I started snapping photos almost immediately upon my arrival at Austin’s Clive Bar – site of the Atlanta-driven SXSW showcase hosted by Atlanta-based record label Pretty Ambitious and yours truly, Purge ATL. Six of ATL’s indigenous bands had braved the 900+ mile journey to be featured at ATL Gets Weird as well as several other showcases at a variety of Austin venues.
Abby GoGo, Mermaids, Sealions, & Turf War
Although this particular bill was kicked off and closed out by two non-Atlanta artists (Leif Vollebekk from Montreal played first, and Light Pollution from Chicago played last), what seemed to really stand out about the massive lineup was the sense of mutual respect and appreciation among Atlanta’s acts: Little Tybee, Sealions, Turf War, The Back Pockets, Mermaids, and Abby GoGo. It was a comraderie that, throughout the several days which followed, seemed to persist and grow – culminating in what could only be described as a beautiful, scary, and very psychadelic Atlanta artist and industry party in a field just outside Austin Saturday night. One band member was even nearly devoured by an alligator venturing too far out into the Colorado River. He would later claim – much to the amusement of all present – to have been tracking a ferocious Loch Ness Bieber. Needless to say, it was much too dark – and considerably too crazy – for incriminating photos.
Emily Kempf of Back Pockets
Altogether, ATL Gets Weird brought a stellar lineup to SXSW 2011, and over the course of the day more than 700 South by South-westerners showed up to drink beer and dig some of ATL’s finest. Atlanta’s own popsicle mastermind, King of Pops, was even on hand to keep us cool. The show wrapped up near sunset and I put down my camera to enjoy the fruits of our labor. Returning home, I’m glad to see everyone made it back to Atlanta all in one piece… literally.
Kerry Gibson of Pretty Ambitious, Turf War
Steven Carse, King of Pops
Sealions. Photo by Max Blau
The Back Pockets
Mermaids, Jhoni Jackson
Pretty Ambitious & Mermaids
Pretty Ambitious & Abby GoGo
Pretty Ambitious, Abby GoGo, & Turf War
Pretty Ambitious & Sealions
Sealions somewhere in Alabama on the long trek back from Austin