Sweatstock 2013: ANR, This Heart Electric, Testokra!
Photo by Alex Broadwell No one eats mics like This Heart Electric's Ricardo Guerrero.
Sweatstock is for lovers.
Lovers of independent music and record stores, yes. But also lovers of drunken groping before the sun has fully gone down. A good chunk of the attendees of Sweatstock 2030 were conceived indoors (and out) this weekend, spurred on by a hurricane season clothing-optional dress code, some pretty solid drink specials, and the romantic sounds of sweetly strident pop, beachfront garage rock, and atonal punk.
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Photo by Alex Broadwell
Shortly before ending the set, ANR singer Michael John Hancock reflected on how 2013 marks 10 years of ANR as a band. Special for Sweatstock, ANR performed as an expanded seven-piece that included two backing vocalists (who also played violin and percussion) and in absentia, Miami fixture Rainer Davies on guitar.
In spite of receiving national acclaim, the Lemon City stalwarts remain one of the most polite bands Miami has ever produced. Even when keyboardist Brian Robertson shouted to the crowd, "You guys fucking rock!," he immediately apologized, saying, "Sorry for the profanity." Hancock took care to compliment his fans, "You're a beautiful crowd and I'm happy to look at you all the time," and encourage Sweatstockers to visit the record store hosting the whole affair, calling Sweat "our local merch table...everyone's local merch table."
ANR have been keeping a low profile as of late, sticking mainly to two main performances as a part of their residency at the Broken Shaker in North Beach. But their Sweatstock show included several new songs that hint towards an imminent announcement of the followup to 2011's Stay Kids. Exciting stuff, only enhanced by the fact that these guys use a fog machine like bosses. They make Yes and Rush look like a bunch of cub scouts rubbing twigs together.