Long live rock, I need it every night

Monday, March 23, 2009

SXSW in Review: Tuesday Night

It just ended a few days ago but already SXSW 2009 is a blur. I regret not keeping a running list of every band I saw. Rookie mistake. It was almost as dumb as not buying Dr. Scholl's Massaging Gel inserts. I mocked my buddy for wearing them the first night and then apologized the next day when I realized he was much smarter than me.

So, Tuesday night. SXSW officially starts on a Wednesday but that doesn't prevent people from kicking off the celebration a little early. It's also nice for those of us that live in Austin to catch some bands before the throngs arrive.

First stop of the night was the Art Disaster No. 8 party. Carol Bui was on the bill so that was good enough for me. Originally, I planned to stick around for The Laughing (see them at Red & the Black on April 2nd!), Pomegranates, and Belaire. However, after Carol's set I said hello to the band and then made a quick exit.

My buddy John from Side One Track One scored us VIP wristbands to the IFC Crossroads party featuring Gomez and The Decemberists. Considering I've often stated I disliked both bands I was unusually excited for this party. Maybe it was the small venue, my excitement for SXSW in general, or it was just the free beer. Okay, it was the free beer.

Gomez was up first and while they have some decent songs I just can't get into this band. On Twitter I said, "Gomez is the British Bare Naked Ladies. Not impressed." I actually meant to say Guster, not Bare Naked Ladies. The BNL comparison was too harsh.

Colin Meloy, lead singer of The Decemberists and mutton chop enthusiast, took the stage first. He played a little ditty that highlighted his soaring vocals, underrated guitars skills, and his floppy hair. Soon the band joined him onstage and I was quickly backtracking on all the negative things I had said about them over the years. Previously, all I heard was Colin's voice, which is a little annoying. However, seeing them live (and from the front row) I was astounded at how talented they were and how well each song worked. Meloy is an engaging front man and the band looked as if they were having as much fun their fans. Overall, big thumbs up. I'm here to admit: I was wrong about The Decemberists.


Jimbromski said...

Potsy and I saw Gomez a few years ago, they were pretty crap, and the one dude kept making all these unfunny quips.

Jumbo Slice said...

I was surrounded by Gomez super fans. Before the show they were telling me how they followed the band for years, been to dozens of concerts, loved all their records, etc. Halfway through the set I wanted to smack these people for loving such a lame band. Later the anger turned to pity.