An Evening at the Flatiron: Two Very Different Accounts.

Feb 24th, 2012 | By | Category: Entertainment, Sounds

This is a once in a blue moon collaboration of Nathan Lee and Avalon Kenny, who are coming together to tell you about a recent evening involving Summit Avenue’s favorite dive bar, wonderful local music, and too much beer.

Time Sawyer

Nathan: This past Friday I went to The Flatiron with the lovely Avalon Kenny. I had never been before, but Avalon’s description of it made it sound like a treasure chest filled with magical golden instruments and alcohol, so I was excited. On the way in, I encountered a man standing by the door beat-boxing to himself. I stood next to him and listened to his lips drum against his tongue while I smoked a cigarette. I thought about how a chimney on a building across the street looked like a man with two penises pointing his erections at the sky, and about how scarily-intelligent octopuses are nowadays. Then I thought I saw a monster scuttle under a car, so I decided to venture in and finally see Greensboro’s indigenous music that people keep talking about.

Avalon: I probably spend too much of my time at The Flatiron. It’s incredibly hard to stay away, especially on the weekends where it plays host to beautiful musicians and their beautiful songs. This past Friday, the patrons of The Flat were graced by the always lovely Emily Stewart and the Baby Teeth, along with Rising Son and Time Sawyer. It was an evening full of rich, deep-south sounding music and dancing. The $2 PBR special made me feel like a true NASCAR-watching, country-singing southerner. Let’s go, Richard Petty.

Nathan: Avalon was right about that place. I felt like I walked into an alien spaceship that was painted to look like a bar. Why is everyone here so attractive? Don’t these people have crippling addictions that they should be nursing? Why does it feel like everyone’s eyes are just a little too large? These are all things that I wondered as I wandered around touching people’s hands (to see if they were clammy).

Emily Stewart and the Baby Teeth

Avalon: Rising Son played first, taking the stage at about 10 PM. Their twangy sound was complimented by mandolin and banjo, along with traditional bluegrass instruments like bass, guitar, and drums. They played several original songs, as well as a country version of “Can’t Hardly Wait” by The Replacements. Instead of horns, the singer played mandolin. That was pretty cool – it’s probably my favorite Replacements song. Rising Son was definitely enjoyable, and a band you should look into if you enjoy Southern music.

Rising Son’s set was pretty short – Time Sawyer were onstage by 10:40 for a 15 minute soundcheck. Before they played their first song, they announced that they’d have to take a ‘pee break,’ so it was really more like 11 before they started playing. Their sound took me back to beach trips as a kid, when we’d listen to Ryan Adams’ ‘Gold’ over and over while we passed sand dunes and sea grass. It’s pure Americana, with hints of blues here and there. Like true hipsters, each member had on an article of clothing that was patterned with plaid, and halfway through their set, they covered MGMT’s “Kids.” Their set inspired several people to spin each other across the small space between the pool table and the wall. They played until about 12:10, a rather long set that included one encore.

Lastly came Emily Stewart and the Baby Teeth at 12:30, accompanied by Matty Sheets on slide guitar. The night before the show, Emily (vocals and guitar), Matty, and Doug Shadwick (bass) played a two song set on my radio show on WUAG (Concert Preview – Thursdays 7-9PM) so I was already pumped. The Baby Teeth are the kind of country music I enjoy, grabbing influences from Guy Clark (they covered “Don’t Let the Sunshine Fool You” beautifully) and Bob Dylan. Along with the cover, they played originals like “Two Feet on The Ground,” “Wayne Dangle” (a cute song about Lil P from the Painted Skull’s dad), and “Something,” which is my personal favorite. Their songs remind me of being barefoot in the summer, and make me want to twirl in circles with whoever will join me. Definitely a great band that never fails to impress.

Nathan: When the music began I was first worried that it was all a clever ruse to hypnotize me with something pleasant and familiar, but I actually enjoyed the folksy tunes that were played. All the bands used some sort of instrument that I had never seen on earth before, but Avalon told me that they were more common the closer you got to the sun. There is one thing that I was certain, however: Emily Stewart had a voice that was strange and other-worldly. She sounds like what you would expect baby stars to sound like when they want the universe’s milk. Her voice is wonderful, and I wish I knew the spell she used to sound like that.

Avalon: In all seriousness, these are great bands. The Baby Teeth are currently recording with Snüzz – keep an eye out for their record. Time Sawyer have a Kickstarter so they can release their own album. Check them out on the interwebs:

Emily Stewart and the Baby Teeth

Time Sawyer

Rising Son

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