Sunday, May 19, 2024

The Georgia Thunderbolts Stand Up!

The Georgia Thunderbolts sophomore album, Rise Above It All, is set for release on 23rd August via Mascot Records. Featuring the quintet’s signature blend of Southern rock, blues, and heartfelt Americana, the 13-track album is said to showcase the band’s ability to navigate a vast array of musical terrains, while also capturing the profound emotional and artistic growth fostered by their years on the road. “When you cut back on being a tough guy, more emotions can come through, and you hear that on this record,” said TJ Lyle, lead vocalist, harmonica and keyboard player with the band, adding. “This album travels all musical genres.”

To celebrate the announcement, the band released the album’s latest single, Stand Up, accompanied by a music video directed byJim Arbogast. The video captures the band in their element, performing a powerful track that combines slithering guitar riffs and soaring vocals with a Southern rock flair. “I believe this song is relatable to many. It was written with the mindset of overcoming an obstacle I was facing at the time. I hope the listeners can feel that. Perseverance, faith in yourself, and perspective is the key,” said Lyle about the new single.

You can check out the video to ‘Stand Up’ here at RAMzine.

The road to being hailed as the new torchbearers of Southern rock hasn’t been as glamorous as you might imagine for The Georgia Thunderbolts. It wasn’t many years ago that the guys busked at gas stations, fumbled through covers, and drove four hours to Alabama to play to a bartender and a three-legged dog sitting on a barstool.

These days, however, the Rome, Georgia-based quintet is a critically acclaimed and internationally touring band fending off the sophomore slump with its latest release. The Georgia Thunderbolts is rounded out by Zach Everett on bass, classical guitar, harmony vocals; Bristol Perry on drums; Logan Tolbert and Riley Couzzourt on guitars. The quintet’s earthy and emotive aesthetic spans late 1960s singer-songwriter intimacy, the yearning of the blues, the mythological stories of country, and a bracing dose of arena-ready classic hard rock. 

“I was raised by my dad and my grandma. He loved 1980s rock, and my grandma loved classic country, like Hank Williams Jr; Waylon Jennings and Merle Haggard,” said Riley . “As soon as TJ opens his mouth you know we’re from the South.”

Previously, the band released its debut album, Can We Get A Witness, smack in the middle of the pandemic. Despite not having the opportunity to tour, the album amassed over 6 million streams across digital platforms, and earned critical acclaim from No Depression, Rolling Stone, Classic Rock, American Songwriter, Loudwire, Paste Magazine, and many others.

Raring out of lockdown, the guys made up for lost time, performing alongside a who’s who of rock icons. Select live performance highlights include sharing stages with Black Stone Cherry, Deep Purple, The Marshall Tucker Band, the Allman Betts Band, Blackberry Smoke, The Kentucky Headhunters, The Steel Woods and The Outlaws.

“We’ve learned a lot from our heroes. Playing with these bands made us better musicians,” Lyle said. “Also, seeing the world opens up your perspective as a songwriter—you encounter people from all walks of life.”

However, the most transformative experience for the band has been the month back in 2022, The Georgia Thunderbolts spent touring Europe with Black Stone Cherry. None of them had been across the pond before, and it was the longest they had been away from home.

Playing historical European theatres and seeing first hand how their music translated overseas was eye opening. “Hearing people sing our songs back to us felt like we were in The Twilight Zone. We never thought this was possible – It’s a long way from getting beer bottles thrown at us,” Lyle laughed. All the growth and maturation over the past two and half years should be heard on Rise Above It All. The 13-song collection is a flag-planting album, setting the stage for an exciting new chapter as The Georgia Thunderbolts continue to rise and resonate with audiences worldwide.

For more information on the band, their tour dates, and updates on the upcoming album, visit The Georgia Thunderbolts’ website.

Paul H Birch
Paul H Birch
RAMzine Senior Writer - Writer of fiction, faction and fact, has edited several newsstand magazines. He declares himself a hack for hire but refuses to compromise on the subject of music.

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