NPR shows at SXSW scare me because of the long lines that scatter up and down 6th St. Lucky for you, IFC was on hand to capture the literary magic that is The Decemberists. The Oregonians are on tour as well in support of their latest album, The Hazards of Love.
THE DECEMBERISTS ON TOUR
May 19 – Hollywood Palladium – Los Angeles, CA
May 20 – Fox Theatre – Oakland, CA
May 21 – McDonald Theater – Eugene, OR
May 24 – Wilma Theatre – Missoula, MT May 26 – Fillmore Auditorium – Denver, CO
May 27 – Uptown Theater – Kansas City, MO
May 29 – Riverside Theater – Milwaukee, WI
May 31 – The Pageant – St. Louis, MO
June 1 – Lifestyle Communities Pavilion – Columbus, OH
June 3 – Tabernacle – Atlanta, GA
June 4 – Memorial Auditorium – Raleigh, NC
June 5 – The National – Richmond, VA
June 6 – Tower Theatre – Upper Darby, PA
June 9 – Bank of America Pavillion – Boston, MA
June 10 – Radio City Music Hall – New York, NY
June 11-14 – Bonnaroo Music & Arts Festival – Manchester, TN
July 18 – Edgefield – Troutdale, OR w/ Andrew Bird
July 19 – Edgefield – Troutdale, OR w/ Andrew Bird
Upon first listen of Little Boots, I became instantly smitten by her sounds and demeanor. I watched her video of Stuck on Repeat in my small office cubicle over a dozen times. Her smashing performance the first night of SXSW was a resounding success , culminated with a Giorgio Moroder cover that would eventually set the crowd ablaze.
It was one of those moments where you walk into a venue and you already can feel a good vibe being put on a by an unknown band. I rushed the stage with wreckless abandon to find the stage filled with three girls that looked like the escaped the island from Lord of the Flies. Their music dictated otherwise, where 21 year old music whiz, Micachu layed down here grimy tribal beats for everybody to see, and what a sight it was to see.
The newest crowned jewel to join the A&C family played an early Onion Party their Jet Black album that has the makings of beautiful pop record that the record company is known for putting out. The addictive album has the elements of what makes Star so brilliant, the unapologetic pop hooks, intuitive songwriting, and addictive earworms for songs. In even better news, the group will be coming around the bend on tour this Spring.
I don’t make this comparison, often, that is, but you take the beauty of Sigur Ros and combine it with the chamber elements of Arcade Fire and the final result is Danish supergroup, Efterklang. They played Larimer Lounge the Saturday before SXSW, and the group was completely off of my radar. The group was the biggest surprise for me during SXSW and look forward to any new material from the Danish crew.
Folkie Alela Diane knows how to create a heartfelt story with her soft words and kind guitar. It had been a while since I had witnessed a female singer/songwriter impact me the way she did, from the way she mouths her every word, to her gentle handling of her acoustic guitar. Her recognition is best known overseas, but here’s to hoping she catches on here in her native land.
Whenever I listen to this Scottish band, a smile magically appears on my face and all the sad days go away. You add that to the magical setting that is the French Legation, and this utopia appears on a hill east of I-35. Away from the mess that is 6th and emerald hills of lush grass decorated with white tents, blue and pink outhouses, and lounging people enjoying themselves not worrying about what show was awaiting around the next corner. I love the group for the same reason I love the Raveonettes. It’s quite simple, both groups have a mastered grasp oon 60’s cool that isn’t easy to come by nor replicated by many.
This group comes in second for the amount of shows played during SXSW, the first being the Vivian Girls. Despite the frequency of shows during the week, I didn’t catch them, but I didn’t despair because they’ll be here soon. Despite the janky operation that was being run here, the group persevered playing to a much eager crowd waiting to here the P4K darlings perform songs from their S/T album. The album is stuck in a timewarp from the mid-80’s when AIDS was a myth and people were still drinking Tab. The music spoke for itself and the group almost made La Condesna collapse with their magnetic sound.
Call me selfish or spoiled, but I loved the performance from the band, but the fact that it was played at 2:15 in the PM (that’s Post Meridiem) outside made me a bit grumpy. The group nailed their performance. The energy created by the duo is remarkable and I’ve always said this, but will reiterate for those that don’t know where I stand, here you go: Handsome Furs > Wolf Parade > Sunset Rubdown > Swan Lake. In that order.
Brooklyn weird kids brought their bag of tricks to GvB’s SXSW day party, and based on their album, I had no idea what to expect. Well, maybe a little. I was expecting a rambunctious lot from emerald fields. What I got instead was a talented group of kids that lived up to my hopes of being a group of talented individuals bringing new life to the scene. Their S/T album is magical if you have a chance to sit down and give it a full listen.