Filed under: Austin, entertainment, events, lifestyle, music | Tags: antone's austin, BRAHMS, built by snow, citizen cope, crystal antlers, frightened rabbit, holy fuck, levi's fader fort, live music, local natives, minus the bear, mohawk austin, music festivals, still life still, sxsw 2010, the rural alberta advantage, the white white lights, think about life, we were promised jetpacks
I was going to write about the garden again. I spent time in it yesterday, I took bunches of photos. But I just can’t bring myself to talk about broccoli or radishes or tomatoes right now. Because the most glorious SXSW 2010 was one week ago today. And right now I need nothing more than to sit, reflect, and piece together 5 days of fantastic music and memories.
Day 1 – Wednesay, March 17
BRAHMS – Levi’s Fader Fort
Okay, so I didn’t accomplish a whole lot on Day 1 of SXSW. We stood in line for an hour at lunchtime to pick up our wristbands for Fader Fort. I went back to the office for a bit and then reemerged on the scene around 5pm at Red7 where I ran into a few friends, made some new ones, and saw The Rural Alberta Advantage. They were alright. The girl was cute. Paying $5 for Lone Star sucked. My more immediate concern was meeting up with friends across the street, which I did after the band finished their set.
We went to Bull McCabe’s and made an album cover. And asses of ourselves, I’m sure. After this point, the night begins to blur a bit. We left Bull McCabe’s for Fader Fort. It was my first SXSW with a Fader Fort wristband and it won’t be my last. Once inside the compound the alcohol was freely flowing (like, $0 for as many drinks as you could carry), BRAHMS was jamming on the stage at the western most end of the complex and the photo booths were endlessly entertaining. From there it was on to Shangri-La, where we ate tamales out of a cooler offered by a sketchy looking gentleman. Somewhere between Fader Fort and Shangri-La a tall British gentleman complimented me on my houndstooth shirt & picked me up and swung me around in the air for a bit. All in all, a successful start to the weekend.
Day 2 – Thursday, March 18th
Local Natives – Levi’s Fader Fort
Bomba Estereo – Levi’s Fader Fort
First Aid Kit – Mohawk
Salem – Mohawk
That list looks awfully slim for the amount of awesomeness that we fit into our Thursday schedule. I worked a half day at the office, came home and ran a few miles (in anticipation of the havoc that was about to occupy my life for the following 4 days). My new fun friend Kyle got in from Houston around 3, and we scurried downtown for more fun line-sitting. In total we probably spent an hour and a half waiting in lines till we got into Fader Fort. We made up for the wait by double-fisting two rounds of beers while listening to the crazy woman lead singer for Bombo Estero. That girl could wail. We may have watched another set there too but I can’t remember… pounding two rounds of two drinks each will modify a person’s memory in fairly short order.
With beer in our bellies and smiles on our faces we headed towards town in the direction of Mohawk, where my friends were camped out between day parties & the night shows. My friend Hollie (see mafia picture above) had made friends with the Black Keys, the band who had played the last set at Mohawk that afternoon. Hollie’s connections are regularly getting us privileges fit for super-cool kids. It’s always fun to saunter up to the back of a mile long line for the front door, then receive a phone call from someone inside and get quickly ushered in through the back door. Which is precisely what happened for Kyle & I that afternoon. Once inside we milled about with handful of other super-cool kids (band members n groupies n what not). We patiently waited. And waited. At long last the sun fell and the music started up again. We made it through First Aid Kit, which was no small miracle. About halfway through the set friends Otis & Kim sent a full beer directly into Kyle’s face and for a minute I thought his eyes were going to dissolve right out of his sockets. The girls in First Aid Kit were Swedish, and they were okay. But then Salem took the stage. The show was awful. Barely tolerable. We all fought the irresistible urge to slit our wrists or jump off the balcony. Thankfully Hollie, in all of her awesomeness, had ordered up some pizza to be delivered to us at the bar. So we stuffed our faces and concentrated on drinking, eating & blocking the dreadful grunge/rap/drone from our ears.
Day 3 – Friday, March 19th
Still Life Still – Mohawk
We Were Promised Jetpacks – Mohawk
Citizen Cope – Antone’s
Minus the Bear – Antone’s
Frightened Rabbit – Mohawk
Friday was awesome. We started the morning with a trip to Arkie’s Grill (mmmmmm paaaaancakes…). Then off to downtown for an afternoon of amazing show after amazing show. We started towards Mohawk & walked ourselves right into the Onion party upstairs: free Brooklyn Lager & Batter Blaster pancakes. YAY. We Were Promised Jetpacks rocked our socks off. The band before them, Still Life Still, was pretty great also. It was starting out to be a pretty good day.
At Antone’s we were up close & personal for the Citizen Cope show, and then Minus the Bear. Minus the Bear was awesome. They really were. I know there are some Antone’s haters out there, but I actually really love the place. Kyle’s main objective for his SX experience was to see MtB. It was good to check this show off the list.
We hustled back to Mohawk for Frightened Rabbit. The Brooklyn Lager keg was kicked but the Batter Blasters were still flying off the griddle left & right. It’s really bizarre to be at a show and see a bunch of people standing around eating pancakes with their fingers, by the way. Frightened Rabbit sounded great. Just like the LP. I was happy.
We briefly saw the friend group at Sidebar before leaving to meet up with Kyle’s friends at Buenos Aires cafe, where I proceeded to drink too much red wine and enjoyed chatting it up with Kevin the friendly waiter again. Kevin’s always a lot of fun, but he seemed pretty stressed out because of SXSW weekend. My vegetarian crepes were the most delicious thing on the face of this earth – highly recommend them to anyone planning a trip to Buenos Aires Cafe. From the Cafe we journeyed over to Rio Rita, where the girls got Bloody Marys and I got even closer to porcelain god worship. Another truly awesome night.
Day 4 – Saturday, March 20
Crystal Antlers – Galaxy Room
Think About Life – Galaxy Room
Duchess Says – Galaxy Room
Holy Fuck – Galaxy Room
I’m having a hard time remembering Saturday. Many, many braincells had been killed by this point. I know it started with breakfast tacos at Taco Deli. And then a tour of the office for Kyle. And then…? I guess we went downtown. And we saw the awesome shows listed above. And then I think we went to Uncorked for a few glasses of wine. And then Koriente for yummy japanese. And then we met Kim & Sara at Bull McCabe’s? And then we went to some random place to watch the K State game. YES! This is what happened on Saturday, I’m sure of it.
My take-away from Saturday was that Holy Fuck is… holy fuck, awesome. I danced, danced, danced. Think About Life was a super-fun, new, unique, interesting band too. I enjoyed their show a whole ton. What I really loved about both shows was the variety of people in the audience. I swear I saw a farmer my dad’s age leaning against the stage & bobbing his head during Holy Fuck’s set. And at Think About Life, there were folks from all walks of life, all ages, etc. It seemed an appropriate mirror to the unique composition of the band itself.
Day 5 – Sunday, March 21
Built by Snow – Six Stages Over Texas
The White White Lights – Six Stages Over Texas
At this point, I was just happy to still be alive. There weren’t any set plans for music on Sunday. We started with the legendary Juan in a Million for breakfast. Then a tour of Town Lake Park. Then a tour of West Austin (to show Kyle that not all of Austin is gritty like East Austin or 6th Street). And then,“hey, I have those tickets for the show up near UT…. ahhh, what the heck. Let’s go.” Free Lone Star. And Kyle got some sweet gear from Cream Vintage, which the venue backed up to. I discovered that I have a severe girl crush on the lead singer of The White White Lights. The guitarists sunglasses went flying off of his head multiple times. They did Toadies covers? But also their own stuff, that ranged from super sweet to death metal. It was pretty awesome.
And that concludes my recap. It was a long post. There was a lot to cover, and probably lots that I missed. Like the mysterious bruises I found on Monday, and the glass of wine I shattered on Thursday and how Wii Fit continues to be a source of sheer joy after a day of drinking. But those are all small beans compared to the crazy awesome shows we saw & some of the bigger pieces of the puzzle that I summarized here. This alone has already taken me 2 hours to write. It’s too beautiful of a day to waste time collecting & sharing all of the little bean stories.
Did anyone else see some crazy fun stuff that I should’ve seen? Or go to any awesome venues/day parties that need to be added to the list for next year’s SXSW? Please share. If I can fit any more awesome to next year’s SX experience, I’ll be amazed and out-of-my-mind happy. I challenge you to help me achieve this lofty goal.
Filed under: events, entertainment, music, Austin | Tags: SXSW 2009, austin music festivals, N.A.S.A., Datarock, Wallpaper, bay area take-over party, filter party, cedar street courtyard, flosstradamus, white lies, ra-ra-riot, lisa hannigan, cold war kids, SXSW 2009 video
It was a great weekend to be in Austin. Temps were in the low 80′s during the day and high 60′s at night. The sun was out, the sky was clear, there were people from all over the world strolling the streets and the downtown was alive with music.
2009 was my first real attempt to “do” SXSW. I studied the party lists, RSVP’ed to every event possible, studied up on bands I wanted to see and in general went out of my way to take advantage of the fact that 1,800 bands were converging in this town for 4 short days of intense shows. On Thursday I saw Themselves & Wallpaper at the Beauty Bar, followed by the Cold War Kids at Auditorium Shores. Friday started at lunchtime, where Lisa Hannigan was playing a show at B.D. Riley’s (thanks to Beth for introducing me to her music!). After work I went to Radio Room to see Ra-Ra-Riot, and then headed down to Cedar Street to catch some of the White Lies show. Saturday I rode my motorcycle downtown to catch two afternoon shows: Flosstradamus & N.A.S.A. at the Filter Party. Saturday evening we said goodbye to SXSW with a major dance-off at the hip new club at 2nd & Lavaca – Malverde. The Norwegian band Datarock came out to spin a DJ set for a few hours following their preformance with Devo & Tricky at Austin Music Hall. It was pretty amazing… the event was way under-advertised and I don’t think many people realized who was spinning for them.
My favorite shows from the weekend were Wallpaper & Ra-Ra-Riot. I had a blast at the Datarock show, but the experience was marred when I slipped on the dancefloor and cracked my head. Not their fault, I know. But I still blame their amazing spinning skillz.
The N.A.S.A show was one of the more ridiculous performances (besides the Wallpaper show, which I posted about previously). I’ll leave you with a few images and video clips from the weekend… and my apologies for the poor video quality.
Filed under: Austin, entertainment, events, music | Tags: Bay area take-over 2009, Beauty Bar, SXSW 2009, Wallpaper
Just had to share this tonight – I had a blast at the Beauty Bar for the Bay Area Take-over party, and I completely enjoyed Wallpaper’s set… a panda bear on the drums? Brilliant. Just brilliant. I saw this man shed 3 layers in the course of an hour – 1 surf-ready oil-sheen jacket, 1 white sequins sport coat, followed by one black sequins sport coat that revealed a gold sequins vest. Spectacular.
Because this is just a teaser – I urge you to visit this, the best music video ever: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=F8iSm5ybipI.
Love these guys!!!
Filed under: Austin, entertainment, events, music | Tags: Austin music, austin music festivals, Black Gold, champagne champagne, Datarock, do it to it 2009 rsvp, N.A.S.A., Passion Pit, pure volume party, sxseattle party, SXSW 2009, SXSW RSVPs, sxsw shows, the bay area takeover party, the lose control party
SXSW is coming to Austin soon, and once again I find myself both excited and befuddled by the event.
ACL is so much easier. Buy one ticket for the day or buy one ticket for the whole weekend. Go to one location, see music.
Maybe the weirdness is what makes SX a true Austin experience.
Here is my conundrum: with a purchased wristband, a person can get in to see any number of shows at any number of venues. Without a wristband, a person can still get in to see shows. So here’s where the mystery begins: without a wristband you risk not being able to get into a show (wristbands get first priority). In some cases, you need to RSVP to the shows to even be considered for entry without a wristband. Some shows don’t need RSVP’s. But some shows do. How do you know which ones will need RSVP’s and which ones won’t? Darn if I know. So my theory this year has been to RSVP for every known show and party.
Current RSVP’s (and links to get there):
Do It To It 2009:
The Bay Area Takeover:
The Lose Control Party:
I’ve got a list of bands I’d really really really like to see. I’m not sure if I’m going to get to see them (see above wristband/RSVP system confusion). Obviously, I need more practice at this SXthing. If I get my every music wish, I’ll get to check out:
Champagne, Champagne @ Red Eyed Fly (Wednesday 03/18 @ 8:00)
N.A.S.A. @ Emo’s Annex (Thursday 03/19 @ 10:00)
Passion Pit @ Emo’s Main Room (Thurdsay, 03/19 @ 12:00)
Datarock @ Emo’s Annex (Thursday, 03/19 @ 1:00) <— this is obviously going to make for a rough Friday morning…
Black Gold @ Prague (Saturday, 03/21 @ 9:00)
Anyone know of any other RSVP’s I’m missing? Please tell me. I’m clueless over here…
Filed under: gadgets, lifestyle, music | Tags: found electronics, found ipod, ipod, ipod mini, lost & found, lost ipod, pink ipod mini
My Ipod Mini resurfaced today!!!
“Skinny Mini” had been gone for so long that I can’t even remember when I lost her. I’m pretty sure it happened last October, when I went home to Pennsylvania for Kimmi & Drew’s wedding. Though I could never place the exact time when she went missing, I was fairly certain that some punk kid in the airport had swiped her from me. As far as I was concerned, Skinny Mini was gone forever.
Then today, a miracle happened! I was out at Auditorium Shores doing some site reconnaissance for an upcoming project we’re working on, when I reached into a side pocket of my dorky, ill-used ASLA laptop bag for my camera. And lo and behold, there was my pink ipod mini. I’d looked through that bag countless numbers of times since it went missing, and I have no idea how I’d overlooked it each time.
This couldn’t have come at a better time – my roommate and I are throwing a big party next weekend (ps, you’re all invited). All week I’d considered throwing down some money for a new Ipod so that I could have portable tunes for the weekend. And now, thanks to my random decision to carry that bag this morning, I’ll have portable music without buying any new electronics. Brilliant!