Home / Tag: SXSW
03.21.2009 | | Posted at 12:00 AM
By Evan Rytlewski
Last year's SXSW was dominated by a handful of burgeoning bands with major next-big-thing potential. Vampire Weekend, MGMT and Bon Iver were all already well on their way toward bigger things when they played Austin last March, but SXSW was in many ways the tipping point, the moment media cemented the narrative that these were to be the great success stories of 2008. No burgeoning acts as Sout...
03.21.2009 | | Posted at 12:00 AM
By Evan Rytlewski
In that awkward early evening downtime between the SXSW day parties and the nighttime showcases, I might have seen Third Eye Blind yesterday evening. They might have played "Jumper," and I might have really enjoyed it. That's what getting old is all about: Enjoying things you used to hate, mostly because they're familiar. The same bizarre chemistry that somehow made the Gin Blossoms one of my favorite bands has also endeared me to the band whose late-'90s rise effectively signaled the end of the decade's long alternative-rock boom. In truth, Third Eye Blind wasn't nearly as awful as I remember them. By the standards of today's humorless modern-rock radio, they seem like Nirvana. And for a band with adult-contemporary leanings, they sure did scream a lot. I miss that. In the latest sing of their resurgence, an overflowing crowd of non-SXSW ticket holders swarmed Austin's convention center just to see the group, and singer Stephen Jenkins, looking 10 years older than you remember him (since it's been 10 years since you last saw him), seemed genuinely thankful for the interest. The group has a new album on the way, and unlike their last couple of new albums, this one could be an actual hit (or a hit by today's reduced standards), given how their latest single, "Non-Dairy Creamer," has infiltrated radio. Like the group's vintage single, the track

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03.20.2009 | | Posted at 12:00 AM
By Evan Rytlewski
Twenty years after being ground zero for the Seattle grunge explosion, Sub Pop Records has settled smoothly into its somewhat unlikely new niche: folk. The label now flaunts a quiet roster of Iron and Wine, Lonely Dear, Vetiver, Daniel Martin Moore and Fleet Foxes, but apparently it hasn�t forgotten its roots. Why else would it sign No Age, a two-man, guitar-drum rock duo that channels the louder side of George H.W. Bush-era underground rock? No Age roared through a bold but crude 20-minute set last night to kick off Sub Pop�s SXSW showcase, their guitarist nodding to a certain seminal Sub Pop act not only with noise but also his flannel shirt

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03.15.2010 | | Posted at 06:00 PM
By Evan Rytlewski
"This is my third show today," a visibly exhausted Juiceboxxx announced before his nighttime performance at the showcase for IHEARTCOMIX, a loose collective of performers with a shared enthusiasm for (but very different ways of performing) party music. "I want to puke, I want to kill myself... my body hurts." While most of his IHEARTCOMIX peers keep their music willfully chipper, the mer...
03.20.2009 | | Posted at 12:00 AM
By Evan Rytlewski
�Kid Cudi is a no show,� a stagehand announced at exactly 1 a.m., the scheduled start time for Kid Cudi�s set. Within moments the houselights brightened and the crowd realized he wasn�t joking. Disillusioned and grumbling, they made a mass exodus toward the exit. The first revelers had just left when none other but Kid Cudi walked in through the venue�s front door in brisk stride, waving the crowd back toward the stage. It was like a scene from a movie; the rapper�s fashionably late entrance couldn�t have been better timed. �Sorry I�m late,� Cudi apologized as he hopped over a bar and onto the stage, his DJ racing to set up his equipment. �I had a Peter Parker Spider Man 2 moment. You know how Spider Man didn�t want to be Spider Man no more? I was feeling that way.� It was an odd explanation for being four minutes tardy if there ever was one. It�s going to be a long, miserable life for the laid-back rapper if he�s already questioning a career in music

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03.20.2009 | | Posted at 12:00 AM
By Evan Rytlewski
There�s a lot of room for accidents in Terrior Bute�s sound. For the Milwaukee group�s outdoor performance in front of a vegan-friendly greasy spoon in Austin yesterday, their spastic synth-pop was accented by static, feedback and loud, uncontrollable pops from their equipment's questionable electrical connections, as well as the sharp thumps the microphone made whenever their singer slung the microphone over his shoulder to play his keyboard with both hands. The most disconcerting sound of the set, though, was the loud, bassy grunt his synthesizer made when he wiped his blood off of it. Midway through the set, he had developed a pretty nasty nose bleed

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03.19.2009 | | Posted at 12:00 AM
By Evan Rytlewski
The crowd at Haley Bonar's acoustic performance this afternoon at the SXSW convention center watched the performer the same way they would an animal in a zoo, from a distance. Many chatted over her songs, like she was just another busker in a coffee shop, while the ones who were paying attention stared almost too intensely, jotting down notes in their pads or snapping photos of her. It m...
03.19.2009 | | Posted at 12:00 AM
By Evan Rytlewski
Eccentric actress Juliette Lewis is no long with her band the Licks, but she wasted no time forming a new project: the very Licks-like New Romantiques, which teased some forthcoming material last night as SXSW. The shtick is unchanged: Juliette cakes herself in glitter and flails around, flaunting her Karen O-like sexual ebullience. But where the Yeah Yeah Yeahs have evolved into one of rock’s mo...
12.31.1969 | | Posted at 06:00 PM
By Evan Rytlewski
The Circle Jerks were particularly generous last night, playing a 75-minute set that included a whooping 30 songs (it helps that theyre short). They looked as old as youd expect. Singer Keith Morris is probably a little bit too bald on top to be rocking dreadlocks, and his stage presence was probably sillier than he intended it to be, but he had some serious energy. Wild in the ...
03.19.2009 | | Posted at 12:00 AM
By Evan Rytlewski
R.E.M.�s much-hyped performance at SXSW last year felt more like a commercial than a concert. With few nods to their back catalogue, the band spent most of the set deluging the audience with material from their then-forthcoming record, Accelerate. If you wanted to hear �Fall on Me,� you had to sit through their time-share presentation first. Echo and the Bunnymen, the closest thing SXSW of...

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