On the forefront of Atlanta’s thriving punk community, Upchuck are bound together by a purity of intention, an organic loyalty to a thick knot of uncalculated friendships, struggles, and desires. These are songs about the joy of continuing to live, songs that find each other in the rush of a crushing reality, propelling the listener onward towards a collective release. Themes of surviving through the night, youth-blinded love and chaotic street protests are subsumed under a single unifying thread: the needs we have for one another, our shared hunger for connection. In a world saturated with arbitrary rules and paper-thin moralism, Upchuck offer freedom through sensation, a type of unserious transcendence found through the swirl of bodies melting into one another in the passion of dance.
Today they’ve announced their new album Bite the Hand That Feeds, coming October 13 via Famous Class. Its opener and lead single “Freaky” puts frontwoman Kaila Thompson’s (KT) self-described alter-ego on full display, riffing upon her hunger to let loose and lean into the open-ended freedom of the long, chaotic night. It’s a cry that places joy front and center, carving out a space to live loudly in the face of daily struggles. Upchuck’s signature blend of high-impact style is put on full, muscular display as the track jolts with weaving jungle-rhythms that evoke the finer side of oddball-punk forebears.
“Freaky”’s accompanying video comes as an ode to Paul Reubens and Peew-ee’s Big Adventure which Upchuck and director Ian Cone filmed and created a month back. Check it out below.
Formed in 2018 through shared connections in Atlanta’s teeming skate scene, Upchuck’s musical aspirations have always been uncomplicated. They play for each other, and for anyone who is willing to move alongside them—there are no trappings of genre worship or social politicking in their sound, only an open spirit of friendly connection. 2022 saw the release of their first LP, Sense Yourself (Famous Class), which spread like wildfire across the scene and landed them tours alongside Amyl and the Sniffers, Negative Approach, OFF! and others.
With Bite the Hand That Feeds, Upchuck isn’t trying to tell anyone how to live. Rather, they are simply trying to find a way to make life more worth living for both themselves and their friends—if the music compels you to move, you might as well consider yourself their friend too.
This Fall, Upchuck are back on the road, this time with frequent collaborator and friend, Faye Webster. Highlights include three nights supporting her at NYC’s Brooklyn Steele, two nights at D.C.’s 9:30 Club, Philadelphia, Boston and more including a hometown album release party at Aisle 5. For tickets go here, for all dates see below.
Aug 26: Durham, NC – LFG Fest at Motorco Music Hall
Sep 30: Athens, GA – September Days at Southern Brewing Company
Oct 13: Atlanta, GA – Aisle 5 (Record Release Show)
Oct 17: Washington, DC – 9:30 Club ~
Oct 18: Washington, DC – 9:30 Club ~
Oct 20: Boston, MA – Roadrunner ~
Oct 21: Philadelphia, PA – Franklin Music Hall ~
Oct 23: Brooklyn, NY – Brooklyn Steel ~
Oct 24: Brooklyn, NY – Brooklyn Steel ~
Oct 25: Brooklyn, NY – Brooklyn Steel ~
Oct 27: Toronto, ON – History ~
Oct 29: Chicago, IL – The Riviera Theatre ~
Oct 30: Minneapolis, MN – First Avenue ~
Nov 16: Atlanta, GA – The Eastern ~
Nov 17: Atlanta, GA – The Eastern ~
~ w/ Faye Webster
Photo Courtesy: Cory Jones