In Latin, the word "terminus" is literally defined as "boundary stone." I would like to thank Google for providing me with that direct information, as I immediately translated it as "an end." Terminus--like a railroad or airport terminal. It's the end of one pathway, yet the beginning of another. The more obvious definition is valid as well. This I also learned from Google. Toss in the phrasing of Merriam-Webster, and you have "an extreme point or element." All of these, when lumped together, essentially create the same characterization of the same word. Step to the extreme point, or the boundary of border, and you've simultaneously reached the end of one road, and the beginning of another. With all that rambling out of the way, I will now attempt to drift to my point.
Atlanta, GA is definitely a hot spot for powerful, creative, driven, intelligent music. New Terminus, a rock outfit derived from the gritty 1990s style of song writing and performance, is one piece of this colorful puzzle. If you were to dissect the technical meaning of their name, perhaps they could be considered a new beginning resulting from an end. The band played a show at Savannah's The Wormhole back in November, where I had the chance to witness their energy, as well as spend some time getting acquainted with the members themselves. What I saw was unpretentious rock n' roll. In a pre-show write-up for website NewYorkisBoring.com, I offered Savannah residents the opportunity to come out and experience the "spirit of garage rock," which is exactly what New Terminus brought to The Wormhole that night. Friends were there as a show of support, and in between sets, the speakers resounded with the sounds of alt-rock favorites such as Sunny Day Real Estate.
Yes, I Digress
A rock show isn't just about a stage and its performers. It is also about those who contribute to its execution--the physical venue; the venue's proprietors; the bar stool dwellers who wandered in for a beer; the dialogues, exchanges and movements. That night, New Terminus' drummer Dallas Peavy did double duty, performing as a duo with impromptu set-up Fuzzy Dunlop. New Terminus also offered up the headlining slot to Nirvana aficionados Pure Ed, whose 3 chord grunge tributes conjured up memories of the Northwest musical revolution of yesteryear.
There were Mad Libs books out on the bar for patrons to enjoy. One such attendee was a white-haired man, whose words and demeanor distinctly reminded me of Ernest Hemingway. After the show, the members of New Terminus and I went for some late night breakfast at the Pankake Palace, and discussed such things as day jobs, higher education and pets.
What I love about rock n' roll is its innate simplicity. Beyond the shiny images and elaborate wording is a very basic human-to-human exchange--a certain degree of companionship and generosity--that is far removed from the glamor often ascribed to it. It truly involves groups of people who work beyond their songs, simply as a means of sustaining themselves; yet who take on the extra load of travel and arrangement because they genuinely enjoy the process itself.
-New Terminus will be playing at Atlanta's Highland Ballroom on Saturday, January 15th at 9PM. They will be joined by The Color and Little Horn.
-Drummer Dallas Peavy also plays with Atlanta-based Ricer, who can be seen at The Jinx in Savannah, GA on Friday, January 21st at 10PM. They will be joined by Indian Giver, as well as local post-punk favorites Howler.