Live: Buxton’s 10-Year Anniversary Show
[Ed. Note: Yes, this is very, very, very late in coming. Apologies for that, all — writer/photographer Jason Smith sent this in, and it slipped right through the damn cracks that apparently exist all over The Internet. Don’t blame Jason for the lateness; this one’s all mine, I’m afraid. Even still, hopefully it’s better late than never…]
FITZGERALD’S — 11/30/13: Ten years is a long time to be in a band. It’s like dog years. I’ve never been in a band for ten years — the band I’m in now has had the name for that long, but only one of the guys has been in the band the whole time… So like I said, ten years is a long time, and that’s something to celebrate. And Buxton brought together all their fans, friends, and family at Fitzgerald’s on Saturday, November 30th of this past year to celebrate their 10th anniversary with them.
I had a feeling my Texas Aggies were ultimately going to disappoint me (and they did later on DVR), so I left the television to head out to catch the opener, Deep Cuts. I’ve only witnessed Deep Cuts once (at FPSF) and was looking forward to hearing them again; I’m still having a hard time pinning their sound down to words. They have a bouncy, Britpop vibe with some Latin-based music influences creeping in. I’m looking forward to an album so I can listen to them more often and make a more solid connection to their music.
As they announced from the stage, Papermoons and Buxton go way back, so it was very nice to see them on the bill. Papermoons lived in Houston but moved to Austin four or five years ago, and I’ve seen them several times over the years, but the one that stands out most to me was seeing them at Boondocks about five years ago.
I there to see Elaine Greer, but Papermoons made an impression on me that night because their singer/guitarist used a foot-pedal keyboard to play bass. With that performance, he inspired me that night to buy my own foot pedal keyboard. He made me want to bring out my inner Geddy Lee (the singer/bassist from Rush who uses pedals extensively).
Anyway, I really shouldn’t let the bass pedals distract me from this review. Papermoons write beautiful, sad, alt-country music. Their drummer, Daniel Hawkins, is one of those drummers who plays exactly what the music calls for — never too much and never too little. That struck me especially at this show because I was standing right up front and they pulled the drums up to the front of the stage, so we were face to face for most of the set; a set which ended too quickly.
Buxton filled the room with fans, just as they had done for their album release show upstairs at Fitzgerald’s nearly two years ago. I haven’t seen them play at Fitz since that night, so all evening I was comparing the two shows and thinking back nostalgically over the last two years and how much I’ve enjoyed their most recent album, Nothing Here Seems Strange.
I also thought about how quickly two years goes by. Through the hour plus set, Sergio Trevino and company touched on songs from their whole ten years and brought out several special guests, including Haley Barnes, who dropped out of the band a little over a year ago to concentrate on college. It was wonderful to see Haley back with the guys. I always thought she was the key to Buxton blossoming into what they’ve become, probably because I had seen them three times before she joined and came away with the impression that they were trying to be a “cow-punk band.”
I’d dismissed them for two years, until I thought I ought to give them another chance (thanks to Jeremy Hart constantly singing their praises). It was that album release show I mentioned before that turned me into a fan. Obviously, Buxton has grown up and become one of Houston’s favorite bands over the years. Congratulations, guys, and here’s to the next ten, starting off with a new album this year! END
(Photos [top to bottom]: Chase Harris (Deep Cuts); Chris Wise (Buxton); Buxton. All photos by Jason Smith.)