Breaking up is hard to do for Atlanta’s Carbonas

Is the lauded local punk band Carbonas breaking up? The answer isn’t a simple yes or no.

When fliers for the band’s show (opening for Canadian hardcore band Fucked Up at the Earl) started appearing around town, word spread that it was to be Carbonas’ last stand. In passing, guitarist Gentleman Jesse Smith offered a cryptic, “Yeah, but not really.”

Vocalist Greg King clarifies that the rumors are mostly true, but it’s not the end of Carbonas, at least not yet. “We don’t want to promote this as our last show and then look like jackasses if we want to play again,” King laughs. “We may do another show in the spring, but this is the last one for a while.”

The reasons behind the imminent hiatus are multilayered, but mostly rooted in conflicting schedules. Since Gentleman Jesse released his self-titled full-length in July of last year, both Smith and Carbonas drummer Dave Rahn have focused their time on Gentleman Jesse songs. In the meantime, King is still writing songs but rather than remain in a holding pattern, he’s moving on. Recently he’s been writing for a new project dubbed G.G. King. The groan-worthy name was bestowed upon him by Smith. “Jesse came up with the name,” he says. “I came up with Gentleman Jesse and he hates that name, so I guess he wanted revenge. He came up with G.G. King in honor of Dee Dee King and GG Allin.”

The reference to such grotesque punk icons is in name only. King has recorded two songs, “Adult Rock” and “In the Terminal,” for a 7-inch that will be out later this year on Douchemaster Records. Both songs were recorded with King playing drums and singing with Smith (bass) and Carbonas guitarist Chris Van Etten. “I’m playing with people who were in Carbonas and the new stuff sounds like Carbonas,” King says. “It should be plenty confusing for everybody.”