SXSW 2011 Roundup with NPR’s On Point and Spin

Yuck at Stubb's BBQ (Kathryn Yu)

So alright, you’ve read enough, heard enough, had enough of SXSW 2011. Well, indulge me this one last post. Upon returning from Austin, my work wasn’t yet done. Each member of the Spin crew took a moment to reflect via this final best/worst poll thingie. Some great observations in there from wonderfully insightful folks like Doug Brod, Charles Aaron, Steve Kandell, Peter Gaston, William Goodman and Kevin O’Donnell. (Also check out Spin’s Best Photos.)

But that wasn’t all. While embedded in the action, I received an email from NPR, asking if I’d do a post-SXSW chat for On Point with Tom Ashbrook. I did, as did Bay Area music critic Liz Colville (Daily Beast, Pitchfork, Dazed & Confused). We spoke for an hour about our favorite moments of the festival, and even fielded a few calls from listeners. Listen to the talk by clicking here, or here.
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SXSW 2011 Day 4: Pains of Being Pure at Heart, Jamie XX, Dan Deacon, Ty Segall, more

Pains of Being Pure at Heart at Cheer Up Charlie's (Kathryn Yu)

For the final day of SXSW, I went big, big, big. Though I saw close to 40 bands over the duration of the conference, nearly half of those were notched on Saturday. Memorable moments not included in my Spin coverage below: Catching Wallpaper’s Ricky Reed when he leapt into the crowd at Vice Bar, head-nodding to Shlohmo’s beat-burbling set at Daedelus’ Magical Properties showcase, rocking out to the chillblues/blueswave of Writer in a dusty field at Cheer Up Charlie’s, and shredding my arm hopping a fence whilst trying to get in to see Big Freedia at Mess With Texas (turned out her set was long over, and there wasn’t actually a wait to get in). Yeah, you could say I went out in style.

  • The Best and the Worst: Pains of Being Pure at Heart, Dan Deacon, Jamie XX, We Are Enfant Terrible, Ty Segall, and Superhumanoids.

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SXSW 2011 Day 3: Odd Future, Das Racist, Pentagram, Little Dragon, Skrillex, more

Little Dragon at SXSW 2011 (Ian Witlen)

Wow. If my love for all things Odd Future didn’t already color me a fanboy, consider the deed done after I saw the impossible happen (read the review below) at their daytime gig at an altogether awesome party thrown by legendary skate mag Thrasher. Readers of this blog will also know I’m a dogged Das Racist apologist, and them dudes kicked things off right by going through a case of PBR while onstage. But that’s not all that happened on Day 3. I ate a pair of strikingly delicious sliders (think Carl’s Jr.’s Bacon Western Cheeseburger done gourmet and petit), Little Dragon made beautiful music (following up a one-two-punch of Gayngs and Black Lips), and Skrillex inspired Austiners to shake a leg.

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SXSW 2011 Day 2: Wu-Tang Clan, Prince Rama, Gary Wilson, B-Boys and Violins, more

Odd Future, because this is what a Wu show should look like. (Ian Witlen)

On the second day of SXSW, my true love gave to me, five-eights of Wu-Tang, two dirty hippies, and a freeeeak with a bag on his head. Day One was an absolutely ecstatic experience for me, but Day Two got me a lil bummed. First, in discovering how obnoxious Prince Rama apparently is live (despite being pretty swell on record). Second, in waiting no less than two hours to watch the Wu-Tang Clan perform to positively “meh” results. Three, in seeing a kid get hit by a car, then scamper wounded into the night on the bank of the Colorado River. It was his fault, but that didn’t keep the event from being a shocking collision with reality. But it wasn’t all bad:

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SXSW 2011 Day 1: Yuck, James Black, Freddie Gibbs, Baths, Big K.R.I.T., Gold Panda, more

James Blake at Stubb's BBQ (Kathryn Yu)

OMG. Am alive. Thx AUS. SXSW is over and most of its attendees escaped unscathed. Actually, most left with a little blood on their shoes (thanks to the amazing Odd Future, or that terrible fuckstick Ben Weasel), but most of us are better for it. We’re survivors, and our iPods shall forever be fatter and better curated thanks to the magnificent aurual deeds we witnessed in Austin. Catch up on what you missed, or relive it via my next few posts. The Spin team came and conquered. Here’s Day One, as seen by yours truly (and friends).

  • The Best and the Worst: Yuck, James Blake, Freddie Gibbs (shout out to Mexicans With Guns), Gold Panda, Baths, Grouplove, and Big K.R.I.T., with mini mentions of Matthewdavid and Tech N9ne.

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