2010 SxSW Top-Ten Shows

Had an amazingly difficult time narrowing down the “best of” band performances for 2010 SxSW.  Just doesn’t seem like “Top 10” is possible with 1800+ bands attending.  Of course, I can’t hit one of every bands’ shows, but did well by seeing bands from 16 countries and 24 USA states.  Is it surprising that 55% of US bands I saw were from NY, CA, & TX?  Also, interesting that there were 5 4 {updated Mar 30} countries represented in my 2010 top ten.  And, only 3 were official SxSW Showcase, the other 7 were industry sponsored day parties.  In some, but not all previous years, I have only noted what shows were my top ten alphabetically and not ranked in numeric preference order.  This year, I was able to actual present a ranking from 1-10, then 5 more as honorable mentions.  1 being the best.  Keep in mind that a band cannot be part of the top ten list if it appeared the previous (2009) year.

Usually, I depart Kansas City on mid-day Wednesday on AA, but left Wednesday early morning this year, so I would not miss that days’ day shows.  Even though, this meant that I would not sleep on Tuesday night, since the flight left so early.  I hope to continue this next year, since three of my top ten were from Wednesday day shows.  Including Tuesday, or five days total, I received only 9 hours of sleep.  Adrenaline, free Shiner, and free BBQ kept me near, but away from complete exhaustion.  Some quick math reveals that if a venue ran perfectly with shows from 11am to 2am each day from Wednesday through Saturday night (Sunday morning), then there would be 15 hours a day stage time.  If the venue had a split-stage setup (two stages- one inside and one outside, etc), and thirty minute set times, then that one venue could have 120 shows.  Wow!  Obviously it can’t and wouldn’t ever work perfectly that way, but that would be absolute best-case volume.

Fads- No more high running shorts and the expensive real (not knock-offs) Ray Bans seemed to have subsided.  Cheap 80’s sunglasses with neon ear pieces are still around but seem to have evolved to a more non-disposable and non-neon-bright-offensive (classier?) design.  Very little head bands and scarves this year.  Noted an increase in the “forest punks” versus usual “street punks”.  Forest punks are punks, but have adorned themselves in fox tails, feathers, and even leaves.  And, they seem not to shower as much as street punks.  Perhaps, think of them as 70’s NY punks combined with 60’s commune hippies with attitude.  They are more organic than urban.  Plenty of white leggings were spotted and lots of feather hair pieces.  On the music instrument side, the SG guitar noted in my previous Sx reports as everywhere in 2008 has all but vanished (what a pity).  Some Jaguars are still about from the 2009 noted fads and this year the Rickenbacker bass is everywhere.  The Nord keyboards have hung on, since first wrote about in 2007, but there are more and more MOOGs and relic tube keyboards on the scene.  Still not as many laptops as you would expect, but still somewhat around.

Maybe I was just a bit more out of the loop this year, but I did not bump into anyone famous this year, as I have in the past.  I’m very jealous that some friends met and had small talk with Bill Murray on Saturday or Sunday night.  Bill is one of my most-want-to-meet people.  Would have went way out of my way to find him.  Here he is serving Tequila at Sx. {added Apr 1}

Weather was a bit colder than usual, but believe that is on par for a generally colder globe this spring.  It started sprinkling on Friday night and rained hard on Saturday morning.  Don’t like to see any rain while at Sx since it spoils so many planned activities, but Saturday is probably the best day of the week that this can occur.  It was simply drizzly and cold.  It kept the streets much clearer  of bodies than it would on a normal Saturday which allows for easier getting-around.  I bought an embarrassingly ugly hoodie and gloves from a souvenir shop on 6th street and braved the day.  Most other folks may have wisely packed a light jacket before departing to Austin.  My new hoodie was so ridiculous, I was told I looked like a guy who should be sitting on the side of the road in a lawn chair taking bong hits.  But, it kept me warm enough to continue my Sx exploring.

A round of applause should be given to the organizers of Midwasteland Takeover (http://www.midwastelandtakeover.com).  They did a tremendous amount of work bringing the excellent sounds of KC & Lawrence bands to the  event.  Hard to comprehend the level of effort needed to pull this off.  I was able to stop by a couple of times, but my busy schedule kept me focused on the more elusive international bands that rarely make it to the states.  I ran across people who had been to the Midwasteland Takeover and all had good things to say about it.  Bravo guys!  Also, much praise to all of these bands that trekked 20+ hours round-trip from KC and Lawrence to perform a 30 minute set.

Here is some raw footage of ‘the shield’ thanks to Goggin (http://vimeo.com/10289410).  {added July 23}

Although this list will continue to reside on my MySpace account’s blog -as in a few years’ past- I will begin publishing in this WordPress blog format from this year forward, until further notice.  Just seems like it has outgrown the simple MySpace blog.  I have placed last year’s results in a post herewithin, for reference.  The 2009 Best Of SxSW MySpace is at: http://blogs.myspace.com/index.cfm?fuseaction=blog.view&friendId=46172650&blogId=478427330.  The 2010 Best Of SxSW will be at: http://blogs.myspace.com/index.cfm?fuseaction=blog.view&friendId=46172650&blogId=531680527.

Evfen though it has only been a few days since the official closing SxSW2010 ceremonies and I am happy it is over, so that I may get some rest, I am already craving next year’s events.  Viva 2010 SxSW, bring on SxSW 2011!  Thank you for spending the time to read through my opinions.  Please feel very free to leave your comments.  It was a lot of work, but a big pleasuring compiling this list.  I hope you enjoy these efforts.  Thanks to everyone involved.  Now onto the list.  I apologies in advance for the quality of the photos and videos.  …Funny how I always don’t seem to get good photos/videos of the best shows.  Must be because I am too busy enjoying the show.  🙂

Best 2010 SxSw Band Performaces (or, see the PDF at: <2010SxSWTopTenBandPerformances100324>)->

1) TV Ghost from Lafayette IN on 3/17 at Beerland presented by Can’t Stop The Bleeding Party.  Url:http://www.myspace.com/televisionghost.

  • Handbill

  • Video (no audio){added Apr 4}
  • Audio

2) Blind Shake from Minneapolis MN on 3/20 at Jaime’s Spanish Village Patio presented by Blackout Booking Showcase.  Url:http://www.myspace.com/theblindshake.

  • Photo

  • Video
  • Audio
  • Interview {added Apr 6}

SL9:  Been to Sx before? TBS: This was our first….it was pretty crazy…it was like the MN state fair but with no rides.  There were so many bands, we didn’t know where to start.  We just sat on the sidewalks and watched the people go by.
SL9: Prefer the official Sx shows or the unofficial? TBS: They we’re both great…very enthusiastic people at all of them (five total).  We didn’t feel much of a difference on our end. I think if we had to pick our favorite it would be playing Jaimes spanish restaurant’s patio in the 40 degree weather.  It was just a testament to the music lovers that they’d be out in full force at noon when the weather was far from lovely.
SL9:  Favorite Sx moment? TBS: Have to say it was being in the “pit” watching the Spits play.  Felt like we were 19 again.  That was our favorite show and favorite band by far.  Love em!
SL9:  How do we describe our bands sound? TBS: All things in moderation.
SL9:  Who is your hereo and why? TBS: Michael Yonkers because he is the true definition of an artist.  He is always pushing his sound and re-defining himself.  He waited many years for the music world to catch up to him and he still won’t look back.
SL9: What is your favorite smartphone app?  TBS: I don’t have a smart phone, but Dave (the drummer) does.  Our band uses it to find the nearest book store while on tour!  Thanks!  Jim of The Blind Shake

3) Carusella from Tel-Aviv ISRAEL on 3/17 at Barbella presented by Official SxSw Showcase.  Url:http://www.myspace.com/carusella.

  • Video (no audio)
  • Audio

4) Ghost of a Thousand from Brighton UK-England on 3/17 at Red Eyed Fly Patio presented by Official SxSw Showcase.  Url:http://www.myspace.com/theghostofathousand & http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Ghost_of_a_Thousand.

  • Video
  • Audio

5) Happy Hollows from Negahdariland CA on 3/17 at Red Eyed Fly Main presented by Little Red Radio Party.  Url:http://www.myspace.com/thehappyhollows.

    • Flyer

    • Photo

  • Video (no audio){added Mar 28}{added Mar 28}

6) Children Collide  from Melbourne VIC on 3/19 at Iron Gate presented by Dine Alone Records Party.  Url:http://www.myspace.com/childrencollide & http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Children_Collide.

    • Poster

  • Video
  • Interview {added Apr 7}

SL9: Been to Sx before?   CC: Yes
SL9: What were/are your impressions?   CC: It’s amazingly chaotic, but this being the second time around I was able to make a little more sense of it and had a very organised friend to follow around and catch some great shows.
SL9: Prefer the official Sx Showcases or the unofficial industry sponsored day parties?   CC: I prefer good bands. I didn’t take the time to differentiate.
SL9: How many shows did you do at Sx?   CC: We did four.
SL9: Your best show and why?   CC: Probably the Aussie BBQ at Maggie Mays, it was our last one and we were pretty relaxed. Always fun playing with or to friends.
SL9: Plan to Return?   CC: Who knows…
SL9: Favorite Sx 2010 moment?  …Show?  …Band?  CC: Watching Warpaint then Acid Mother Temple right after. Different venues, extremely lucky, unplanned viewing both times.
SL9: In less than 100 characters, how do you describe the band’s sound?  CC: I try not to.
SL9: Who is your hero and why?  Really.  CC: Steve Irwin (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Steve_irwin). Bloody beauty.
SL9: What is your favorite smartphone app?  How is your band using today’s technology?  CC: Ummm…I’m not sure my phone is that smart. Our band probably doesn’t use that much of “today’s technology” but I like to write silly Playschool/Vangelis type songs on my laptop while we’re flying places. I guess that’s a little bit “now”.   ooh hang on, I just learnt how to use smileys too  .  Johnny of Children Collide

7) Gay Witch Abortion from Minneapolis MN on 3/19 at Soho presented by Official SxSw Showcase.  Url:http://www.myspace.com/gaywitchabortion.

    • Photo

  • Video (no audio){added Mar 28}
  • Audio

8) CocoComa from Paris FRANCE Chicago IL {updated Mar 30} on 3/20 at Beerland presented by Goner Records Party.  Url:http://www.myspace.com/cococoma.

  • Audio
  • Video {added Apr 4}

9) Duchess Says from Montreal QC on 3/20 at Galaxy Main presented by Brooklyn Vegan and M is For Montreal Party.  Url:http://www.myspace.com/duchesssays & http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Duchess_Says.

  • Poster

  • Photos

  • Video{added Mar 28}{added Apr 4}{added Apr 4}
  • Audio

10) Cruddy from Austin TX on 3/17 at Beerland presented by Can’t Stop The Bleeding Party.  Url:http://www.myspace.com/cruddysux.

  • Handbill- Same as TV Ghost Aboe (on same bill).
  • Aduio

Honorable Mention) Dikes of Holland from Austin TX on 3/17 at Headhunters Patio.  Url:http://www.myspace.com/dikesofholland.

Honorable Mention) Little Girls from Toronto ON on 3/20 at Club Primos- Inside.  Url:http://www.myspace.com/littlelittlegirls.

Honorable Mention) Shellshag from Brooklyn NY on 3/20 at Jaimie’s Village Inn.  Url:http://www.myspace.com/shellshag.

Honorable Mention) Thee Oh Sees from San Francisco CA on 3/18 at Spiderhouse- Stage 1.  Url:http://www.myspace.com/ohsees.

Honorable Mention) When Dinasaurs Ruled The Earth from Austin TX on 3/20 at Club Primos- Outside.  Url:http://www.myspace.com/lildinos.

Some Fun Photos (one is of the mayor of Austin):

Twitter Traffic

Amazing. Of what I believe to b my top 10 Sx list, only 3 were official Sx showcases. The other 7 were industry sponsored day parties.

about 1:40 PM Mar 25th  via Twitterrific

Still lookg over my Sx data, but made some progress towards ‘best of’ list. Determined that I saw bands from 16 countries & 24 states at Sx.

8:41 PM Mar 23rd via Twitterrific

…altho, I’m watchg my niece 2nyt & later will attend an Audubon Society lecture on the Kaw River. So, expectg little progress on Sx list.

12:51 PM Mar 22nd via Twitterrific

@AcrylicInNature: oh, & I’ll eventually get the usual blog w relevent links & best odd posted.

7:31 PM Mar 21st via Twitterrific

Last load of laundry done. Laptop docked. Havg homemade

7:06 PM Mar 21st via Twitterrific

Cococoma! (@ Beerland w/ 2 others) http://4sq.com/5wYicC

3:44 PM Mar 20th via foursquare

http://yfrog.com/hqoxwj Blind shake.

2:19 PM Mar 20th via Twitterrific

I’m at Maggie Mae’s (323 E 6th St, Austin) w/ 9 others. http://4sq.com/5ldVKn

2:02 PM Mar 20th via foursquare

I’m at Encore (611 Red River, 6th St., Austin). http://4sq.com/8UZ1xT

1:15 PM Mar 20th via foursquare

I’m at Emo’s outdoor (6th and Red River, Austin). http://4sq.com/aT8byE

12:40 PM Mar 20th via foursquare

I’m at Bayou Lounge (500 East 6th St, Neches St, Austin). http://4sq.com/aK1GLx

11:24 AM Mar 20th via foursquare

http://yfrog.com/iyqk8hj Roman numerals

11:24 AM Mar 20th via Twitterrific

Sooo ready for sleep.

4:50 AM Mar 20th via txt

Band of skulls. Love em. (@ Maggie Mae’s w/ 14 others) http://4sq.com/5ldVKn

1:23 AM Mar 20th via foursquare

I’m at The Hideout Theatre (617 Congress Ave, E 7th St, Austin). http://4sq.com/44DiiB

12:48 AM Mar 20th via foursquare

http://yfrog.com/j4gtvj

12:30 AM Mar 20th via Twitterrific

http://yfrog.com/0enswtj

10:42 PM Mar 19th via Twitterrific

Jere comes the rain

10:40 PM Mar 19th via Twitterrific

I’m at Rusty Spurs (403 East 7th St, Trinity, Austin) w/ 2 others. http://4sq.com/dcRS0v

10:39 PM Mar 19th via foursquare

I’m only so-so about born ruffians new songs.

10:31 PM Mar 19th via Twitterrific

http://yfrog.com/cakhrej

9:56 PM Mar 19th via Twitterrific

I’m at Soho Lounge (217 East 6th St, Austin) w/ 5 others. http://4sq.com/b3pWAL

8:45 PM Mar 19th via foursquare

The chapman family (@ Latitude 30) http://4sq.com/cig9CT

8:14 PM Mar 19th via foursquare

I’m at Shangri-La (1016 E 6th St, at Medina St, Austin) w/ 2 others. http://4sq.com/7Jv2VB

5:23 PM Mar 19th via foursquare

Balcony at klub krucial. http://yfrog.com/55nxoj

5:13 PM Mar 19th via Twitterrific

Tobacco (@ Mohawk w/ 21 others) http://4sq.com/2sgNU0

4:30 PM Mar 19th via foursquare

Changed my tire tube today. Didn’t put the front brakes back on to save time. Hope I member that n 10hrs & 15beers. http://yfrog.com/e7n8nj

4:29 PM Mar 19th via Twitterrific

Just now gettg over da hangover.

4:24 PM Mar 19th via Twitterrific

Rock n roll chicken. http://yfrog.com/jaks9cj

3:43 PM Mar 19th via Twitterrific

Coathangers r settg up. (@ Karibu) http://4sq.com/7QjYcF

3:38 PM Mar 19th via foursquare

Pocahaunted. (@ Ms Bea’s) http://4sq.com/9mxXod

2:52 PM Mar 19th via foursquare

Tyler jon Tyler. http://yfrog.com/j4q7jj

12:45 PM Mar 19th via Twitterrific

I’m at Longbranch Inn (1133 E 11th St, Austin). http://4sq.com/7DLcsw

12:16 PM Mar 19th via foursquare

Why does the ringing in my ear sound like. David lee Roth singing Dance The Night Away?

6:38 AM Mar 19th via Twitterrific

Japanthers. That’s all I got to say.

1:18 AM Mar 19th via Twitterrific

Dum dum girls. http://yfrog.com/42xluj

12:04 AM Mar 19th via Twitterrific

El ten eleven. Lots btr than I thought it would. http://yfrog.com/1nn3ifj

11:31 PM Mar 18th via Twitterrific

El ten eleven (@ IAVA’s SXSW Party at Submerged) http://4sq.com/8XmRRf

11:30 PM Mar 18th via foursquare

I’m at Canvas Bar & Gallery (105 E 5th St, at Congress, Austin) w/ 2 others. http://4sq.com/4JbW5S

8:31 PM Mar 18th via foursquare

@ELMoore: Congress bridge??? Not sure which bridge.

7:34 PM Mar 18th via txt

@ELMoore: Ty segall & thee oh sees will b at the bridge show too. Congress bridge!

7:32 PM Mar 18th via txt

Just met & chatted w John dyer of The Oh Sees. He’s slowly becomg a legend. Amazg show too.

5:33 PM Mar 18th via Twitterrific

Golden Triangles. http://yfrog.com/2ttlsuj

4:00 PM Mar 18th via Twitterrific

I spy lots of sun burnt people.

3:23 PM Mar 18th via Twitterrific

Knew I’d eventually catch em. Kid Congo. Full style. http://yfrog.com/jxqwqzj

3:18 PM Mar 18th via Twitterrific

Thought I’d close with a Roman Numerals (from Kansas City MO on 3/20 at Bayou Lounge) video.  Sorry no audio.  Audio now included.  Actual videostarts at around 1:30.  {updated Mar 31}.  Need to think about how to better do video (and photo) for next year.  I have much better video and audio from previous years, but just refuse to lug around another piece of electronic equipment.  May reconsider this for the future.

Revision / Update Block {added Apr 12}:
Mar 28 – Added two Happy Hollows videos
Mar 28 – Added Gay Witch Abortion video
Mar 28 – Added Duchess Says video
Mar 30 – Corrected CocoComa hometown to Chicago versus Paris
Mar 30 – Corrected to 4 countries versus 5
Mar 31 – Added audio to video of Roman Numerals
Apr 1 – Added Bill Murray video
Apr 4- Added TV Ghost video
Apr 4 – Added CoCoComa video
Apr 4 – Added two Duchess Says video
Apr 6 – Added The Blind Shake interview
Apr 7 – Added Children Collide interview
Apr 12 – Added this revision block

Jul 23 – Added Midwasteland Footage video

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2 Responses to “2010 SxSW Top-Ten Shows”

  1. Anastasia Says:

    Slummy this is AMAZING! What a wonderful job you’ve done with the list and describing all of those little details to make me feel like I was there with you! And the organization is remarkable…as always. 🙂

    I am looking forward to working my way through all of the links and videos! really, bravo!

    thanks for sharing!!!
    stasia

  2. Midwest Music Foundation Says:

    Wow! Thank you for the kind words about the Midwasteland Takeover event we help to put on! We were very happy how it went and are looking forward to doing to again next year!

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