One of the great but slightly frustrating things about living in this town is knowing that some unspecified mischief is afoot, having a good idea of who and what is involved, and then being unable to actually talk about it until one day your social feeds and phone are blowing up with “BILL BERRY HAS A NEW BAND.”
Yeah, Bill Berry (R.E.M.) is back on drums and you can tell its Mike Mantione (Five Eight) on vocals from the first note. Dave, Geoff, and Christian are no slouches either though! If you’ve been in town for more than a few years chances are you know at least one of them personally. You’ve got a video featuring cameos from our local musicians, the ever welcome Lance Bangs behind the camera, and locally beloved New West records putting out the album (January 20, 2023!). It’s all very Athens-y and we here at AMJ are completely in our element with this.
From SPIN –
“The song and the video are a celebration of Athens,” Mantione says. “The song is also a tribute to Big Star and The Glands. I’m really singing it to a friend who missed this special performance of the Big Star Third album and I’m warning my friend not to miss stuff because life doesn’t last very long. The cameos were just the most fun. I got to drive around Athens with so many awesome friends. We were supposed to look glum, but once they got into the van with me, laughter would erupt. Athens had an incredible, beloved local vegetarian restaurant called The Grit which closed a day before we shot the last of the cameos. We do a drive-by of The Grit as sort of a farewell nod.”
The Bad Ends will play their first live show Nov. 27 at Nuci’s Space in Athens. The venue is “located in the shadow of” St. Mary’s Steeple, the last remnant of the 1871-era church where R.E.M. played its first show on April 5, 1980.