Monday, March 19, 2012

Treasure at the taco bar, SXSW Day 2

Continuing on with the Townie's Unofficial SXSW Day Party Journals, Day 2. There will be 2 more installments after this one, so hang in there!! On Thursday AM we went up to Stubb's. Mainly, I wanted to see The Punch Brothers again, and preferred this 10AM party to the earlier one staged by the radio morning show.

Highlights from Stubb's:
Alpha Rev, good local indie band that was already an old favorite, played first, and we enjoyed the cool temperatures and good sound from the stage.

Kopecky Family Band was a nice discovery. Not sure how we've managed to miss them so many times before.

I got a kick out of the superfan next to us for Lucero. So stoked!! And he loudly told the bandleader before the show started that, other than Springsteen, he was the greatest songwriter of our generation! That's some big love. I do understand it... I really do.

Alabama Shakes was the headliner at this party, and the radio gal on the announcement mic made what I thought was a rude faux pas. With the Punch Brothers standing on the stage ready to start, all she can come up with initially was something like "Bet you all can't wait for Alabama Shakes! We're all here for that, right?" The crowd attempted to correct and convince her that many of us were here for these guys!

Punch BrothersThe band was great, and we got some video, but the sound on that stage was no longer something that would show them off, it was hard to hear, especially the vocals. Instead of our video, here's one created the following day by radio KFUV a day later.

Actually, we did stick around for Alabama Shakes, because there is a HUGE buzz for this band right now... magazine covers, an Austin City Limits taping (look for it this Fall), critics choice lists... Their set also suffered from muffled, bad sound, and although I thought they were really pretty good, they did NOT knock my socks off.

Alabama Shakes

By then I was hot and tired, but the long walk to the bus stop is always entertaining on 6th street during the festival. These people are not really naked. They are wearing skin-tight flesh-colored leotards for some promotional purpose.

We went down to South Congress to Guero's Taco Bar courtyard, where we saw 2 really good bands. I really want to recommend The Belle Brigade. It's fronted by a brother and sister who have sweet harmonies and great songwriting skills. Their harmonies reminded me of The Indigo Girls, but they claim influence from Paul Simon and Fleetwood Mac. Good stuff, anyway. Children were romping wildly, dancing and playing in the mulch in front of the stage, we were sitting in the dirt in the shade of a tent, there was a light breeze and the music was so good.

The Belle Brigade (LA)

The band after them, Ivan and Alyosha (Seattle), was so good that I bought both their CDs!

We decided to call it a day at that point, and remember it all as a good time. I will leave you with the image of this pair of busking cuties on South Congress. Ticket money spent today = $0.


Debra She Who Seeks said...

Love the big Canadian flag on 6th street! Do you know why it was there?

Blueberry said...

A Canadian music organization HQ in town for the festival. We saw several artists who were Canadian. Dan Mangan (Day 3) was one.