SXSW 2011 Thursday

Clearly thinking negative thoughts will bring negative consequences. This week is literally trying to kill me. Thursday morning I was hit by a car. Nothing too serious but so scary. Have you ever rolled off of anyone’s windshield before? It’s oddly comical. I escaped with minor bruises/cuts and one sprained knee. Although bicycle is the best form of transportation during the festival, don’t leave your safety precautions at home. Please wear your helmet no matter how dorky it makes you look.

I had been on my way to a free show at the Spider House that Audrey and I had personally booked. Up first was a shared set by Naked Gods and Invisible Hand. The two bands have a split 7 inch together released by Django Kill. Naked Gods had awesome sound as well as a bluegrass twinge to their indie rock and roll. Invisible Hand was a little more poppy than their peers and the lead singer had a penchant for playing his guitar while lying on the ground.

Next up was BRAHMS, a trio of stylishly dressed pretty boys playing dark pop music. Their set seemed rather short as they had arrived about 15 minutes late. Also late to the show was Cloud Control from Australia. Although they were more than 20 minutes behind schedule they had a great reason for it. Apparently they were forced to hitchhike over to the venue. Their awesome jangly melodies drew the largest crowd so far that day. I nearly died when they covered the Butthole Surfers’ great anthem “Pepper.”

Sunglasses took the stage and were pretty much amazing. However, probably not the right kind of amazing to hold the average crowd at Spider House. Too experimental, I guess. It was two dudes. One had strange blond hair and was wearing some sort of children’s shirt while the other was punked out in a black denim vest and cutoffs. Awesomely enough, their biggest fans in the audience were a group of Japanese musicians. Hailing from Georgia where they attended art school in Savannah, the duo create multilayered pop songs out of electronic beats and a guitar with plenty of feedback.

Last on the lineup was The Diamond Center, a psych folk rock group that seemed to be just the thing to keep people’s attention. While their songs were long and drawn out, they had an outdoor festival kind of sound. The five piece will be back in Austin for the annual Psych Fest, taking place this year at the end of April.

The show was a success. The shop fixed my bike for free. I got two delicious free tacos. Things were starting to look up. But then I realized that my knee hurt probably a little more than it should and rode over to Brackenridge hospital. I was there three hours with very little entertainment. Thank god for the pinball game on my phone. At the end of my visit, they diagnosed my knee as being sprained. So now I have to wear an ace bandage and not partake in physical activity. Hmm, that seems just about impossible this week.

Disregarding everything I had been told, I rode over to Cheer Up Charlie’s to see the very end of KVRXplosion, KVRX’s biggest night show during SXSW. I got there in time to watch Lesands, an awesome electro pop group from San Diego that got the crowd dancing their eighties synth loving asses off.

Dominique Young Unique was the last performer that I stuck around to see. She has so much attitude and swagger. I felt so bad for the student sound people when she started going off on them for not having it right. Of course it’s not like she was present for the sound check anyway, diva. Her dress had strains of bronze sequins on it that sort of matched the black sequined tunic her crazy platinum long blond DJ was wearing. The weave she had on basically looked like a curly orangey brown mohawk. Let’s not forget about her fierce platform stilettos. When she finally got going, it was spot on amazing. Nearly at the end of her set, she abandoned the song she was in the middle of to launch into “Show My Ass,” which I like to think is a feminist dance piece.

And so I rode my bike home triumphantly to go to sleep for another day.

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