Firecracker 500 Fest rolls on with Memphis rockers Ex-Cult

Ex-Cult perform at Gonerfest
Ex-Cult perform at Goner Fest 2013. — photo by Michael Smith

Ex-Cult w/ Good Habits, Mexican Knives, The Lupines

The Mill — Friday, May 30 at 8 p.m.

Memphis punk rockers Ex-Cult are set to headline a full lineup at The Mill tonight as part of the Firecracker 500 Festival. Joined by Iowa City’s Good Habits, Detroit’s Mexican Knives and Omaha’s The Lupines, Ex-Cult will be closing out a night filled with the kind of aggressive, post-punk thrashing they have become known for in their short history. If you can make it to only one night of the Firecracker 500 Festival, this is definitely the one to see.

Formed in 2011, Ex-Cult quickly gained notoriety around the Memphis and Nashville punk scenes, both for their energetic live shows and their seamless blend of cross-generational punk music — be it the psychedelic vibe of the ’60s, the art-rock tendencies of the ’70s or the aggressive, in-your-face attitude of the ’80s. Lyrically, they’ve got a bit of a dark streak, with bleak lines like “No one’s ever gonna get your mood / but that’s not why they hate you” paired well with their streamlined and nervy style.

After honing their sound in San Francisco with the garage-rock luminary Ty Segall, Ex-Cult set out on the road in support of numerous releases, most recently 2014’s Midnight Passenger. The album received a solid review from Pitchfork writer Evan Minsker, who hailed many of the songs as “psychedelia-steeped victories.” With a sound that seems to be continually opening up to newer, bigger possibilities, Ex-Cult are well on their way to firmly establishing themselves as one of the premier touring punk groups of the day.

Watch Ex-Cult perform live:

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