What is it about renovated buildings that I love? Is it the mix of history with the present? Or the way four walls can house so much more than original intentions? The Tabernacle is a renovated church turned into one of Atlanta’s most popular music venue. The brick exterior is an unassuming edifice that could easily be overlooked by first timers. The magic begins when you walk through the doors. The walls are covered with colorful bohemian designs that can capture the imagination.
There is standing room on the first level by the stage and balcony sitting for the old foggies like myself who prefer not to be in the marsh pit on a weeknight. The balcony has comfortable seats, though the rows are squeezed tightly together. Built-in cup holders in the back of the seats make it a comfortable experience for those who choose to sit it down. However, standing by the stage and dancing to the music is the quintessential experience of concertgoers.
The Tabernacle offers you options, something most venues do not. For someone like me, it’s great because if I see a concert on a weeknight I can opt for my own personal space up in the balcony or on a weekend to stand up front by the stage.
When I went to see the Arctic Monkeys at the Tabernacle, I sat up in the balcony since it was a Tuesday evening. The aerial view of the architecture from my seat still hinted at the building’s past. It was the former Luckie Street Church that became The House of Blues during 1996 Olympics. Eventually, ownership changed hands to Concert Southern and it became known as the Tabernacle. It can hold 2,500 people maximum.
While the crowd to see the Arctic Monkeys nowhere neared the maximum level of how many people can fit into the Tabernacle, it was a great show with a good atmosphere for a Tuesday evening out on the town. The Arctic Monkeys, a British band made popular by their hit song “I Bet You Look Good On The Dance Floor”, wasn’t my favorite considering all the amazing bands I’ve seen in the past couple of weeks but was still fun.
The band formed in 2002 in Sheffield, England, and I was introduced to their music in college when I first heard “Fluorescent Adolescent”. The band’s vibe was hip and fun. Lead singer Alex Turner sported an Elvis hair-do to be envied by any impersonator. I wasn’t personally acquainted with a lot of their music, but like most bands, they played their biggest hits, all songs I knew.
The songs I knew of theirs had The Black Keys vibe, but they had a lot of songs with a more edgy hard rock undertone. Their indie rock sound is nothing new to the stage, but they are another good listen if you never have heard of them before.