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Atlas Sound Comes Home


It’s not often that you catch a frontman call for his father’s approval from center stage, but, then again, Bradford Cox is no ordinary frontman. Cox’s new project, Atlas Sound, made their hometown proud in Atlanta last night (Feb. 19) as the group kicked off their tour at hipster-haven the Drunken Unicorn to a crowd of family, friends and fans. Earnestly asking his father and sister for reassurance from across the room, Cox and Co. worked their way through a few kinks and busted strings for a show that rested upon Cox’s charming personality as much as the strength and sound of the newly arranged Atlas Sound tunes.

The “Atlas Sound Music Group” — Cox, joined by Adam Forkner (guitar), Honey Owens (bass) along with Stephanie Macksey (drums) and Brian Foote (electronics) — mixed ambience and electronics with a rollicking rock’n’roll spirit for a set culled from the Deerhunter frontman’s hot-off-the-presses solo debut Let the Blind Lead Those Who See But Cannot Feel, including songs “Bite Marks,” “Atavan” and a new, rather unrecognizable, arrangement of “Scraping Past.” A more ambient and electronic endeavor than Deerhunter, the show also found Cox trading in the frilly frocks he’s known for in favor of a simple white T-shirt.

With an encore laden with jokes and attempted covers of Soundgarden’s “Spoonman” and the Grateful Dead’s “Operator,” Atlas Sound finally closed out the night with a fan-favorite, the Internet-issued tune “Requiem for All the Lonely Teenagers with Passed Out Moms,” mixed with a little bit of Tom Petty’s “Mary Jane’s Last Dance.” As the band took a triumphant bow and the night officially came to an end, everyone in the crowd felt like family. NATALIE B. DAVID / PHOTOS BY JULIA NORMAN

We asked: The name Atlas Sound comes from the tape machine Bradford Cox has used since the sixth grade. What sentimental object would you name a band after?