Tag Archives: Austin

Sunday Morning Afternoon Coming Down: Review–Guided By Voices’ Classic Lineup hits Texas

3 Oct

When I was visiting New York over the summer, a friend told me that the classic lineup of Guided By Voices (Robert Pollard, Tobin Sprout, Mitch Mitchell, Greg Demos and Kevin Fennell) was reuniting for a huge Matador anniversary show in Las Vegas. (This was a few days before the label officially announced the show.) I was excited about the news, but that excitement turned to sadness when I realized that I would never be able to afford the concert ticket, let alone a flight to Vegas (such is the plight of a lowly, unpaid blogger).

But the sadness changed back to excitement when I read about the Hallway of Shatterproof Glass tour, and the opening date in Austin. I bought tickets the day they went on sale and I was all set. It was at The New Pornographers show at the Palladium when I first discovered that a new GBV date had been booked at the venue.

At first I thought, “Well, shit. I’ve wasted money on a show almost four hours away that isn’t yet sold out and now there’s going to be one less than an hour away.” But I had a golden opportunity to see one of my favorite bands two nights in a row and to spend time in one of my favorite cities (that would be Austin, not Dallas). It also meant I could write a review comparing the two.

And to break the tiny bit of suspense that this review held in the first place, the Austin show blew the Dallas show away. Now I’ll explain why. Continue reading

Review: Fun Fun Fun Fest After Parties- Voxtrot at the Mohawk

8 Nov

Saturday night found us rushing to get to the Mohawk for their after show. As we were heading towards Red River, we could hear The Octopus Project playing “Music is Happiness” (my favorite of their songs) and as it turns out they only had three songs left in them. As late as it was, the line still went out the door and by the time we got in they were playing their last song. I was disappointed because they’re a fantastic to see live, but at least I got to see Yvonne in her plum sequined frock, looking like a tight rope walker.

Even though we missed all of the opening bands, I was happy that we made it for all of Voxtrot’s set. The band rarely plays live shows these days and I’d never had the chance to see them. I knew I would have a good time after the band came on stage to set up. They were in a great mood and ready to interact with the audience. When lead singer Ramesh Srivastava walked onto the stage, a girl behind me said, “OK. I still think he’s cute”, which seemed to be the consensus of the women in the room. At first sight Srivastava doesn’t look like a heartthrob, but with his soulful eyes, endearing dance moves (think a combination of Elvis, Stuart Murdoch and James Brown), soft voice and romantic lyrics it’s no surprise that indie girls swoon for him.

All of Voxtrot’s songs are catchy, with easy-to-learn lyrics and an infectious dance beat, but a few stood out that night. “The Start of Something”  is one of their more popular tunes and the one the audience, including me, reacted to the most. It’s a sweet song and almost nobody in the audience was standing still when they played it. I even let myself go and dance with a woman who had been invading my personal space during the entire set. When they played their cover of The The’s “This Is the Day”, my feelings of being back in the 1980s (in a good way) were crystallized. Srivastava seemed nervous about the song, but he put his unique brand on it. That is why I like Voxtrot–they take elements from past musical eras (mainly the 1980s with a little 1960s sprinkled in), but they still make their own sound. Their piano ballads, particularly “Soft and Warm”, stood out for me, probably because I’m a huge fan of power pop.

Overall, I was impressed with Voxtrot’s performance. They have great chemistry, with each other and the audience. They obviously love what they do, which always makes for a great show.

Interview: This Old House

1 May

Earlier in the month I was sitting around Denton trying to find something to do, when I noticed NTX Showlist had a show listed at The Hydrant Cafe. that featured a band named This Old House. Intrigued by the name I took sometime to search out the band, and after a little searching I managed to track down their myspace. To put it mildly I was blown away, this is what “Texas Stargaze” is supposed to sound like. So, I walked down to the venue saw I had no chance of getting in, and decided to try and catch up with the band at a later point. The problem was I didn’t count on having the music stick with me the way it did, so I set up an interview with the guys (Ryan McAdams, Drew McCary, Kennon Talley and Micheal Allison) a few weeks later. After spending a little time discussing the stray dog they took in named Norm, we sat down for a few questions. Continue reading

Interview: The Low Anthem

17 Mar

During The Low Anthem‘s  performance Saturday night at banter I felt as if I was really on the ground floor of something big. After  self-releasing their third album Oh My God, Charlie Darwin back in September of 2008, the trio of Ben Knox Miller, Jeff Prystowsky, and Jocie Adams have found themselves on Rolling Stone’s Rock Daily blog, and appeared on NPR . During NX35, while many of the area writers managed to get interviews with various other artist, I was lucky enough to quickly sit down with the group. Continue reading