North Carolina, a bit of Tex-Mex flavor from Baton Rouge's Rondo Hatton, southern fried surf from the Reverburritos all the way from Arkansas, and returning locals the Mystery Men?, El Capitan, rhe Surge!, DJ Dusty Booze, and even some rockabilly from Caroline & the Ramblers.

Where do you see this heading in the future?

I just want to put on the best festival we can and introduce people to this genre I love so much. We've already been talking with some pretty big names for 2018, so fingers crossed there. Some other ideas that have been tossed around include a classic car show, pin-up contest, seminars, and maybe even an additional stage featuring non-surf acts, or 'turf' if you will. I'd also like to do a smaller festival, possibly in the spring, featuring all of the Atlanta and Athens surf groups.


Free. Noon till 10 p.m. Sat., Sept. 16. Little Tree Art Studios, 2834 Franklin St, Avondale Estates."
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''CL'' last spoke with Shivers over two years ago, before the first Stompfest took place, so it's time to catch up and talk about how his festival taps into Atlanta's longstanding love affair with surf music, and where the festival is headed in the future.

__The last time we checked in, it was about two and a half years ago. You'd been doing your monthly Surf Stomps for about a year and were planning the first Stompfest. How has Southern Surf Stomp progressed since then?__

Hopefully I won't bring down the room too much on this first one. I feel like I went really hard for about three years and it was unsustainable. That, along with spending too much time away from my family, has led me to slow down a bit. We're no longer doing the monthly shows, but really just whenever it feels right or a band wants to come to town. However, it has freed me up to pursue different types of shows at other venues and focus much more on the yearly festival.

__This is the third year you've done the Southern Surf Stompfest. It seems like the festival grows a little every year. How is this different than the last two Stompfests?__

Yeah, it has grown quite a bit! I wouldn't say it's drastically different, but there's some subtle nuances. We've really made an effort to focus on the neighborhood of Avondale, preferring local vendors like [https://pallookaville.com/|Pallookaville], [https://www.facebook.com/TaylordBBQ/|Taylor'd Bar-B-Q], and [http://www.myparentsbasementcbcb.com/|My Parent's Basement] which will be serving Wild Heaven beer and tiki drinks which is also new for us featuring rum from Independent Distilling Co. We've got several more vendors than in previous years and even more activities for kids. In addition to the main event and pre-party at Trader Vic's the night before, we've also added a Sunday show in Kennesaw at the [http://www.burnthickorybrewery.com/|Burnt Hickory Brewery] and a couple other surrounding events. We're starting to garner more of a reputation and a greater number of folks are traveling in for the weekend. I know of several people coming from South Florida, despite the devastation caused by hurricane Irma, Alabama, Tennessee, Ohio, Illinois, California, even Washington state!

__How does the festival fit in with Atlanta's larger festival culture?__

StompFest is unique in a lot of ways, the most obvious being that it's primarily a celebration of surf and instrumental music! We don't really have much in the way of support outside of our community or 'tribe' as so many lovingly refer to it so it's organized by a group of people who are just huge fans of the genre, very punk rock/DIY in that regard. There are several events like ours around the country, but I believe ours is only one of two which are free. Heck, even Little Tree seems to be a non-traditional venue.

__You mentioned the punk and DIY nature of this festival, which connects to the surf community as a whole. Can you talk more about that?__

Honestly, I believe it comes down to necessity. You really have to work your tail off to bring an audience to a surf show, especially nowadays. Our genre is so small and niche, not too many are even aware of its existence so that can be a tough sell to clubs and promoters. What you find however, is a small number regional bands who start working together towards putting on shows, festivals, and other events. With social media platforms like Facebook or the [https://surfguitar101.com/|SurfGuitar101.com] forums, these regional scenes can (and do) find each other, start collaborating, and before you know it there's a national or even global community.

__What does holding the festival in Avondale Estates at Little Tree Art Studios bring to the festival? Do you get something there that you wouldn't get somewhere else?__

First off, I'd just love to say how much I love Little Tree and how perfect it is for us. We have MUCH more freedom than we would elsewhere. Bob, the owner and manager of the property, basically gives us carte blanche of the place. Working with the city of Avondale has really been a pleasure as well they've got great people who want events like ours and MayHam festival to succeed. As an added bonus, it's a very low-key location with plenty of space, parking, and easy MARTA access.

__Atlanta had a long but fractured history with surf music before the Southern Surf Stomp came along. There used to be the Clarkston Surf Fest and the side stage at the Drive-Invasion. Do you feel a connection with that history?__

Oh, there's definitely a direct connection. I think I went to the first or second Drive-Invasion. I may have just been in high school at the time, and my friends Suellen Germani, Greg Germani and Scott Rogers, aka Rip Thrillby from legendary surf act the Penetrators, were the catalysts. I stepped away from the surf music scene for a while and going to the Clarkston Surf Fest is one of the things that brought me back in, seeing so many great acts and introducing me to so many people who are now like my family.

__It looks like this year's lineup is even more diverse than last year. Can you talk some about the bands?__

Of course! Our headliners, the Aqualads, have been playing together since 1996 and just might be the best traditional surf group in the world. Their last album ''Treasures'' has got to be one of the greatest of the past decade or more. On the other end of the spectrum, we've got a band like Genki Genki Panic, which is like if you threw surf in a blender along with Danny Elfman, the Melvins and Scooby Doo. We've got the melodic, fun and LOUD the Out of Limits from North Carolina, a bit of Tex-Mex flavor from Baton Rouge's Rondo Hatton, southern fried surf from the Reverburritos all the way from Arkansas, and returning locals the Mystery Men?, El Capitan, rhe Surge!, DJ Dusty Booze, and even some rockabilly from Caroline & the Ramblers.

__Where do you see this heading in the future?__

I just want to put on the best festival we can and introduce people to this genre I love so much. We've already been talking with some pretty big names for 2018, so fingers crossed there. Some other ideas that have been tossed around include a classic car show, pin-up contest, seminars, and maybe even an additional stage featuring non-surf acts, or 'turf' if you will. I'd also like to do a smaller festival, possibly in the spring, featuring all of the Atlanta and Athens surf groups.


''[http://southernsurfstomp.blogspot.com/|Free. Noon till 10 p.m. Sat., Sept. 16. Little Tree Art Studios, 2834 Franklin St, Avondale Estates.]''"
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  string(7653) " MMFennerTVsEXT800.59bc65a608df0  2018-04-10T03:14:50+00:00 MMFennerTVsEXT800.59bc65a608df0.jpg     Festival founder Chad Shivers brings grit, community and a DIY spirit to Avondale Estates and beyond 4616  2017-09-16T02:03:00+00:00 Southern Surf StompFest captures Southeast surf music at its finest clint@thenetworkedplanet.com Clint Bergst Sean Zearfoss  2017-09-16T02:03:00+00:00  Festival season has descended upon Atlanta. While dozens of gatherings are strewn across the city on any given weekend, few pack as much spirit, focus and DIY grit as Southern Surf Stompfest. As an extension of Chad Shivers's (generally) monthly Southern Surf Stomps at Kavarna in Oakhurst and across Atlanta proper, the festival distills the regional surf scene into a day-long event at Little Tree Art Studios in Avondale Estates with bands, vendors and a tiki bar. Fall might be here, but there's technically still a few days of summer left. In other words, surf music and a surf music festival still makes total sense.

CL last spoke with Shivers over two years ago, before the first Stompfest took place, so it's time to catch up and talk about how his festival taps into Atlanta's longstanding love affair with surf music, and where the festival is headed in the future.

The last time we checked in, it was about two and a half years ago. You'd been doing your monthly Surf Stomps for about a year and were planning the first Stompfest. How has Southern Surf Stomp progressed since then?

Hopefully I won't bring down the room too much on this first one. I feel like I went really hard for about three years and it was unsustainable. That, along with spending too much time away from my family, has led me to slow down a bit. We're no longer doing the monthly shows, but really just whenever it feels right or a band wants to come to town. However, it has freed me up to pursue different types of shows at other venues and focus much more on the yearly festival.

This is the third year you've done the Southern Surf Stompfest. It seems like the festival grows a little every year. How is this different than the last two Stompfests?

Yeah, it has grown quite a bit! I wouldn't say it's drastically different, but there's some subtle nuances. We've really made an effort to focus on the neighborhood of Avondale, preferring local vendors like Pallookaville, Taylor'd Bar-B-Q, and My Parent's Basement which will be serving Wild Heaven beer and tiki drinks which is also new for us featuring rum from Independent Distilling Co. We've got several more vendors than in previous years and even more activities for kids. In addition to the main event and pre-party at Trader Vic's the night before, we've also added a Sunday show in Kennesaw at the Burnt Hickory Brewery and a couple other surrounding events. We're starting to garner more of a reputation and a greater number of folks are traveling in for the weekend. I know of several people coming from South Florida, despite the devastation caused by hurricane Irma, Alabama, Tennessee, Ohio, Illinois, California, even Washington state!

How does the festival fit in with Atlanta's larger festival culture?

StompFest is unique in a lot of ways, the most obvious being that it's primarily a celebration of surf and instrumental music! We don't really have much in the way of support outside of our community or 'tribe' as so many lovingly refer to it so it's organized by a group of people who are just huge fans of the genre, very punk rock/DIY in that regard. There are several events like ours around the country, but I believe ours is only one of two which are free. Heck, even Little Tree seems to be a non-traditional venue.

You mentioned the punk and DIY nature of this festival, which connects to the surf community as a whole. Can you talk more about that?

Honestly, I believe it comes down to necessity. You really have to work your tail off to bring an audience to a surf show, especially nowadays. Our genre is so small and niche, not too many are even aware of its existence so that can be a tough sell to clubs and promoters. What you find however, is a small number regional bands who start working together towards putting on shows, festivals, and other events. With social media platforms like Facebook or the SurfGuitar101.com forums, these regional scenes can (and do) find each other, start collaborating, and before you know it there's a national or even global community.

What does holding the festival in Avondale Estates at Little Tree Art Studios bring to the festival? Do you get something there that you wouldn't get somewhere else?

First off, I'd just love to say how much I love Little Tree and how perfect it is for us. We have MUCH more freedom than we would elsewhere. Bob, the owner and manager of the property, basically gives us carte blanche of the place. Working with the city of Avondale has really been a pleasure as well they've got great people who want events like ours and MayHam festival to succeed. As an added bonus, it's a very low-key location with plenty of space, parking, and easy MARTA access.

Atlanta had a long but fractured history with surf music before the Southern Surf Stomp came along. There used to be the Clarkston Surf Fest and the side stage at the Drive-Invasion. Do you feel a connection with that history?

Oh, there's definitely a direct connection. I think I went to the first or second Drive-Invasion. I may have just been in high school at the time, and my friends Suellen Germani, Greg Germani and Scott Rogers, aka Rip Thrillby from legendary surf act the Penetrators, were the catalysts. I stepped away from the surf music scene for a while and going to the Clarkston Surf Fest is one of the things that brought me back in, seeing so many great acts and introducing me to so many people who are now like my family.

It looks like this year's lineup is even more diverse than last year. Can you talk some about the bands?

Of course! Our headliners, the Aqualads, have been playing together since 1996 and just might be the best traditional surf group in the world. Their last album Treasures has got to be one of the greatest of the past decade or more. On the other end of the spectrum, we've got a band like Genki Genki Panic, which is like if you threw surf in a blender along with Danny Elfman, the Melvins and Scooby Doo. We've got the melodic, fun and LOUD the Out of Limits from North Carolina, a bit of Tex-Mex flavor from Baton Rouge's Rondo Hatton, southern fried surf from the Reverburritos all the way from Arkansas, and returning locals the Mystery Men?, El Capitan, rhe Surge!, DJ Dusty Booze, and even some rockabilly from Caroline & the Ramblers.

Where do you see this heading in the future?

I just want to put on the best festival we can and introduce people to this genre I love so much. We've already been talking with some pretty big names for 2018, so fingers crossed there. Some other ideas that have been tossed around include a classic car show, pin-up contest, seminars, and maybe even an additional stage featuring non-surf acts, or 'turf' if you will. I'd also like to do a smaller festival, possibly in the spring, featuring all of the Atlanta and Athens surf groups.


Free. Noon till 10 p.m. Sat., Sept. 16. Little Tree Art Studios, 2834 Franklin St, Avondale Estates.    Stacy Fenner / Fenner Photography The Mystery Men? play the Southern Surf Stompfest Sat., Sept. 16.        20975788         http://dev.creativeloafing.com/image/2017/09/MMFennerTVsEXT800.59bc65c97f464.png                  Southern Surf StompFest captures Southeast surf music at its finest "
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Friday September 15, 2017 10:03 pm EDT
Festival founder Chad Shivers brings grit, community and a DIY spirit to Avondale Estates and beyond | more...
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<a href="http://mathishunter.bandcamp.com/album/countryman">Countryman by Mathis Hunter</a>

Mathis Hunter didn’t intend to wait seven years to follow up his debut LP, Soft Opening, but it makes sense. Permeating the physical, spiritual, and religious worlds, the number seven counts not only seas, continents, and days of the week, but also chakras and heavens. If the real, tangible world and the mystical one are both grounded by the same number, then there is no better way to define Hunter’s music. Where Soft Opening only acknowledges the connection in passing, his new record, Countryman, explores these worlds intentionally as a cohesive whole — two sides of the same coin.

The South, where Hunter firmly stakes his claim, is a fitting place for this exploration. Churches, bars, and graveyards dot the landscape in equal amounts — often standing opposite one another on the same street — proving that both the physical world and what lies beyond hold equal sway. Talk of ley lines, laying burdens down, and following the light are scattered throughout the record, giving Countryman Hunter’s greatest sense of place yet. The American South is a weird and complex place that's often at odds with itself, which Hunter understands all too well.

Slide guitars, acoustics, tambourines, Rhodes, pedal steel, and piano are all present on the album's title track, but they’re bought to life by a full band instead of (mostly) Hunter himself, as with Soft Opening. This change helps the record alternate between heavier, full-on Southern rock songs such as "The Swirl" and the quieter, psych-folk country sounds of "Just a Fable." These divergent sounds are perhaps best showcased by heavy, slide-driven opener “Ley Lines” and the quieter, more introspective late album cut “Pendulum.” At seven minutes, this later song is perhaps Hunter’s finest moment to date.

"Night Jar" taps into a Southern sound, too. Where Soft Opening treaded a looser, more psychedelic landscape peppered with slide guitars, hand drums, tambourines, keys and chants, Countryman is direct, focused, and intentional by reflecting the same essential sound. Where the former record sounds something like a warped revival at a primitive church in deep Appalachia, this record takes place at the modern house of worship just on the outskirts of town. Hunter still leads the congregation, but this is a “come as you are” kind of affair. To be clear, there is nothing inherently religious (though perhaps spiritual) about this, but these images work for Hunter's genuinely Southern rock album that refuses to be an empty caricature of the South. ★★★★☆

Mathis Hunter plays the Countryman album release party at the Earl on Sat., March 25. $8. 9 p.m. With Lucis Flux and Lightnin' Ray. 488 Flat Shoals Ave. S.E. 404-522-3950. www.badearl.com."
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<a href="http://mathishunter.bandcamp.com/album/countryman">Countryman by Mathis Hunter</a>

[https://mathishunter.bandcamp.com/|Mathis Hunter] didn’t intend to wait seven years to follow up his debut LP, ''Soft Opening'', but it makes sense. Permeating the physical, spiritual, and religious worlds, the number seven counts not only seas, continents, and days of the week, but also chakras and heavens. If the real, tangible world and the mystical one are both grounded by the same number, then there is no better way to define Hunter’s music. Where ''Soft Opening'' only acknowledges the connection in passing, his new record, ''Countryman'', explores these worlds intentionally as a cohesive whole — two sides of the same coin.

The South, where Hunter firmly stakes his claim, is a fitting place for this exploration. Churches, bars, and graveyards dot the landscape in equal amounts — often standing opposite one another on the same street — proving that both the physical world and what lies beyond hold equal sway. Talk of ley lines, laying burdens down, and following the light are scattered throughout the record, giving ''Countryman'' Hunter’s greatest sense of place yet. The American South is a weird and complex place that's often at odds with itself, which Hunter understands all too well.

Slide guitars, acoustics, tambourines, Rhodes, pedal steel, and piano are all present on the album's title track, but they’re bought to life by a full band instead of (mostly) Hunter himself, as with ''Soft Opening''. This change helps the record alternate between heavier, full-on Southern rock songs such as "The Swirl" and the quieter, psych-folk country sounds of "Just a Fable." These divergent sounds are perhaps best showcased by heavy, slide-driven opener “Ley Lines” and the quieter, more introspective late album cut “Pendulum.” At seven minutes, this later song is perhaps Hunter’s finest moment to date.

"Night Jar" taps into a Southern sound, too. Where ''Soft Opening'' treaded a looser, more psychedelic landscape peppered with slide guitars, hand drums, tambourines, keys and chants, ''Countryman'' is direct, focused, and intentional by reflecting the same essential sound. Where the former record sounds something like a warped revival at a primitive church in deep Appalachia, this record takes place at the modern house of worship just on the outskirts of town. Hunter still leads the congregation, but this is a “come as you are” kind of affair. To be clear, there is nothing inherently religious (though perhaps spiritual) about this, but these images work for Hunter's genuinely Southern rock album that refuses to be an empty caricature of the South. ★★★★☆

''[http://local.clatl.com/event/the-earl/mathis-hunter-lucis-flux-and-lightnin-ray|Mathis Hunter plays the Countryman album release party at the Earl on Sat., March 25. $8. 9 p.m. With Lucis Flux and Lightnin' Ray. 488 Flat Shoals Ave. S.E. 404-522-3950. www.badearl.com.]''"
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&lt;a href="http://mathishunter.bandcamp.com/album/countryman"&gt;Countryman by Mathis Hunter&lt;/a&gt;

Mathis Hunter didn’t intend to wait seven years to follow up his debut LP, Soft Opening, but it makes sense. Permeating the physical, spiritual, and religious worlds, the number seven counts not only seas, continents, and days of the week, but also chakras and heavens. If the real, tangible world and the mystical one are both grounded by the same number, then there is no better way to define Hunter’s music. Where Soft Opening only acknowledges the connection in passing, his new record, Countryman, explores these worlds intentionally as a cohesive whole — two sides of the same coin.

The South, where Hunter firmly stakes his claim, is a fitting place for this exploration. Churches, bars, and graveyards dot the landscape in equal amounts — often standing opposite one another on the same street — proving that both the physical world and what lies beyond hold equal sway. Talk of ley lines, laying burdens down, and following the light are scattered throughout the record, giving Countryman Hunter’s greatest sense of place yet. The American South is a weird and complex place that's often at odds with itself, which Hunter understands all too well.

Slide guitars, acoustics, tambourines, Rhodes, pedal steel, and piano are all present on the album's title track, but they’re bought to life by a full band instead of (mostly) Hunter himself, as with Soft Opening. This change helps the record alternate between heavier, full-on Southern rock songs such as "The Swirl" and the quieter, psych-folk country sounds of "Just a Fable." These divergent sounds are perhaps best showcased by heavy, slide-driven opener “Ley Lines” and the quieter, more introspective late album cut “Pendulum.” At seven minutes, this later song is perhaps Hunter’s finest moment to date.

"Night Jar" taps into a Southern sound, too. Where Soft Opening treaded a looser, more psychedelic landscape peppered with slide guitars, hand drums, tambourines, keys and chants, Countryman is direct, focused, and intentional by reflecting the same essential sound. Where the former record sounds something like a warped revival at a primitive church in deep Appalachia, this record takes place at the modern house of worship just on the outskirts of town. Hunter still leads the congregation, but this is a “come as you are” kind of affair. To be clear, there is nothing inherently religious (though perhaps spiritual) about this, but these images work for Hunter's genuinely Southern rock album that refuses to be an empty caricature of the South. ★★★★☆

Mathis Hunter plays the Countryman album release party at the Earl on Sat., March 25. $8. 9 p.m. With Lucis Flux and Lightnin' Ray. 488 Flat Shoals Ave. S.E. 404-522-3950. www.badearl.com.             20855155         http://dev.creativeloafing.com/image/2017/03/Countryman_Album_Cover.58cb020f7048f.png                  RECORD REVIEW: Mathis Hunter's 'Countryman' "
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Friday March 17, 2017 02:34 pm EDT
Talk of ley lines, laying burdens down, and following the light create Hunter's greatest sense of Southern identity yet | more...
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The Atlanta surf scene has probably never been stronger thanks to Chad Shivers and a tight-knit group of friends and fellow surf music aficionados. Through his monthly Southern Surf Stomps at Kavarna, his Southern Surf StompCast podcast, and his newly minted Southern Surf StompFest!, Shivers has focused, unified, and grown a once small and fragmented scene. This is an enterprise that few others are qualified to take on.

Since coming into its own from the mid-'90s to early aughts with bands such as the Penetrators, the Surge, and Man, Or Astro-man?, the Atlanta surf scene has ebbed and flowed in size and popularity. In recent years, the scene has been bolstered by the Clarkston Surf Fest (which later became the Douglasville Surf Fest) and the Drive-Invasion, which featured a side stage dedicated to surf music. But with the demise of the Clarkston/Douglasville Surf Fest, Shivers has picked up the torch to create the flagship Atlanta surf festival under his Southern Surf Stomp brand. In its second year, the festival is growing to not only represent the city’s surf bands, but the Southeast’s surf scene as a whole.

Shivers checked in to talk about how this year’s festival is shaping up, how it has grown since last year, and where he hopes to take it in the future. 

This is the second year of Southern Surf StompFest!. What prompted the idea for the festival last year?

We wanted to continue the strong tradition of a free, day-long, all ages festival dedicated to surf music established by the Clarkston and Douglasville Surf Fests. Southern Surf StompFest is also inspired by some of the wonderful events around the country such as the Instro Summit in North Carolina and the Surf Guitar 101 convention in Southern California. With our monthly show growing and becoming more popular, 2015 seemed like the right time to host our own festival.

Other than it focusing on surf music exclusively, how else is the fest different than other fests?

I honestly feel there is a greater sense of community.  Everyone involved with the event is a dear friend and has personal connections with each performer.

You’re doing the festival in Avondale. Why there?

Last year we were searching for a venue and someone had suggested Little Tree Art Studios, which is funny as I actually have a practice space there. It turned out to be the ideal place with an existing stage, lights, great feel, plenty of space, and room to grow.  Working with Bob from Little Tree and the people from the city of Avondale Estates has been an absolute pleasure and everyone has been so helpful and supportive of what we are trying to accomplish.

With big events like these, it always seems like there is a learning curve for the first year. Although the festival ran smoothly last year, are you approaching anything differently this year?

We were pretty thrilled with how things went in 2015 so there are no drastic changes. With a bigger budget this year we were able to get some internationally acclaimed acts such as Daikaiju and http://www.insectsurfers.com/" rel="external">Insect Surfers.  We also did away with an after party to include more bands on the festival stage. Many individuals have been kind enough to volunteer so we will have a greater staff on hand to help out where needed.

How does this compare to some of the national surf fests?

I'd say that ours is more inclusive being that it's free for all ages.

Tell me about the artists playing this year.

Daikaiju is insane.  More instrumental than surf, they're known throughout the world for their antics such as lighting their instruments on fire, playing literally on top of their audience, as well a climbing on to rooftops without missing a beat. With 200+ dates a year, they're definitely the hardest working act I know.



Having formed in 1979, the Insect Surfers are the world's longest running modern surf band. They play a mix of surf and psychedelic instrumentals. We're honored to have them all the way from Southern California! 

With one foot deeply rooted in classic surf and the other stretching out as far as it can go, the Mystery Men? create a wall of sound utilizing three guitars to weave an intricate sonic tapestry.

The Intoxicators! are dressed to impress in custom suits and sound like tape that was sped up and recorded too hot. I'd say guitarist Gary Evans is one of the top players in the genre, especially here in the Southeast.

The Surge! play traditional surf the way it's meant to be played:  loud, fun, energetic, and heavy on the melodies with tons of style.

Phatlynx started out as an homage to the late, great Link Wray but has really grown into it's own thing.  The band is the brainchild of one of my heroes Crispy Bess, who founded the Instro Summit and played with acts such as Southern Culture on the Skids, Uncle Tupelo, even Tiny Tim!

Caroline & the Ramblers is, in my opinion, Atlanta's greatest roots/rockabilly/classic country combo. We like to mix it up a bit so they'll be our 'turf' portion of the day, giving listeners a break from all that surf and instrumental music.

The Monterreys are an aggressive power trio who mixes surf with flamenco.

All the way from Virginia, SEAWHORSE are a bunch of young guys playing sax-driven surf in horse masks. The quartet can PLAY and are a lot of fun, not to mention hilarious.

The Penetrators were the first surf band I ever saw and made a positively huge impression on me. Tragically, half of the members are no longer with us so members of the Southern surf scene will be filling in alongside the original rhythm section to pay tribute to this iconic band.

Using this festival as an opportunity to look backward, has the surf for Atlanta and the region changed at all in a year or since you started doing the Southern Surf Stomps a few years ago? 

Definitely.  While we've always had a great surf scene, it's been somewhat disjointed. It seems like the Stomp has helped to focus the community and give it more drive. Atlanta has become a destination for surf bands to come play, and is starting to receive some international recognition.

The mid-'90s saw a resurgence of surf music after the heyday in the late '50s and early '60s. It seems to me that, while we might not ever see that kind of growth for any genre specific music again, the surf scene has grown since we last talked last year. Do you see that happening again?

I think surf music is bigger than ever with more bands, festivals, and connectivity through the likes of surfguitar101.com and Facebook. It's just a matter of media attention and/or having a push like that given by Pulp Fiction in the mid-'90's. So it's hard to say whether something like that will happen again but I'm optimistic.

Any goals moving forward?

I'd love to see the festival and our monthly shows become a bigger player on the global stage, attracting bands and fans from all over while bringing attention to the tremendous talent we have here in the Southeast. At home, to reach out to a younger audience and have surf taken more seriously among various media platforms. There is truly something wonderful here in the Southern surf scene just waiting to be discovered. But most of all, we just want keep pushing forward, putting on the best events we possibly can, hopefully making them bigger and better in the process.

Southern Surf StompFest goes down on Sat., Sept. 17. Free. 12 p.m. Little Tree Art Studios, 2834 Franklin St. Avondale Estates. www.littletreeartstudios.com. 

... And don't forget about the kick-off party at Trader Vics with Kinky Waikiki and the Dangling Tassels tonight (Fri., Sept. 16)."
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The Atlanta surf scene has probably never been stronger thanks to Chad Shivers and a tight-knit group of friends and fellow surf music aficionados. Through his monthly Southern Surf Stomps at Kavarna, his [http://southernsurfstompcast.podbean.com/|Southern Surf StompCast podcast], and his newly minted [https://www.facebook.com/SouthernSurfStomp/?hc_ref=PAGES_TIMELINE|Southern Surf StompFest!], Shivers has focused, unified, and grown a once small and fragmented scene. This is an enterprise that few others are qualified to take on.

Since coming into its own from the mid-'90s to early aughts with bands such as the Penetrators, the Surge, and Man, Or Astro-man?, the Atlanta surf scene has ebbed and flowed in size and popularity. In recent years, the scene has been bolstered by the Clarkston Surf Fest (which later became the Douglasville Surf Fest) and the Drive-Invasion, which featured a side stage dedicated to surf music. But with the demise of the Clarkston/Douglasville Surf Fest, Shivers has picked up the torch to create the flagship Atlanta surf festival under his Southern Surf Stomp brand. In its second year, the festival is growing to not only represent the city’s surf bands, but the Southeast’s surf scene as a whole.

Shivers checked in to talk about how this year’s festival is shaping up, how it has grown since last year, and where he hopes to take it in the future. 

__This is the second year of Southern Surf StompFest!. What prompted the idea for the festival last year?__

We wanted to continue the strong tradition of a free, day-long, all ages festival dedicated to surf music established by the Clarkston and Douglasville Surf Fests. Southern Surf StompFest is also inspired by some of the wonderful events around the country such as the Instro Summit in North Carolina and the Surf Guitar 101 convention in Southern California. With our monthly show growing and becoming more popular, 2015 seemed like the right time to host our own festival.

__Other than it focusing on surf music exclusively, how else is the fest different than other fests?__

I honestly feel there is a greater sense of community.  Everyone involved with the event is a dear friend and has personal connections with each performer.

__You’re doing the festival in Avondale. Why there?__

Last year we were searching for a venue and someone had suggested Little Tree Art Studios, which is funny as I actually have a practice space there. It turned out to be the ideal place with an existing stage, lights, great feel, plenty of space, and room to grow.  Working with Bob from Little Tree and the people from the city of Avondale Estates has been an absolute pleasure and everyone has been so helpful and supportive of what we are trying to accomplish.

__With big events like these, it always seems like there is a learning curve for the first year. Although the festival ran smoothly last year, are you approaching anything differently this year?__

We were pretty thrilled with how things went in 2015 so there are no drastic changes. With a bigger budget this year we were able to get some internationally acclaimed acts such as [http://daikaiju.org/|Daikaiju] and [Insect http://www.insectsurfers.com/|Insect Surfers].  We also did away with an after party to include more bands on the festival stage. Many individuals have been kind enough to volunteer so we will have a greater staff on hand to help out where needed.

__How does this compare to some of the national surf fests?__

I'd say that ours is more inclusive being that it's free for all ages.

__Tell me about the artists playing this year.__

Daikaiju is insane.  More instrumental than surf, they're known throughout the world for their antics such as lighting their instruments on fire, playing literally on top of their audience, as well a climbing on to rooftops without missing a beat. With 200+ dates a year, they're definitely the hardest working act I know.



Having formed in 1979, the Insect Surfers are the world's longest running modern surf band. They play a mix of surf and psychedelic instrumentals. We're honored to have them all the way from Southern California! 

With one foot deeply rooted in classic surf and the other stretching out as far as it can go, [http://www.themysterymenofsurf.com/|the Mystery Men?] create a wall of sound utilizing three guitars to weave an intricate sonic tapestry.

[http://www.intoxicators.com/|The Intoxicators!] are dressed to impress in custom suits and sound like tape that was sped up and recorded too hot. I'd say guitarist Gary Evans is one of the top players in the genre, especially here in the Southeast.

The Surge! play traditional surf the way it's meant to be played:  loud, fun, energetic, and heavy on the melodies with tons of style.

[https://www.facebook.com/Phatlynx-161551310537682/|Phatlynx] started out as an homage to the late, great Link Wray but has really grown into it's own thing.  The band is the brainchild of one of my heroes Crispy Bess, who founded the Instro Summit and played with acts such as Southern Culture on the Skids, Uncle Tupelo, even Tiny Tim!

[https://www.facebook.com/Caroline-the-Ramblers-278676365042/|Caroline & the Ramblers] is, in my opinion, Atlanta's greatest roots/rockabilly/classic country combo. We like to mix it up a bit so they'll be our 'turf' portion of the day, giving listeners a break from all that surf and instrumental music.

[https://www.facebook.com/themonterreys/?hc_location=ufi|The Monterreys] are an aggressive power trio who mixes surf with flamenco.

All the way from Virginia, [https://seawhorserva.bandcamp.com/|SEAWHORSE] are a bunch of young guys playing sax-driven surf in horse masks. The quartet can PLAY and are a lot of fun, not to mention hilarious.

[http://penetrators.us/|The Penetrators] were the first surf band I ever saw and made a positively huge impression on me. Tragically, half of the members are no longer with us so members of the Southern surf scene will be filling in alongside the original rhythm section to pay tribute to this iconic band.

__Using this festival as an opportunity to look backward, has the surf for Atlanta and the region changed at all in a year or since you started doing the Southern Surf Stomps a few years ago?__ 

Definitely.  While we've always had a great surf scene, it's been somewhat disjointed. It seems like the Stomp has helped to focus the community and give it more drive. Atlanta has become a destination for surf bands to come play, and is starting to receive some international recognition.

__The mid-'90s saw a resurgence of surf music after the heyday in the late '50s and early '60s. It seems to me that, while we might not ever see that kind of growth for any genre specific music again, the surf scene has grown since we last talked last year. Do you see that happening again?__

I think surf music is bigger than ever with more bands, festivals, and connectivity through the likes of [https://surfguitar101.com/|surfguitar101.com] and Facebook. It's just a matter of media attention and/or having a push like that given by ''Pulp Fiction'' in the mid-'90's. So it's hard to say whether something like that will happen again but I'm optimistic.

__Any goals moving forward?__

I'd love to see the festival and our monthly shows become a bigger player on the global stage, attracting bands and fans from all over while bringing attention to the tremendous talent we have here in the Southeast. At home, to reach out to a younger audience and have surf taken more seriously among various media platforms. There is truly something wonderful here in the Southern surf scene just waiting to be discovered. But most of all, we just want keep pushing forward, putting on the best events we possibly can, hopefully making them bigger and better in the process.

''Southern Surf StompFest goes down on Sat., __Sept. 17__. Free. 12 p.m. Little Tree Art Studios, 2834 Franklin St. Avondale Estates. www.littletreeartstudios.com. ''

... And don't forget about the kick-off party at Trader Vics with Kinky Waikiki and the Dangling Tassels tonight (Fri., __Sept. 16__)."
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  string(8222) "    Daikaiju, Insect Surfers, the Mystery Men?, and more bring the sounds of the beach to Avondale Estates   2016-09-16T22:29:00+00:00 A Q&A with Southern Surf StompFest founder Chad Shivers   Sean Zearfoss  2016-09-16T22:29:00+00:00  %{data-embed-type=%22image%22 data-embed-id=%2257dc359438ab46542595130a%22 data-embed-element=%22span%22 data-embed-size=%22640w%22 contenteditable=%22false%22}%

The Atlanta surf scene has probably never been stronger thanks to Chad Shivers and a tight-knit group of friends and fellow surf music aficionados. Through his monthly Southern Surf Stomps at Kavarna, his Southern Surf StompCast podcast, and his newly minted Southern Surf StompFest!, Shivers has focused, unified, and grown a once small and fragmented scene. This is an enterprise that few others are qualified to take on.

Since coming into its own from the mid-'90s to early aughts with bands such as the Penetrators, the Surge, and Man, Or Astro-man?, the Atlanta surf scene has ebbed and flowed in size and popularity. In recent years, the scene has been bolstered by the Clarkston Surf Fest (which later became the Douglasville Surf Fest) and the Drive-Invasion, which featured a side stage dedicated to surf music. But with the demise of the Clarkston/Douglasville Surf Fest, Shivers has picked up the torch to create the flagship Atlanta surf festival under his Southern Surf Stomp brand. In its second year, the festival is growing to not only represent the city’s surf bands, but the Southeast’s surf scene as a whole.

Shivers checked in to talk about how this year’s festival is shaping up, how it has grown since last year, and where he hopes to take it in the future. 

This is the second year of Southern Surf StompFest!. What prompted the idea for the festival last year?

We wanted to continue the strong tradition of a free, day-long, all ages festival dedicated to surf music established by the Clarkston and Douglasville Surf Fests. Southern Surf StompFest is also inspired by some of the wonderful events around the country such as the Instro Summit in North Carolina and the Surf Guitar 101 convention in Southern California. With our monthly show growing and becoming more popular, 2015 seemed like the right time to host our own festival.

Other than it focusing on surf music exclusively, how else is the fest different than other fests?

I honestly feel there is a greater sense of community.  Everyone involved with the event is a dear friend and has personal connections with each performer.

You’re doing the festival in Avondale. Why there?

Last year we were searching for a venue and someone had suggested Little Tree Art Studios, which is funny as I actually have a practice space there. It turned out to be the ideal place with an existing stage, lights, great feel, plenty of space, and room to grow.  Working with Bob from Little Tree and the people from the city of Avondale Estates has been an absolute pleasure and everyone has been so helpful and supportive of what we are trying to accomplish.

With big events like these, it always seems like there is a learning curve for the first year. Although the festival ran smoothly last year, are you approaching anything differently this year?

We were pretty thrilled with how things went in 2015 so there are no drastic changes. With a bigger budget this year we were able to get some internationally acclaimed acts such as Daikaiju and http://www.insectsurfers.com/" rel="external">Insect Surfers.  We also did away with an after party to include more bands on the festival stage. Many individuals have been kind enough to volunteer so we will have a greater staff on hand to help out where needed.

How does this compare to some of the national surf fests?

I'd say that ours is more inclusive being that it's free for all ages.

Tell me about the artists playing this year.

Daikaiju is insane.  More instrumental than surf, they're known throughout the world for their antics such as lighting their instruments on fire, playing literally on top of their audience, as well a climbing on to rooftops without missing a beat. With 200+ dates a year, they're definitely the hardest working act I know.



Having formed in 1979, the Insect Surfers are the world's longest running modern surf band. They play a mix of surf and psychedelic instrumentals. We're honored to have them all the way from Southern California! 

With one foot deeply rooted in classic surf and the other stretching out as far as it can go, the Mystery Men? create a wall of sound utilizing three guitars to weave an intricate sonic tapestry.

The Intoxicators! are dressed to impress in custom suits and sound like tape that was sped up and recorded too hot. I'd say guitarist Gary Evans is one of the top players in the genre, especially here in the Southeast.

The Surge! play traditional surf the way it's meant to be played:  loud, fun, energetic, and heavy on the melodies with tons of style.

Phatlynx started out as an homage to the late, great Link Wray but has really grown into it's own thing.  The band is the brainchild of one of my heroes Crispy Bess, who founded the Instro Summit and played with acts such as Southern Culture on the Skids, Uncle Tupelo, even Tiny Tim!

Caroline & the Ramblers is, in my opinion, Atlanta's greatest roots/rockabilly/classic country combo. We like to mix it up a bit so they'll be our 'turf' portion of the day, giving listeners a break from all that surf and instrumental music.

The Monterreys are an aggressive power trio who mixes surf with flamenco.

All the way from Virginia, SEAWHORSE are a bunch of young guys playing sax-driven surf in horse masks. The quartet can PLAY and are a lot of fun, not to mention hilarious.

The Penetrators were the first surf band I ever saw and made a positively huge impression on me. Tragically, half of the members are no longer with us so members of the Southern surf scene will be filling in alongside the original rhythm section to pay tribute to this iconic band.

Using this festival as an opportunity to look backward, has the surf for Atlanta and the region changed at all in a year or since you started doing the Southern Surf Stomps a few years ago? 

Definitely.  While we've always had a great surf scene, it's been somewhat disjointed. It seems like the Stomp has helped to focus the community and give it more drive. Atlanta has become a destination for surf bands to come play, and is starting to receive some international recognition.

The mid-'90s saw a resurgence of surf music after the heyday in the late '50s and early '60s. It seems to me that, while we might not ever see that kind of growth for any genre specific music again, the surf scene has grown since we last talked last year. Do you see that happening again?

I think surf music is bigger than ever with more bands, festivals, and connectivity through the likes of surfguitar101.com and Facebook. It's just a matter of media attention and/or having a push like that given by Pulp Fiction in the mid-'90's. So it's hard to say whether something like that will happen again but I'm optimistic.

Any goals moving forward?

I'd love to see the festival and our monthly shows become a bigger player on the global stage, attracting bands and fans from all over while bringing attention to the tremendous talent we have here in the Southeast. At home, to reach out to a younger audience and have surf taken more seriously among various media platforms. There is truly something wonderful here in the Southern surf scene just waiting to be discovered. But most of all, we just want keep pushing forward, putting on the best events we possibly can, hopefully making them bigger and better in the process.

Southern Surf StompFest goes down on Sat., Sept. 17. Free. 12 p.m. Little Tree Art Studios, 2834 Franklin St. Avondale Estates. www.littletreeartstudios.com. 

... And don't forget about the kick-off party at Trader Vics with Kinky Waikiki and the Dangling Tassels tonight (Fri., Sept. 16).             20833969         http://dev.creativeloafing.com/image/2016/09/FB_IMG_1474049131979.57dc3590d66bf.png                  A Q&A with Southern Surf StompFest founder Chad Shivers "
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Article

Friday September 16, 2016 06:29 pm EDT
Daikaiju, Insect Surfers, the Mystery Men?, and more bring the sounds of the beach to Avondale Estates | more...
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  string(124) "The group's self-titled debut fits squarely into the Noot d’ Noot lineage while serving to advance its own narrative."
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        &amp;lt;a href="http://frostedorange.bandcamp.com/album/frosted-orange"&amp;gt;Frosted Orange by Frosted Orange&amp;lt;/a&amp;gt;   
  After the funk party juggernaut Noot d’ Noot ended its run a few years back, the members scattered in various directions, towards new bands, DJ gigs, and guest spots. One of these new projects is Frosted Orange. Featuring Crib Notes music writer Mathis Hunter on guitar and vocals, Dr. Kinje on tenor sax and vocals, Richard D. Morris, Jr. on keys, Andrew Morrison on bass, and Lee Corum on drums, the band has unveiled its self-titled debut LP. Despite the tangible connection to its musical past, the album stands on its own merits.
  
  Recognizing most of the members’ names from Noot d’ Noot and its extended, heavily intertwined family doesn’t much prepare listeners for the album. Wildcard drummer Corum drives the music into uncharted territory. Known for his quick, precise drumming with the Purkinje Shift, he brings the same intensity to Frosted Orange. The album opens with a commanding roll that wouldn’t feel out of place on a surf album. The rest of the opening track, “Ride the Pine,” moves with a quickness. Atop Corum’s foundation ride Kinje’s tenor sax and Morris’s plinking keys. For its choruses and solo, Hunter’s guitar straddles the line between hard rock and '80s metal. On “Spin a Yarn,” the band doesn’t stray far from the '60s psych-folk ground that Hunter trod on his 2010 solo album Soft Opening. 
        “Nobody Asked” sounds somewhat familiar with Noot d’ Noot-style funk wanderings, but the more guitar-driven nature of the song separates Frosted Orange from its predecessor. “The Fifth Horseman” and album closer “Strange Wine” have a definite jazz-fusion flavor, and the duel between lead guitar and tenor sax on “Boudin” mirror the epic stylings of John Coltrane. Roadhouse blues shuffle “Don't Mean Nothing” sticks out in the middle of the album, adding some variety to the jazz stylings that form Frosted Orange's basis. The album covers a lot of jazz territory, and takes equally compelling detours.
  
  Frosted Orange has plenty of variety — perhaps, on paper, too much. In practice, though, it works due to the deft, capable performers that make up the band. Driving beats and compelling solos work together to push the album into the stratosphere.The near virtuosic playing never comes at the expense of great songs and a cohesive album. Frosted Orange’s debut fits squarely into the Noot d’ Noot lineage while serving to advance its own narrative. There’s no telling where this project will go, but there’s joy in watching it unfold. ★★★★☆
 
 Frosted Orange plays an album release party at Venkman's on Sat., June 4. With The Pinx, Joe Pettis, and DJ Dookie Platters. $8-$15. 10 p.m. 740 Ralph McGill Blvd. www.venkmans.com.
 
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        &lt;a href="http://frostedorange.bandcamp.com/album/frosted-orange"&gt;Frosted Orange by Frosted Orange&lt;/a&gt;   
  After the funk party juggernaut [https://nootdnoot.bandcamp.com/|Noot d’ Noot] ended its run a few years back, the members scattered in various directions, towards new bands, DJ gigs, and guest spots. One of these new projects is [https://frostedorange.bandcamp.com/|Frosted Orange]. Featuring Crib Notes music writer Mathis Hunter on guitar and vocals, Dr. Kinje on tenor sax and vocals, Richard D. Morris, Jr. on keys, Andrew Morrison on bass, and Lee Corum on drums, the band has unveiled its self-titled debut LP. Despite the tangible connection to its musical past, the album stands on its own merits.
  
  Recognizing most of the members’ names from Noot d’ Noot and its extended, heavily intertwined family doesn’t much prepare listeners for the album. Wildcard drummer Corum drives the music into uncharted territory. Known for his quick, precise drumming with the Purkinje Shift, he brings the same intensity to Frosted Orange. The album opens with a commanding roll that wouldn’t feel out of place on a surf album. The rest of the opening track, “Ride the Pine,” moves with a quickness. Atop Corum’s foundation ride Kinje’s tenor sax and Morris’s plinking keys. For its choruses and solo, Hunter’s guitar straddles the line between hard rock and '80s metal. On “Spin a Yarn,” the band doesn’t stray far from the '60s psych-folk ground that Hunter trod on his 2010 solo album ''Soft Opening''. 
        “Nobody Asked” sounds somewhat familiar with Noot d’ Noot-style funk wanderings, but the more guitar-driven nature of the song separates Frosted Orange from its predecessor. “The Fifth Horseman” and album closer “Strange Wine” have a definite jazz-fusion flavor, and the duel between lead guitar and tenor sax on “Boudin” mirror the epic stylings of John Coltrane. Roadhouse blues shuffle “Don't Mean Nothing” sticks out in the middle of the album, adding some variety to the jazz stylings that form Frosted Orange's basis. The album covers a lot of jazz territory, and takes equally compelling detours.
  
  Frosted Orange has plenty of variety — perhaps, on paper, too much. In practice, though, it works due to the deft, capable performers that make up the band. Driving beats and compelling solos work together to push the album into the stratosphere.The near virtuosic playing never comes at the expense of great songs and a cohesive album. Frosted Orange’s debut fits squarely into the Noot d’ Noot lineage while serving to advance its own narrative. There’s no telling where this project will go, but there’s joy in watching it unfold. ★★★★☆
 
 ''[/atlanta/frosted-orange-plays-an-album-release-party-at-venkmans-on-sat-june-4-with-the-pinx-joe-pettis-and-dj-dookie-platters/Event?oid=17264629|Frosted Orange plays an album release party at Venkman's on Sat., June 4. With The Pinx, Joe Pettis, and DJ Dookie Platters. $8-$15. 10 p.m. 740 Ralph McGill Blvd. www.venkmans.com.]''
 
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        &amp;lt;a href="http://frostedorange.bandcamp.com/album/frosted-orange"&amp;gt;Frosted Orange by Frosted Orange&amp;lt;/a&amp;gt;   
  After the funk party juggernaut Noot d’ Noot ended its run a few years back, the members scattered in various directions, towards new bands, DJ gigs, and guest spots. One of these new projects is Frosted Orange. Featuring Crib Notes music writer Mathis Hunter on guitar and vocals, Dr. Kinje on tenor sax and vocals, Richard D. Morris, Jr. on keys, Andrew Morrison on bass, and Lee Corum on drums, the band has unveiled its self-titled debut LP. Despite the tangible connection to its musical past, the album stands on its own merits.
  
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  Frosted Orange has plenty of variety — perhaps, on paper, too much. In practice, though, it works due to the deft, capable performers that make up the band. Driving beats and compelling solos work together to push the album into the stratosphere.The near virtuosic playing never comes at the expense of great songs and a cohesive album. Frosted Orange’s debut fits squarely into the Noot d’ Noot lineage while serving to advance its own narrative. There’s no telling where this project will go, but there’s joy in watching it unfold. ★★★★☆
 
 Frosted Orange plays an album release party at Venkman's on Sat., June 4. With The Pinx, Joe Pettis, and DJ Dookie Platters. $8-$15. 10 p.m. 740 Ralph McGill Blvd. www.venkmans.com.
 
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Friday June 3, 2016 01:17 pm EDT
The group's self-titled debut fits squarely into the Noot d’ Noot lineage while serving to advance its own narrative. | more...
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Tuesday May 24, 2016 12:30 pm EDT
Omni hosts a Deluxe album listening party Fri., July 8, in the Brig at Argosy. | more...
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