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Athens, Georgia, United States | INDIE

Athens, Georgia, United States | INDIE
Band Country Avant-garde


This band has not uploaded any videos
This band has not uploaded any videos



"Futurebirds Rock Harder Than Whatever Else You're Listening To"

:) - LastFM


The world needs more alt-country with doom on its shoulders. Athens, Georgia’s Futurebirds’ “Battle for Rome” is music for the apocalypse set in 1855, the gold rush drying to dust and fires on the horizon.

If Futurebirds’ full-length debut, Hampton’s Lullaby, were a weather report, it would be hazy and humid, with a chance of thundershowers after dark.
AV Club – “B”

Over the weeks I’ve spent with the advanced copy, the album has gone from good to spectacular.

Now, present day, I’m listening to the forthcoming Futurebirds album Hampton’s Lullaby, due July 27th on Autumn Tone records, and more than a little regret ridden having missed my chance to see this powerhouse live. They are definitely a band worth sticking around for.
Muzzle of Bees

Coming out of Athens, Georgia, Futurebirds are a many headed monster that utilize their surroundings well by blending the boogie and soulful aspects of southern rock with the experimental and reverb heavy elements of the alternative music that sprouted there… GET THIS RECORD sure to be on my end of the year list!
Seizure Chicken

Harmon Drive thinks Hampton’s Lullaby is the perfect blend of rock n roll likely influenced by classic country among many others. With four members rotating on vocals, and earnest harmonies, this album is constantly changing pace keeping any listener wanting to listen to it on repeat.
Harmon Drive

Falling somewhere between The Band and early My Morning Jacket, the songs on Futurebirds’ excellent debut album Hampton’s Lullaby are tastefully laced with weeping pedal steel, mandolins, and imbued with a distinct flair for well-crafted and efficient melodies.
Stark Online

Tracks premiered on Largehearted Boy, Rollo & Grady, among others.



"Futurebirds EP"

Athens-based band the Futurebirds give us this eponymous debut EP, a six-pack of boozy, reverb-drenched, minor key country rock numbers. The acid-washed off-key surf guitars put this band amongst more northerly contemporaries like Real Estate and Ducktails, but the psych-cowboy vibe hearkens back to a number of Athens bands of the Elephant 6 era. The vocalists have a singalong style where the second voice slides in at a dissonant interval, creating some high lonesome sounds that make me really love listening to this over and over again. -- Montgomery Morris, WXYC-Chapel Hill Music Director - WXYC-Chapel Hill

"Futurebirds EP"

What the hell is going on? Why can’t I find a single piece of information online about Futurebirds, or anyone that’s ever heard of them, or even a review of a show they’ve played? Their new EP is in a brown cardboard sleeve; it’s hand-painted and the liner notes (if you can call them that) are written in shoddy handwriting with a ball point pen on a tiny square of paper. This becomes even more confusing in the fact that this EP is reeeeeeeaaally good.

Futurebirds’ MySpace page describes the sound of the band as only “a good time.” This album is beyond a good time. It’s a late-'90s, early-2000s flashback to Athens’ Kindercore days, with lazy summertime stoner/wino influences and 100 percent Southern charm. I cut my teeth on Charleston, SC indie rock in this time period, and it reminds me so much of those boozy, sweltering nights that we 20-somethings flourished in so gracefully. With each listen of this EP, I’m taken back to a time when it was fun to just be drunk, surrounded by creative people, and living in the South. The word “Future” in the band’s title is humorous, as its sound isn’t a day over 10 years old.

In each song, one can hear former Athens darlings Masters of the Hemisphere and Charleston’s Aamerican Tenants. While the whole EP is damn-near wonderful, the mandolin on the “Megachills” skips along gentle harmonies that beg to be sung and slurred along to by the crowd. Let’s hope there’s more to come from these local guys; they’re off to an excellent start. --Noel Wurst

- Athens Flagpole Magazine

"Futurebirds : Writer of the Week"

“A rusty chainsaw dropped into tropical fish tank,” or “Frank Zappa’s Mother of Invention fronted by Gram Parsons,” are just a couple of the comparisons jokingly tossed around the American Songwriter offices as the Athens-based Futurebirds lug their gear up the rusty side stairs.

All comparisons aside, it can’t be denied that the Futurebirds are writing their own brand of cosmic American music and taking it across the South’s highways and byways in the muggy summer heat.

The night before the Futurebirds played a raucous set at the Basement’s New Faces Night, and on this Wednesday night, they quickly rub the weariness from their eyes. Even though they’re all young, they’re as professional as any musicians who’ve played in our offices to this date. There are all also more of them; seven Futurebirds in all.

They quickly pick up their instruments, some cups of water and, like settling into a well-worn rocking chair, begin the folk-rock choral number “Breathe for Days.” Voices swell and swirl in the warm office air. And with that, the Futurebirds rock us back and forth through the golden hour of the Wednesday evening with harmony, pysch-rock solos and plucking banjoes. - American Songwriter

"Dig The Futurebirds' off-kilter pop"

At first listen, the music of the Futurebirds might sound like some forgotten gem from the 1970s, but halfway through the group's eponymous debut EP, it becomes clear why this Athens-based band is generating more buzz than a beehive hit with a stick.

The group infuses their sound with a thoroughly modern spin, reinventing choral alt-country with contradictions aplenty.

Most of them share vocal duties and can claim multi-instrumental skills, with Carter King on drums, guitar, and banjo; and Payton Bradford also on drums, mandolin, and guitar. Daniel Womack alternates between guitar and banjo, while Thomas Johnson takes his turn on guitar, banjo, and mandolin. Brannen Miles plays bass, and Dennis Love tackles the steel guitar. Jessica Holt, vocalist, is an occasional contributor.

Further evidence that the Futurebirds are indeed of the future, and not just a rediscovered relic? Check out the requisite displays of youthfulness: ill-advised facial hair, ironic T-shirts, and plenty of good-natured sarcasm and silliness at every turn. Example: King replies with an earnest "Yes, ma'am" when asked a question, and then gleefully attributes the band's success and hype to "a good night's sleep, thorough stretch routines, and calling our mothers every day."

Taking their name from a class King took on "poultry evaluation," the Futurebirds were originally just a bunch of friends playing in other bands, drinking at the same bar night after night. And then something changed.

"Last fall, we started getting together to play for fun, and we could just tell we were all on the same wavelength," King recalls. "On one occasion, we were playing some covers, screwing around. Payton was playing an upright piano which was completely indiscernible amongst the rest of us banging out annoyingly loud electric guitars. He was gritting his teeth and profusely sweating. His face was like a fire engine as he mercilessly beat the keys. He stood up and kicked his chair across the room, and continued to play what could, to this day, be the greatest inaudible piano solo ever played. Ever."

There aren't a lot of pounding piano solos on the Futurebirds' debut, but every song sounds perfectly homespun, as if it was recorded with a giant mic in the middle of a circle, with the band singin' and bangin' and strummin', guided only by instinct, not outcome. The EP matches the Futurebirds' personality perfectly: beautifully offbeat and slightly sloppy, full of rockin' hymns that could alternately soothe a drunk or incite a cowboy. -- Andrea Warner
- Charleston City Paper

"Flocking to a Familiar Sound"


Together, Athens' Futurebirds Found What They Were After

They had the big show booked, the studio time slotted, the songs poised for production. What they didn’t have was time. It was the start of March, and the seven members of Futurebirds were rushing to record an EP to showcase at their March 4 gig opening for Blitzen Trapper at the 40 Watt. Playing in different groups over the years, the band members had a good feeling about their brewing, underground sound. But something else was brewing overhead.?

“We wanted to record in two days, but we had to record in two and a half days because we got snowed out,” said Carter King, Futurebirds’ “grease-stained monkey wrench” (code for vocals, guitar, banjo and keys player), of the freak snowstorm that left Athens in a deep carpet of white. “It never snows in Athens. We were just trying to crank that out. We got some cardboard sleeves, I made a stencil, and we spray-painted the stencils all crazy — some of them sucked, some were cool — and just gave them out.”

In a few furious days, Futurebirds’ good feeling was confirmed. And now flocks of listeners are heading their direction. Fresh yet familiar, the eponymous six-track EP (available for download at futurebirds.bandcamp.com) is exactly what the seven sought. A mixture of melodies accompanies a healthy helping of guitar, banjo, mandolin, keys and pedal steel in a wide-ranging free-for-all that’s difficult to describe — though King gave it a shot.?

“What I’ve heard, which I like the best, is we’re psychedelic cowboy country-esque but with a definite weirdo edge to it,” he said. “Everybody plays something different on every song.”?

For some, the sound evokes the Athens of a dozen years ago, when the denizens of the scene were ruled by Elephant 6 and Kindercore bands. King was intrigued after hearing his band compared to Olivia Tremor Control and Masters of the Hemisphere, though notes there was never any intention to mimic them. He hardly knew who they were.?

“I knew a little bit about them being an Athens resident — you kind of have to — but I didn’t really do a bunch of investigating until we heard all that comparison stuff,” he said. “People go, ‘You sound like these bands,’ but I haven’t really listened to those bands. I guess Athens just has that kind of feel.”?

Joining King in this latest enterprise are buddies from previous (and present) ventures and buddies who moved from other projects. Payton Bradford (drums), Thomas Johnson (mandolin, guitar) and Brannen Miles (the bassist who took over for China-bound Reid Scott) anchor Futurebirds; they also play with King in The Interns, a folk rock outfit started after they met as (you guessed it) interns at Chase Park Transduction Studios. Daniel Womack (guitar), Dennis Love (pedal steel) and Jessica Holt (percussion, vocals) round out the crew. ?

An online roster of band members lists an eighth Futurebird, one with a curious yet familiar name: Reverend Cleophus James, master of the doom stick. After a little investigating, the truth is revealed; Rev. James was the name of James Brown’s character in the cult classic “The Blues Brothers.”?

“Yeah, James Brown is in the band,” King said with a laugh. “He’s our spiritual adviser.”?

Summertime saw the band line up dates in Nashville, Tennessee; Atlanta; New Orleans and Austin, Texas. And while the wanderlust is the sign of a band raring to go, unlike the recording of the auspicious EP, King said this time they’re not in any particular hurry.

?“We all met in college and had all been in a few different bands, but no one was getting the kind of sound they were after,” King said. “But we found it. It was a slow evolution and it is all working itself out. We’re all still young and fresh — we’re not in a rush.” - Athens Blur Magazine

"Hampton's Lullaby Review"

We caught Futurebirds on our last day of SxSW 2010 at an outdoor stage in a gravel parking lot with temps hovering at 34 degrees. The Athens six-piece took the stage with humble character and complete sincerity, then turned on a set that had them leaping from the stage, rocking off their prescription glasses and trucker hats.

Futurebirds’ have already earned an early foundation of devotees by delivering their debut EP as a free download. They’re now ready to release their debut full-length, Hampton’s Lullaby, on July 13th. Over the weeks I’ve spent with the advanced copy, the album has gone from good to spectacular. It’s an album for outdoor keggers. For high-fives around campfires. For distance-spitting chewing tobacco. For deep-frying your food. For arm wrestling on bales of hay. For growing a thick beard with a trimming boycott.

Songs feature 4-part harmonies and pedal steel soaring over mandolin, banjo, acoustic and electric guitars in an array of songs that call on several genres to create its own brand of Country-Grunge. As I listen to the album, I hear shades of My Morning Jacket, Uncle Tupelo, The Rolling Stones, Dinosaur Jr, and early Kings of Leon. Notable tracks include Johnny Utah, APO, Sam Jones, Battle For Rome, and Ski Chalet.

We had the band in studio for a HearYa Live Session that’ll be released in the coming days/weeks and Hampton’s Lulluby is out next Tuesday. Until then, I recommend downloading the free EP and soak in a live show if they pass through your neck of the woods. They’ll earn every penny of your admission.
- HearYa

"Futurebirds - "Megachills" / "Dirty D""

(Autumn Tone is set to release Futurebirds debut full-length, Hampton’s Lullaby, next month. The record is a monster. Below we revisit the EP. Catch it before it’s (hint) taken off bandcamp.)

For whatever reason, or maybe a few specific ones, when I think of Futurebirds, I think of the Violent Femmes intro: “The Violent Femmes, they bring all their equipment on the bus. And you can’t fuck with the Violent Femmes. You cannot fuck with this band.”

In reality, you probably could try to fuck with Futurebirds, they just wouldn’t care. Because they’re affable folk, and their southern dream rock–if there were such a thing–is easier going than it is aggressive. Futurebirds’ just slightly degraded lo-fi submersion and pedal steel trance create a fuzzy, dream-like veneer that cushions a rotating trio of vocal leads, and more than a helping of communal harmonies. Still, it’s doubtful you would fuck with this band, not by appearances. Their cast of characters includes at least one John Bell/Jim James bastard child, one half-Cherokee and Choctaw, and an uncanny Will Oldham doppelganger. And indeed, that is also probably an apt reference to their influence: 21st century Indian outlaw southern indie-rock, eccentric folk. That swings.

And Futurebirds do, in fact, bring all of their equipment on the bus, including a light-projector ready-made for pickup house parties of which they’re certainly regular attendees in their hometown of Athens, Ga. And that probably defines their self-titled EP, released earlier this year, better than anything else. They’re kids. Partiers. Making music with what’s available to them, and doing whatever they can to make it. We described them before as DIY, and it is just as blue-collar, unpretentious and unfettered as that. Their lyrics aren’t overly sophisticated, but they needn’t be either, since they strike at exactly where the band is right now–early adulthood, few responsibilities, multiple questions, making music, hoping it all works out. For someone who’s sitting in a purgatorial age–not that anymore, but not the next thing either–that’s refreshingly optimistic, even if they don’t intend it to be.

Futurebirds (or rather, FUTUREBIRDS, because they “like it up there in all caps”), have been barnstorming in front of their first full-length out on Autumn Tone later this summer. It began with a (very) last-minute entry to SXSW, where they played a handful of shows (including one pickup gig at a house party, lights in tow), and it has continued with stretches along the east coast. The EP probably won’t properly prepare you for their live set if you catch one of those shows–which are decidedly more energetic/nuts–but it is a nice palate whetter for the forthcoming long-player, an appropriate introduction to a band you just can’t fuck with. words/ j crosby
- Aquarium Drunkard

"Futurebirds - "Johnny Utah""

Apparently my recent comment about picked-over music cities has gotten the Irish up in some folks. Some prominent citizens of Athens have been particularly vocal in support of their evergreen scene, specifically a little outfit known as Futurebirds, whom I’ve been led to believe are to live performance what the legendary Uga is to quadrupeds. Fair enough. Their debut full-length, Hampton’s Lullaby will be bestowed upon the masses on July 27th thanks to the graciousness of Autumn Tone Records, and while their ardent supporters have suggested comparisons to Deer Tick and Delta Spirit, I can’t help but hear some early American Music Club atmospherics and a dash of Beggars Banquett-era Stones in there. Try’em on and see what you think. - My Old Kentucky Blog


FUTUREBIRDS EP - futurebirdsmusic.bandcamp.com
HAMPTON'S LULLABY -http://autumntone.com/node/30
VIA FLAMINA EP - futurebirdsmusic.bandcamp.com



2011 has been a large year for Futurebirds. The Athens outfit has released two well-received EPs; road-dogged the nation with bands such as Widespread Panic, Drive-By Truckers, Grace Potter and the Nocturnals, Gary Clark, Jr., J Roddy Walston & the Business, Thomas Hardy, and grass giraffes; rocked to rave reviews at Bonnaroo Music Festival and Austin City Limits; and generally simply had a swell time—though brains and livers might scream otherwise.