14 Local Bands to Look Out For in 2016

 Illegal Drugs appeared on the Atlanta scene early this year with an EP entitled On Fire. Ten days later, they made their live debut at 529 on a show with The Liverhearts, Jaye Jayle (the alter-ego of Young Widows guitarist Evan Patterson), and NULL from Birmingham. The four-piece, comprising of members from Turf War, Hawks, and the Husseins, blew me away that night with their noisy rock n’ roll carnage. Since then, they’ve played with several national acts, including White Reaper, Coliseum, and Destruction Unit. I’ve seen them two or three times this year, and each time has easily been among my favorite live performances of the year. Their shorter, more furious garage-rock cuts are simply vicious, but it’s their longer, more mid-tempo tracks where they truly let their post-punk influence shine, harnessing the energy of a thousand slow headbangs. Look out for a new EP sometime next year. – Ben Braunstein