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Austin Dispatches Part 3a-3c: Monday Evening Quarterback [3/23/2009 08:57:00 PM]:

Just as i feared, the storm & stress of getting around and playing in Austin last week claimed too much of my time to keep up regular posting on SCR. All i have to offer by means of apology is a late-Monday trifecta recalling what the hell exactly i got into Thursday through Sunday.


The Human Party Virus found a host at the Cherrywood Cafe, located on a low-key block of 38 1/2 Street. The charmingly ramshackle exterior & number of vegetarian substitutes on the menu served as assurance that it would be a much more welcoming environ than the previous night's hostile takeover. I arrived in time to see the better part of Convair's set, mixing the more outre elements of British shoegaze with sheets of guitar-sourced shards of noise. I must say that Jon cut a striking feature with his Philmont-ready sun hat.

Next up was 500 Megatons Of Boogie, doing their best to fuse the raw power of Scratch Acid and Jesus Lizard with the boogie of Chuck Berry. They were highly successful, intensified that sticks were breaking & flying like so many splinters of old-growth forests while guitarist Erik Fancypants tore off a guitar solo completely unstrapped. I wished i had a Squishees shirt tha fit.

i proceeded to play a great three-way set with Convair and Wood & Felt. I brought my Yamaha CS-5 exclusively for this combination, and as always found myself immersed in a hypnotizing womb of interweaving, high-harmonic bliss. Garrett caught the whole thing to tape, providing a choice opportunity to cash in on that most lucrative of markets, the micro-series cassette pressing. Look out, John Olson.

i took in a set by Benjamin Wesley. i've wound up seeing him about 4 times this year and am still impressed that he pulls off the amount of sounds that he does all by his lonesome. i had to excuse myself from Female Demand's set to grapple with my last post and catch up with a former student who came to see me toggle LFOs in the midday sun.

Strong sets came courtesy of Hollywood Black (tighter and tighter every time i see them, even with a brand new drummer behind the kit) and Gretchen Schmaltz, so good that she played the same song twice with different words and i didn't even care. Golden Cities played a very relaxed set a little after the sun went down, to the apparent delight of several small children. We then sat another interview with Cougar TV as i nursed an iced cafe con leche to insure i'd stay awake to run down the street to catch Pocahaunted at 2908 Cole. We braved the wall of body heat (and body odor) that greeted us there to see the last 5 minutes of a trumpet-laden trance of a song. i scored an Ex Cocaine/Yellow Swans split for my next Genetic Memory shift, and we returned home to regroup for a foray into the belly of SXSW

Unfortunately, time constraints have reduced me to mere bullet points for the weekend. To wit:

Friday -Saw My Education, Medications and Edie Sedgewick at the Leisure Tourniquet day party. The latter features one of the fellows from El Guapo in drag doing campy soul-diva revue with some phenomenal deadpan humor and impeccable musical backing (courtesy of Medications). -Had to miss Zanzibar Snails as they played concurrently with Tambersauro. -Saw DD/MM/YYYY tear it up at the IndieHouston day party. -Tambersauro played the best set of its career under threat of being shut down by police for noise violations (Robert was literally scanning the street to run in and pull the plug if the Thin Blue Line rolled up). Friends danced among us, Evan did guest vocals on "Over & Down" and i played a flippin' incredible cowbell solo.

Saturday -Played three shows in 9 hours at Club 1808, located at a corner where i was offered hookers, Xanax and blunts in the span of about 30 seconds. -Ducked into Backspin Records long enough to snag 2 dubstep 12"s. -Nearly passed out from heat and exhaustion, but chatted with some of the kids from 8088 and heard a rippin' sets from Muhammid Ali & LIMB. -Got a great vegetarian Tex-Mex lunch at Mr. Natural's on Caesar Chavez. -Got done too late to go to the bridge shows that were apparently incredible.

Sunday -Played a satisfying Wall With One Side set after seeing The Faceless Orchestra. -Drove home without a blowout.

This was my first experience with the sensory/temporal/sonic overload of SXSW Week in Austin. i was glad to spend the week among friends, making music for them and receiving it in return. i saw many inspiring sets and met some sweet, talented people. But next year, i'm gonna make it to that bloody bridge show.


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