DATE AUCTION Preview: Aye Nako, Didi, Wished Bone, Madeline Toerne / Feb. 12 / The Smiling Skull Saloon

By Devon Hannan, Contributor

Progressiveness, activism, DIY, and  great sounds. What do these things have in common? They are all themes expressed by the bands and artists playing at The Smiling Skull Saloon this Friday. That being said, come out and support the music that supports you.

In addition to the impressive lineup made up of Aye Nako, Didi, Wished Bone, and Madeleine Toerne, this show marks ACRN’s annual Date Auction. You have the opportunity to score gift certificates to great local businesses and other great prizes, just in time for Valentine’s Day. What could possibly make this show any better? Oh yeah, we’re announcing the 2016 Lobsterfest lineup. This is a show you surely don’t want to miss.

Aye Nako, who stemmed from the roots of Brooklyn DIY, is headlining the upcoming show. “For years we released our own music and booked our shows through friends or other bands we met. I think an important aspect of ‘DIY’ is in that it provides the necessary space for people to be able to create and grow something of their own with limited resources like money and connections,” remarked the band.

The band describes their sound as “Sad punk songs about being queer, trans and black.” Their discography greatly reflects that claim. With albums The Blackest Eye and Unleash Yourself, their sound varies, but their mission stays the same.

When discussing DIY and “safe spaces,” Aye Nako says, “You don’t really get to define how other people experience it (DIY), you just do your best and try to constantly grow. Having an agenda that aims to make people feel safer is great and should be a never ending conversation and practice.”

A little bit closer to home is Didi, an experimental rock band from Columbus, Ohio. Comparable to Speedy Ortiz, Didi’s sound resembles heavy pop with an edge. That edge not only being catchy riffs and harmonies, but a sense of girl power. While they are on tour with Aye Nako, they have expressed a lot of the same ideologies.

Next, Wished Bone is Athens’ own folk talent. Pseudio Recordings, released in September, gives off airy, twangy sensations. “To the listener, it probably sounds like warbly folk music,” remarked Ashley Rhodus.

Wished Bone has been playing many shows around Athens lately, to which Rhodus speaks positively. “There is an abundance of support from the entire music community regardless of genre. It always seems like a good mix of folks who go to shows around here.” She also claims that even though the scene is male dominated, it’s changing. This show is a prime example.

Finally, Madeleine Toerne is another one of Athens’ own acoustic acts. Sure to make you feel the Valentine’s Day blues, Toerne’s lyrics and gentle guitar takes her audience on an emotional path through her own experiences and feelings.

This show is sure to make your Valentine’s Day weekend just a little bit sweeter. Come on down to The Skull this Friday, February 12th around 9 p.m. for some awesome prizes and what might end up being your new, favorite band. A $5 cover awaits.

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