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Jay Crash and Terminus Hate City champion the DIY music scene in Atlanta

Crash first derived the brand’s name from Terminus, Atlanta’s original name, then added “Hate City” as a nod to the old city’s reputation for being “the city too crowded to be hated,” a catchphrase that developed concurrently for Atlanta’s reputation for making economic prosperity the basis for forward-thinking positions on relationships. Interracial. “The city of hate [part of the name] It was an endearing term for rock/punk music.”

However, the Atlanta native is quick to note that the name is meant to carry a certain degree of sharp comment about the reality of the city’s social upheaval. “This is still a ‘hate city,'” he said wistfully. “It’s a very active, forward-thinking, progressive city, but there’s still a lot of things we can work on.”

Crash points out that the popular social activism aspect of the name is something that particularly resonates with the city’s often political punk rock scene.

Among those societal ills, it directly affected Atlanta’s live music scene: gentrification and urban renewal that wiped out many of the resources local musicians depended on, from professional training spaces to performance venues.

For Crash, like many of his fellow rockers, the 2016 Masquerade’s move to Underground Atlanta was a springboard for things to come: Closing the original site meant the end of a community gathering place where multitudes of rockers could gather to enjoy the locals. Businesses – including bars, restaurants and tattoo parlors – that have remained open until late to accommodate the masses of attendees who leave the venue after the shows.

As the city reshaped itself to welcome an influx of young urban professionals into the “trendy” areas of Midtown, Little Five Points, and the East Atlanta Village, renovations came at the cost of closing a lot of local businesses, bars, and performers. The halls that made the areas very attractive in the first place.

The result was an increase in so-called “house venues,” private residences that were renovated to function as concert venues like the catacombs of East Atlanta. It’s a newly emerging scene that Terminus Hate City, with its DIY ethos, is well suited to commuting.

Despite this invigorating shift toward community-centered support, Crash is well aware that stifling and inclusion of the underground music community is detrimental to the music business as a whole. After all, the next big thing has to come from humble origins somewhere. “Atlanta sits in a unique place,” he said. “We are a cultural influencer and a cultural capital who ignore the secret side of things.”

This neglect prompted Crash to express his views at various city council meetings that took place to discuss the future of various live music venues, such as the recent division threat facing Sabbath Brewing Co. , a recurring collection of performances by Terminus Hate City artists. The next show the label hosts is Saturday Brewing Wednesday, featuring the band Lost Trees.

With Star Bar, one of the city’s preeminent concert venues, facing the prospect of being demolished to make way for new development, the future of the local live music scene is precarious at best.

Despite all of his trademark macabre trappings and the city’s constant encroachment on his beloved community, Crash remains cheerful and optimistic about the future. “Atlanta is a theme park,” he says. “Entertainment makes people happy. It stops them from thinking they are in the Matrix. It definitely gives me hope.”

Party Preview

Lost Trees, Chidori, Plastique, BAM

Doors open at 6:30 p.m. on October 19. $15. Saturday Brewing, 530 Flat Shoals Ave. SE, Atlanta. sabbathbrewing.com/shows.


Meet our partner

ArtsATL (www.artsatl.org), is a non-profit organization that plays a critical role in educating and informing the public about the arts and culture of Metro Atlanta. Founded in 2009, ArtsATL aims to help build a sustainable arts community that contributes to the city’s economic and cultural health.

If you have any questions about this or other partnership, please contact Senior Partnerships Manager Nicole Williams at nicole.williams@ajc.com.


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