Hip-Hop, Rap from Birmingham AL

Hailing from Birmingham, AL, Ryan Howell and John McNaughton make up the experimental hip-hop duo known as Nerves Baddington. Ryan and John are 20-year veterans of the Birmingham music scene, having previously performed in Valerie #4 and Entropy together in the late 1990s.
Ryan and John parted ways after Entropy and Ryan turned to hip-hop and honed his skills as an MC with Birmingham group Abstract Chemistry and eventually relocated to Denver to pursue hip-hop full time. He attained considerable success under the Inkline moniker, sharing the stage (as part of the group ManeLine) with national acts such as Dilated Peoples, Hieroglyphics, The Pharcyde and Gnarls Barkley. John continued to play in punk and indie rock inspired bands (Dorian Grey, Greycoat and Kinoflux).
After returning to Birmingham, Ryan spent most of his time writing music for a solo Inkline album entitled Stones Cry which was eventually released in early 2014; he also wrote a handful of songs with a guitar that did not fit the Inkline aesthetic, but were crafted with the same brutal honesty and social commentary. Howell reached out to McNaughton and Nerves Baddington was born.
In preparation for Birmingham’s fourth annual Secret Stages festival, the duo adapted tracks from Stones Cry for the stage and at the same time began perfecting seven songs that would soon become their first EP as Nerves Baddington, released in December 2014. Three accompanying music videos have been released and a fourth video is currently in post-production, due for an early 2016 release. The duo is constantly writing and performing new material.
Nerves Baddington have played some of Birmingham’s favorite venues including The Firehouse, Iron City, Bottletree, Saturn and Syndicate Lounge. They have performed as part of Birmingham’s best annual festivals such as Secret Stages, Sidewalk Film Festival and High Five Fest as well as the first installment of an AL.com series highlighting local bands and breweries.
Nerves Baddington is the culmination of the life experience and multifarious musical influences of Howell and McNaughton. Inkline’s effortless flow and wordplay is just as evident and prolific here as it was with his solo material and his work with ManeLine. The duo lean on their punk and shoegaze influences through their use of effects, synths and other unconventional instruments, as well as their choices of samples.

Nerves Baddington combine programming and live instrumentation in a unique and exciting manner on record and, especially onstage, where they take pride in delivering an impassioned performance. This DIY aesthetic makes Nerves Baddington a unique change of pace for a hip-hop or a rock bill. With energetic new songs, a revamped live show and an ear toward societal issues, Nerves Baddington is ready to turn heads, no matter the size of the stage or the diversity of the bill.

Nowhere Squares

Frustrated geekrock spazz-out shit from Birmingham AL

Frantic self-help music for the embarrassed nerd in us all.

We are all coworkers at an undisclosed business and this band started after hours in the company basement as a form of 'recreational therapy'.

Rock from Birmingham AL

In March 2016, Will Stewart headed back home to Alabama.

He'd been away for years, living in Nashville while earning his stripes as a songwriter, frontman, and lead guitarist. His fans reached as far away as London, where The Guardian — one of the U.K.'s most widely-reached papers — hailed his work.

Still, something kept drawing him down South. He'd grown up there, surrounded by the twang of classic country music and the stomp of rootsy rock & roll. Alabama was a complicated place, its history filled with dark characters and cultural clashes, but it was oddly compelling, too. It was home. Unable to resist the pull, Stewart returned to Birmingham. There, after a decade away, he rediscovered his muse: the Modern South, whose characters, complexities, open spaces, and strange beauty are all channeled into Stewart's full-length solo debut, County Seat.

Released in 2017, County Seat is a guitar-fueled Americana record, caught somewhere between the worlds of country and electrified rock. The songs are roomy and lush, the result of an inspired — led by Stewart, who handles singing and guitar-playing duties — whose members recorded all nine tracks in two short days. There are swirls of swooning pedal steel, layers of vocal harmony, and the pastoral punch of a songwriter looking to turn the landscape of his home state into music. Close your eyes while playing songs like "Brush Arbor," whose title references Dennis Covington's Salvation on Sand Mountain, and you'll hear Stewart's Alabama home.

County Seat is also a record about time. On the album's title track, Stewart sings about a lonely man in his twilight years, hoping to find some sort of transcendence from an otherwise mundane, day-to-day life. During the nostalgic "Sipsey," Stewart longs for the wonder and innocence of young adulthood. And with "Heaven Knows Why," he takes a look at his own vices, realizing the hour has come to leave some of those habits behind. Like Stewart's own move back to Birmingham, County Seat finds its narrator in constant motion, hoping to weather the mysteries and murkiness of the 21st century South by holding on to a shred of hope.

Co-produced with Les Nuby (who also engineered and mixed the album) and recorded in a series of live takes, County Seat nods to a number of songwriters who sing about the beauty of their homeland without glossing over its imperfections. There are electrified moments influenced by Neil Young, guitar arpeggios suited for R.E.M., turns-of-phrase worthy of Bob Dylan, and the modern-day folksy charm of Hiss Golden Messenger. On an album that evokes some heavy starpower, though, Will Stewart shines the brightest. This is his first full-length release as a solo artist: a rallying cry from a Son of the South who, having returned home after a long trip, looks at his birthplace with renewed eyes.

Dree Leer

Indie from Birmingham AL

Dree Leer is what happens when three teens of the 90s get together and play loud, fuzz-driven, three chord, rock music.

It's been 6 years since Jackie Lo (guitar/vox) released an album and with a handful of songs she approached her friends Tim Frazier (Me and My Knife/drums) and Mandy Graffeo (aka Starstuff/bass) to join her as Dree Leer.

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