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Macha

See It Another Way

(Jetset)

The true test of a great musical town is if it can sustain high level creative output through all the fads that come and go through mainstream culture and if it can generate enough internal inspiration to foster a variety of sounds. Athens, Georgia is no Johnny-come-lately to popular consciousness (remember R.E.M.), but lately the Elephant Six pop scene has largely colored our image of Athens as a pseudo-hippie town that the ‘60s never quite left behind.


Enter Macha, a quartet formed in 1996, who ingeniously combine the great pop sensibility that seems to grow on trees in their town with electronica and Indonesian gamelan music. Macha’s sound is not the result of mere studio wizardry and synthesizer noodlings. Real-life zithers, dulcimers, vibraphones, and Indonesian gongs drive the hypnotic tunes with the able underpinning of guitar, bass, and drums. The result is an exotic, transcendental mixture of melodic drone and trance that soars worlds beyond the pastoral Georgia countryside.

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Sarah Zupko founded PopMatters, one of the largest independent cultural criticism magazines on the web, back in the Internet's early days of 1999. Zupko is a former Executive Producer for Tribune Media Services, the media syndication arm of the Tribune Company, and a 10-year veteran of Tribune. Her other pursuits involve writing historical fiction and research in the fields of Slavic and German history, as well as general European cultural and intellectual history. Zupko studied musicology, film, and drama at the University of Chicago and media theory at the University of Texas, where she received her M.A.


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