I'm going to start this off by apologizing to everyone who tried to come to the AP.net/Indieclick party yesterday afternoon and couldn't get in because they weren't 21. I didn't realize it was 21+ until the morning of and I think it took a couple of other people by surprise as well. I saw a number of kids get turned away at the door – you can go ahead and yell at me in the replies to this if you'd like. Next year, we promise, we'll make sure that the venue we host the party is at will be all ages. I tried to sneak in as many kids as I could through the back but if you weren't some of the first few to show up, the entrance I was using got shut down. Damn.
Besides the whole age limit fiasco, the party was a big success and the acoustic performances were fantastic. Deep Sea Diver played a short set as people were coming in and Pony Up were supposed to play afterwards but apparently something happened and the band didn't show up in the end. One of the best sets of the day, however, belonged to Chuck Ragan of Hot Water Music who played a searing half-hour set – listening to a man like that sing in such a small, private environment made me and, I think, everyone else fully recognize the emotion he put into his songs. I don't care about clichés, I really was moved by his performance. After his performance was This Providence, whose songs translated surprisingly well to an acoustic setting. If I heard them correctly, it was their first acoustic-only show and they did a great job staying true to the songs still.
Up next was Stolen Transmission Records' The Oohlas, who lived up to much of their recent blog hype during their set. Limbeck played after them and, besides Chuck Ragan (obviously), their music was probably some of the easiest to play acoustically. It made the songs a little less polished and for the style of music that Limbeck plays, it seemed to almost suit them better. MC Lars followed them and while his set wasn't really “acoustic” (acoustic hip hop?), it still was one of the more fun sets of the evening. His videos that went along perfectly with his songs showcased his humorous lyrics and he definitely got the crowd going – that and he, of course, mentions AP in one of his songs and put up the AP logo on the big screen for a few seconds. If only Hearts That Hate had been able to make it as well. Brazil played the last set that I sort of caught before I had to run off to see a friend play at another venue and I didn't even make it through all of their set, but by that time the crowd had reached a large size and with all of the running around we were doing for various tasks, I admit that I wasn't able to really watch their set much.
What I was running off to see was Autonym, a band that my friend Will sings/screams in. If the name sounds familiar, they're the hardcore band out of Los Angeles that recently released a full-length album that clocks in at a blistering fifteen minutes and also has an accompanying full-length novel. Their set was intense and their energy really showed in their performance – it was the first time I had seen them live and it was definitely worth the jog. Things started getting pretty random after that when it came to my schedule and I ended up at an Ernest Jenning/Thrill Jockey showcase where I watched The Black Hollies. This Jersey band who I had never heard of before had a blues-influenced, almost Brit-rock sounding and they played a fairly decent set. After them, I went over and saw Lesbians On Ecstasy perform. Yes, it was their name that attracted me at first, and yes, it is made up of lesbians. Four to be exact. This quirky Montreal quartet are on the same label (Alien 8) as Les Georges Leningrad and formerly The Unicorns, so once I found that out, I could see how they fit in. Lots of danceable, spastic and very odd electronic-influenced rock that were “beats for the modern lesbian,” as they described themselves. What I was really waiting for though, was Prototypes, a French electro-rock act that I had been listening to for a little while but hadn't been able to catch live yet. I'm a sucker for singing in French, so their blend of garage-rock-esque sounds and touches of electronica all while sung in French was a killer combination for me.
After this however was one of the odder nights I had had in a long time. I went over with a couple of friends to the Vice afterparty. I made it just in time to catch the last half of Against Me!'s set and it was one of the best things I've seen all week. Imagine Against Me! Playing, shirts off, in a small and extremely crowded building (a “secret” location). The crowd was getting extremely into it, opening up a mosh pit right in front. Most of the moshers were shirtless and drunk, just the way they ought to be at the party, and some members of the band even jumped into the crowd at times. As a friend of mine said, this show brought him back to his younger days of seeing Against Me! playing in tiny clubs and random venues. Against Me!, in all honesty, kicked ass and there is no other way to describe it. The free whiskey and beer (the bar was handing out six-packs of Lone Star beer) seemed to perfectly complement the situation. About twenty minutes after Against Me! were done, however, a loud crash that I heard while hanging out near the entrance ended up being part of the balcony on the roof of the building collapsing. The party was shut down and it was sad to see a party with so much more potential (Black Lips were to be playing later) shut down at least a good three or four hours before it'd be over, but c'est la vie. Having a balcony collapse (no one got hurt, I believe) and the cops and fire trucks showing up minutes later is definitely one of the more random ways I've ended a night. All I know is that as soon as I heard a crash and sirens in the distance, my friends and I went back to our car and got the hell out of there.
i wanted to stop by to see the graduate, but ended up staying at the alternative press day show longer than i expected....
my sxsw day 4:
alternative press dayshow:
-the photo atlas
-envy on the coast
-spitalfield acoustic = amazing, they also played novacaine for the first time live ever!
-as tall as lions
-the spill canvas
-cute is what we aim for
mountain dew showcase:
-self against city
-hawthorne heights (the new songs actually sound pretty decent)
(i wanted to go see the presidents of the united states of america, but was so tired i didn't feel like leaving rio cause they actually had places to sit)