Okay, I was at SXSW this year again and that’s the only thing I’m really thankful for this go around. Yes, I saw some great bands. Yes, I wore my feet out walking all over the place. And, considering what happened in front the Mohawk, I seriously survived. Continue reading SXSW 2014: Surviving Another Guantlet
Last week I popped back over to the Mohawk to get my rocks off and boy did I ever. Sure, it wasn’t a face rocking time but the boys from Bass Drum of Death rocked enough of me to make it worth it. The opening guys fared well, too, with DZ Deathrays giving me the most follow up interest for after the show. No rain this time at the Mohawk but it didn’t matter because I was indoors. Continue reading Bass Drum Of Death Kicked Well
This chocolate covered bacon I just ate is starting to be all acid refluxy. Looks like it’s time to wrap up the SXSW music experience! I’m sitting here in the hotel chilling out saving up juice for the long drive back tomorrow. The bacon treat came courtesy of a specialty candy shop down on South Congress in Austin. Much like the sweet release of flavor both the chocolate and bacon provides my taste buds, the SXSW Music Showcase provided the sweet release of sounds to my ears. Here’s my highlights of the whole shebang:
- Mariachi El Bronx really kicked off the tunes even though I saw them at the Interactive closing party. The happy bounce I had in the chair came from when I discovered that they were, in fact, The Bronx and they decided to take the Mariachi route from their hard rock road.
- Sharon Jones and Dap kings stole the NPR opening night showcase. Look, Spoon’s great and Austin local, but the party music and soul motions Jones and company brought to the stage eclipsed everyone else’s performances.
- Muse delivered. I have yet to see them and now I can say that the live show is worth every penny. They do so much more on stage than just play their songs. I’m now even more of a fan of Muse than what I was before they hit the stage.
- Street Sweeper Social Club rocked harder than anyone else out here. Even more so than F@#$ed Up. Maybe it was the funk tones or the fact I got to see Tom Morrello work his magic. It doesn’t matter. The show was the only one I was at where the crowd actually all jumped up and down.
- Miike Snow impressed me and the whole crowd. They fused together clear tones of electronic bleeps and bloops with some distorted guitar jams to create a sound that touched everyone at the Mohawk. You know what? Wave Machines did that too.
- Ray Davies can still kick you in the face with his music. The Kinks patriarch played about 2/3 of his show as you would expect from an old rock. He was all acoustic and reminiscent. Then all of the sudden, The 88 came out and they all brought the house down with some Kinks classics and new tunes.
- Gordon Gano can play the violin. I didn’t know he could but he showed off his pluckiness with the wooden instrument with the Ryan Brothers. He totally dipped into the Violent Femmes well so it was a guaranteed win of a show.
That’s all I can remember off the top of my head. There were so many high points, it’s hard to remember them all. Well that and the bacon is starting to hit. I’m sure in the ebb and flow of recovery this week I’ll figure it out.
I’m sitting here in the Clarion Inn at about 3:30 in the morning Saturday and I’m wondering if it can get any better than this. No, I’m not talking about Old Milwaukee, I’m talking about this Music conference and the events leading up me typing this in my underwear. Sure, my feet are super sore, they have been after every night, but each day passes and my mind continualy is blown up by what we’re doing down here. Today’s music consisted of a smorgusboard of variety and some pay off from very well known to virtually unknown artists. Let’s take a look:
- First up was the Fangs and they bite pretty well in the Euro synth punk genre. The lead singer lady is all sultry and punky while the rest of the band rocks it out eurocore. Oh it’s catch and popppy, but has a slight edge.
- After a couple of detours, I actaully ran into And So I Watch You From Afar playing again. Me and my lovely girlfriend stayed and watched these guys play again. Go see them if they are in your town.
- We heard rumor during the week that a major band would be playing at SXSW this week and we got in line at Stubb’s to check them out. First of was Metric and what I thought was a Swedish smart rock band ended up being a New York rock and roll with synth Blondie send up. The lead singer lady again had some great energy on the stage.
- Next up was Muse. They were the big rumor and Spin brought these guys here for a great show. I’ve yet to see them live and now I will if they ever come around Kansas City. Everyone knows who Muse is, or at least should, but what hit the home run for me was the Ennio Morricone cover of the them to Once Upon A Time in The West that they started out with in the encore and ran into Knights of Cydona. Truly a site to see.
- We piled out of there and ran back to the Mohawk to see some tunes. We watched the Cool Kids rap and it was a great palette cleanser. Good ole fashioned hip hop with some spliff references.
- Next up at Mohawk was Miike Snow. Again I thought this was Swedish smart techno but again I was proved wrong when the went alot harder than I expected. This guys had the crowd at their fingertips by the time we left for our last show.
- The last stop of the night pinned the tail on our ecclectic donkey of music. Dengue Fever is a world music band featuring a Cambodian singer and hails for LA. If you enjoy some rousing world music, check these guys out. They had us bouncing around the room. You know at first I thought the singer was a Bollywood type diva but I guess Cambodian divas sound alot like those. Good fun at the end.