Standing out in Atlanta as fresh and interesting is no easy task, considering it’s well-known history of producing the weirdest and most wonderful sounds in hip hop and R&B, including artists like Outkast, Usher, Dungeon Family, Lil Jon, Ludacris, Soulja Boy, and Monica. Awful Records is an exciting Atlanta-based label that proudly continues the city’s innovative traditions. Despite the name, Awful represents a number of talented artists of varying styles and approaches. They are unified by a sense of camaraderie and have maintained an incredibly DIY/In-House approach to the work they produce, which spans cover art, videos, logos and music. The label offer a highly experimental and refreshing contradiction to what many see as an increasingly stagnant and shrinking musical landscape.
Last Thursday at St John at Hackney, a working church which doubles as an epic music space, Awful showcased a range of beautifully explicit and rowdy performances. The eclectic nature of the label ranged from Tommy Genesis’ ‘fetish rap’, to ABRA’s love stories and Father’s lazy sounding bangers, all of whom played alongside special guests Blood Orange and Kilo Kish (and London’s own Siobhan Bell on the 1s and 2s).
I took these photos from the viewing platform where Father made his headlining entrance, amongst mosh pits and masses of gyrating bodies, moving in response to the sound of their favourite tunes. Although the pit at the front would have been safer, I don’t think a sanitary set of photos would have been quite appropriate.