Sunday, March 22, 2015


Central Presbyterian Church, 1am


Central Presbyterian Church, 12am

Swirly, psychedelic electro-pop from Sweden. I didn't like this at all (I fell asleep!), but we were really here for the next act, Torres. 

Blacklist Royals

Soho Lounge, 11pm

Brit-style punk rock - from Tennessee!  Fun, but not my favorite music. 

Saturday, March 21, 2015

Springtime Carnivore

Central Presbyterian Church, 10:15pm

A very nice pop-rock band, in a very nice setting. 


Swan Dive, 9:30pm

Fun, quirky electronic-rock!

Sam Outlaw

We came here for the next band (Lowell) outside, but stopped to enjoy this nice country music inside. 


Empire Control Room, 8:30pm

I didn't think this would be popular (even though Verite has a great pop album on NoiseTrade), but it was crazy-packed. 

X Ambassadors

IFC Fairgrounds at Palm Park, 8pm

After missing them last night at Uproxx, we finally got to see them.  Except for some unnecessary swearing (this was a family venue) and the muddy fairgrounds, this was a great show. 

Cilantro Boombox

Mexican Arts Cultural Center, 7pm

The main act never showed up (or started VERY late or VERY early), but we got to enjoy the Academy Orchestra and Austin Samba perform:

Cantina Laredo

No, this isn't a band. This where we had dinner. The margaritas weren't quite as good as our previous favorite (Casa Chapala), but the food was *amazing*!  This is our new favorite Mexican restaurant in Austin!

Elliott Brood

Canada House (Toronto showcase) at Friends, 4:40pm

Another great set from one of our favorites. They aren't passing out the tin lids and wooden spoons (for audience participation/percussion), but it's still a great show!

Arrows of Love

British Music Embassy at Latitude 30, 3:45pm

We actually arrived during the previous band (Holy Esque) after a brief trip over to Friends. Last band was horrible!

Arrows of Love was described as "punk", but they had a pretty good rock melody. 

The People and the Poet

British Music Embassy (Yorkshire showcase) at Latitude 30, 2pm

First band at the Yorkshire showcase sounds like an American country band, not what I was expecting from Yorkshire. They were actually pretty good, once I got over my expectations. 

Twin Limb

Tumblr IRL at Ironwood, 1pm (ish)

They didn't let anyone in to this "1pm" show until 1:30, which started 15 minutes later. Not the usual SXSW promptness. 

Band looked interesting: one guy on guitar, one woman on a HUGE accordion, and one woman on drums. Both woman sang, usually together in harmony.  Musically, it was swirly, almost psychedelic, not really my thing.

Turns out, it was the "wrong" band!  We were these to see Houndmouth, but they had an opening band (Twin Limb) which we didn't know about.  Didn't see it posted anywhere.  We thought it was Houndmouth, though, and were surprised by what a let-down it was, and left during the 2nd song.  Really wish we had seen Houndmouth...

Buck 65

Mohawk (indoor), 1:15am

Dan Mangan

Maggie Mae's (downstairs), 12am

Not nearly as good as the previous time we saw Dan at SXSW, due to the heavy guitars and effects. 

Yes, this guy is actually playing his guitar with a violin bow:

Elliott Brood

Parish Underground, 11:30pm

After not getting into X Ambassadors and missing Olivver the Kid's shortened set, we caught the last song by this terrific trio. 

Friday, March 20, 2015

Yukon Blonde

Maggie Mae's (downstairs), 10pm

I've heard of this Vancouver-based rock band before, but I didn't really know their music. Not quite as good as some of their peers (Rah Rah, Fast Romantics, etc.), but they're a pretty tight band with a good sound. 

Kate Tempest

Maggie Mae's, 9:30pm

Caught the end of this show. Don't know anything about her, but it's a real fun, funky beat. 

Mise en Scene

Friends, 9:15pm

Popped in for a couple songs by this pretty good Canadian rock trio. 

The real highlight, though, was running into Marshall Burns, the frontman of Rah Rah. 

Avid Dancer

Parish, 9pm

I have an album of theirs (his?) from NoiseTrade and have been really impressed. He had a great retro/new-wave sound. Concert wasn't great, but his music is. 

Dylan Gardner

Driskill Hotel, 8pm

Dylan is a very young (18), very talented pop-rock singer. He really is amazing!

Royal Teeth

Swan Dive, 5pm (ish)

These guys were supposed to play at Swan Dive's outdoor stage, but that got rained out and all the bands crammed inside. 

They put on great shows at our last SXSW in 2013, and they did it again.


Hippo Campus

Holy Mountain, 4:15pm

This place used to be called The Beauty Bar. We've seen several concerts here in the past. 

Hippo Campus is young fun 4-piece playing pop-rock. 

Kristin Diable

Brass House, 3:30pm

We only caught the end of this since it started to pour out and we had to go back to the hotel and change. 

She's a country singer-songwriter, but I wasn't too impressed. 

Chadwick Stokes

Swan Dive, 2:30pm

I discovered this Boston-based artist on NoiseTrade. I never get out to see him in Boston, so I took advantage of this opportunity to see him down here in Austin. He just played his acoustic guitar, but really rocked it. Great show!

Go Wolf

British Music Embassy (Scottish Showcase) at Latitude 30, 2pm

Back again for the great UK hospitality (free food and drinks), and this was the opening band. Hadn't heard of them, but they had a fun electro-pop-rock sound. 

Ivy Levan

Palm Door on Sixth, 1:30pm

The last show was so bad I left early. Ed went to the Aussie BBQ, I opted to see Ivy again. 

Gang of Four

ACC Day Stage, 1pm

Famous for their new-wave hit "I Love a Man in a Uniform", I didn't really know much about these guys. Turns out the original band formed in 1977 and only one original member is left. I wasn't impressed. 


B. D. Riley's, 12:30pm

Caught the end of Soak's show at the "Irish Breakfast" party. Simple folk music, but a great voice from the young up-and-coming artist. 

Family and Friends

St. David's, 1am

Oh my god. Thought this would be mellow, but they rocked. 4 "guitars" (including the banjo), 2 drummers, and everyone singing the chorus. I'm at a loss for comparisons, maybe an amped-up Great Lake Swimmers or Family of the Year.  Outstanding. Must get the album 

Quiet Company

Red Eyed Fly, 12am

Hipster-looking 5-piece rock band. Too heavy without any melody for me. 

Parlour Tricks

Valhalla, 11pm

Fun pop-rock band from NYC. This 6-piece is fronted by 3 woman, singing, dancing, and even dressing in harmony. Very nice!

Thursday, March 19, 2015

Strung Like a Horse

Palm Door on Sabine, 10pm

Ed went off to see The Accidentals, since he didn't think he'd like this band. It was a tough choice for me, since The Accidentals sounded good too. But, the name of the band and their song on the SXSW website just make me laugh, so I had to see them!

Not sure I'd buy an album, but they sure we're fun to see!

Elle King

Yahoo's Brazos Hall, 9pm

Just heard this CD a week ago, thought it was great, so I was excited to see Elle at SXSW. This was a bit more country than I remembered, but it really rocked!

I don't know what this venue normally is, but Yahoo transformed it into a modern-looking dance club - very nice!


Maggie Mae's, 8pm

Kind of a sultry country-rock. Not bad, but not great. 

Matthew Mayfield

Chuggin' Monkey, 7pm

I've been a huge fan since I discovered Matthew on NoiseTrade. I even supported his PledgeMusic campaign. It was terrific to finally see him live!

Roddy Hart and the Lonesome Fire

British Music Embassy (Latitude 30), 5pm

Really came back for the free drinks (they make a pretty good margarita!), and caught the end of this band. 

Not bad, but not great. 

Zella Day

ACC Day Stage, 4pm

I was expecting a bit of a folky singer-songwriter, but this really rocked!

Paper Aeroplanes

British Music Embassy (Latitude 30), 3:30pm

Had a free EP from them (thru NoiseTrade), so was looking forward to this. As expected, they're very mellow, but the music is beautiful. Was surprised to see it was just a duo, two guitars, no bass, no drums. I think they had some loops/tracks playing too, which explains who they could get such layered music with only 2 musicians. 

Del Barber

Canada House (Manitoba Showcase) at Friends, 3pm

Del is an actual cowboy from Manitoba, and a fine singer too. 

The Wet Secrets

Canada House at Friends, 2:45

We caught the end of this band. Don't know much of their music, but they have a fun look and sound. 

Lyric Michelle

Pop Montreal at Maggie Mae's, 2:30pm

Stopped in because Maggie's usually equals free drinks. That was still true, thankfully, but the music/rap wasn't my style. 

Golden Fable

British Music Embassy (Latitude 30), 2pm

Came here for Paper Aeroplanes, but their show turned out to be later. So, we stayed for the free food and drinks, and then Golden Fable came out. Wow. Very nice 3-piece from N. Wales, they built a nice walk of sound with ethereal-yet-strong vocals from the frontwoman.  Definitely check out an album!


Red 7, 1;15pm

The buzz behind this female duo was HUGE. Two guitars, no drums, lots of punk-flavored harmonies.  Awesome!

Brandi Carlile

Central Baptist Church, 11:30pm

After waiting an hour to get in, we still had to sit up in the balcony, very far from the stage. And the stage was lit w/ small LED candles, so it was very dark too. (Those are the reasons/excuses for the lousy photo.)

Minor complaints aside, this was the best show of the day!  They put on a special acoustic show, with no electronics at all, not even microphones.  The acoustics in the church were amazing, and so was the whole show!

Wednesday, March 18, 2015

Water Liars

Old School, 10pm

A favorite of mine from NoiseTrade, and apparently a favorite for many others too. This was much more crowded than I expected!

Great music, though! 😀


Maggie Mae's, 9:45pm

Interesting-sounding 6-piece rock band. Not great in concert, but I should give an album a listen. 

Ex Cops

The Majestic, 9pm

3-piece pop-rock band. Ok, but nothing special.