During 1993-1995, we played five concerts in Atlanta, and four of them were at The Masquerade, one of which was 21 years ago today. And yet this is the first time I’ve written about the place–that is not an accident. We never had a particularly good time there, due primarily to it being three venues in one multilevel building: Heaven, Purgatory, and Hell. Naturally, you could always find us in Heaven, but in case you were curious what was going on elsewhere, you needn’t go to another floor to find out, because the thumping disco from below was pretty much omnipresent. (Didn’t this bother everyone going to The Masquerade is the question I’ve always had, but having consulted the F.A.Q.’s on their web site, I’m forced to conclude maybe not.) What to do? We didn’t want to have to drop the quiet songs from the set, but they sounded ridiculous–we compromised by playing the impromptu club remix of, say, “Nowhere Near” and grumbling about it, letting a frown be our umbrella, as it were. When our first Atlanta date of 1996 took place at The Point during an ice storm, there was still no mistaking it for anything but a step in the right direction.