Before I jump into this review, there are some things that I should mention about why this show was significant for me and many other in the area who attended – for starters, Acid King is a legendary stoner/doom metal band out of Oakland, CA and was one of the first bands in its genre to be fronted by a woman, the great Lori S. Secondly, Acid King have very rarely ever toured the Southeast, preferring the West Coast and Midwest for shows. Playing in Atlanta for the first time EVER in their 25+ years of existence was a huge, HUGE deal to everyone I talked to – some of them seasoned musicians themselves.
Now onward to the actual review. I arrived to the show about an hour in and subsequently missed Halmos, the first opener (bit of a bummer, but ATL traffic yields to no one). I did arrive just in time for Order of the Owl, an ATL doom metal outfit that I’ve seen live close to ten times over the past four years. If you’re not familiar with their music, I’d suggest looking them up on Spotify. They’ve only gotten tighter as a band over the years and are currently working on their second album, so be on the lookout.
When Acid King took the stage, the crowd fell into a deafening hush at first, but soon became much more lively as song after song poured out. Lori, a woman who is likely all of 5’2″, seemed gigantic while playing and singing. Her guitar sound and gear rig is absolutely nothing to mess with – the band sounded as heavy as a sack of bricks. Most of the songs played were newer songs from their most recent release, 2015’s “Middle of Nowhere, Center of Everywhere”, although a few oldies slipped into their set intermittently.
Things reached a fever pitch when the band broke out “2 Wheel Nation”, a biker anthem of sorts and a fan favorite off of their acclaimed 2005 album, III. The set closed with another III track, the 11-minute scorcher “War of the Mind”. Some of my favorite tracks from the band weren’t played, which was a bummer (“Lead Paint” and “Free” would have made the set perfect), but overall their set was a testament to their history of pure sonic power.
Afterwards I got to meet Lori in person (I interviewed her online three years ago for my old blog), and she’s such a down-to-earth person. I think seeing what a huge turnout this show had will be a deciding factor in Acid King playing the Southeast more often, and I certainly hope they tour around here sooner than later.