[SXSW]: La Luz @ Street-Legal Guitars (March 13, 2014)

By Will Oliver, March 20th 2014 — with 1 comment


I found my way over to a secret Ty Segall show at a guitar shop, and the first opener was Seattle’s La Luz. Signed to Hardly Art, the all-female quartet played enjoyable jangly surf-rock. Their set was a vibrant, one full of good vibes. It served as my introduction to these girls, and I can now call myself a fan.

They released their debut album It’s Alive last year. Below you can check out “Call Me In The Day”, a track from the album. A few more photos from their show are posted after.
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Future Islands @ Hype Hotel (March 13, 2014)

By Will Oliver, March 20th 2014


Ask most SXSW attendees who was the “winner” of SXSW, most would tell you Future Islands, and you know what, they’re right. I don’t think any other act left the festival with as much buzz and praise as the Baltimore, Maryland band.

What’s odd is that with the release of their latest LP Singles this week, the band have four albums under their belt. So by no means are they newbies. But they’re starting to connect with audiences on a totally different level. The first start was their epic performance of “Seasons (Waiting On You)” on Letterman. Then they’ve been just plain killing it live. Word of mouth spread, and damn, I don’t think there’s a hotter band going right now.

I’m glad because after seeing them live for the first time at Hype Hotel, these guys deserve it. Frontman Samuel Herring is as captivating of a frontman as they come. His passionate, husky vocals and crab-like dance movements are quirky and awkward (in the best way). But they’re very much his, and because its so honest and true, its transcendent. You’ll think of them when you’re listening to Future Islands or the next time their name comes up. When he wasn’t dancing he was singing to fans, looking at you dead in the eyes as he conveyed his lines.


Getting to hear “Seasons (Waiting On You” live made me appreciate what these guys are about. They have this quality to them that just hits you like a ton of bricks, taking over your entire body and soul without you even realizing, or knowing why. They just got it.

Future Islands have a sold out show at Webster Hall on April 30. I advise you find a way to get your hand on tickets, as it’s a show you don’t want to miss. Hopefully I will see you there.

Find many photos of their fantastic performance below. But first, here’s their Letterman performance:
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[SXSW]: Chromeo @ Hype Hotel (March 12, 2014)

By Will Oliver, March 19th 2014 — with 1 comment


What better way to end my first day of SXSW than catching Chromeo? Especially at the Hype Hotel, which was a rather intimate place to see a band like Chromeo who can most certainly fill up large spaces.

Dave 1 & P-Thugg mixed business with pleasure, seriously hammering through all of their classic tracks, but doing it with a smile. They got a full fledged dance party in the crowd, a well earned victory for sure.

When you see Chromeo, you must be prepared to cut loose and take part in all dance activities.The duo always deliver an energetic performance that begs for movement, and if you don’t oblige, it just be plain disrespectful. They mostly stuck with classics, but they also delivered a fair share of the new material off their upcoming LP, White Women.

I’m excited to see what kind of damage the new album will do, especially when I see them at Terminal 5 in May. Find some more photos of their performance which are posted below.
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Although I caught Albert Hammond, Jr. only a few months ago when he opened up for Jake Bugg, I couldn’t pass up a chance to see him again. His set at Hype Hotel featured many of his tracks from Yours To Keep as well as from his more recent AHJ EP.

He brought all the energy that a frontman should, even jumping up and grabbing onto a rafter that hung above. His band sounded even tighter than the first time, making me excited to hear what his next full length album with them could be.

Check out some photos from his set below. Read the rest of this entry »


L.A. rockers Together PANGEA released their new album Badillac earlier this year via Harvest Records. They played many tracks off of it and more on Wednesday night at Hype Hotel. It was a devastating energetic set that was a great deal of fun. These guys know how to rock out and in a balls to the wall fashion that was perfect for a bit of day drinking.

Check out some more photos of their set below.
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[SXSW]: Avi Buffalo @ Buffalo Billiards (March 11, 2014)

By Will Oliver, March 19th 2014 — with 1 comment


After all these years it took a trip to SXSW in 2014 to finally catch Avi Buffalo. It’s been four years since the release of their debut album, and based on how many new songs they played, the new one shouldn’t be too far off.

The new live lineup works well as far as I can tell. The new songs all sounded great, soaked in that dreamy California sound that captivated us years ago. It was awesome to finally get to hear some older material live such as “What’s In It For?”

Find some photos of their set below. Read the rest of this entry »


After catching some more films at SXSW for Monday Morning Matinee, I found time to catch a set from Avi Buffalo at Buffalo Billiards to ring in my Tuesday night. I got there a bit early and caught a set from L.A. native Madi Diaz. I hadn’t heard of her prior to the performance, but enjoyed what I saw. She’s a talented performer, and has quite a few good songs up her sleeve.

Here’s a track called “Stay Together” that I enjoyed hearing live. Find it posted below. Right after it are a few more shots of her performance. Read the rest of this entry »