Tuesday, March 14, 2006

SXSW In Your Living Room.

I cannot even express the color of green I am this week as many people I know are in Austin, TX right now to frolic around in five days of music, beer, and food while I am stuck on the east coast wishing that I was there, or that a big pile of money would land on my head so I could be there. Next year, my friends. Even if it means I have to take up a collection by washing cars or something, I will be there.

At any rate, the SXSW website has my complete and utter attention because of a few reasons. You can go there and look at the schedule of bands playing each day, and if you see a cassette tape icon next to the band name, then that means they have a complimentary song for download. I know that this concept is not new and that you can do the same thing on MySpace or PureVolume, right? Of course you can, but the beauty of the SXSW site is that it weeds out all the shitty bands you'd normally have to go through to find something you like, because if the band sucks, they certainly aren't going to be one of the many that were invited to play this music festival/conference/extravaganza.

So, because I am a junkie when it comes to discovering new sounds, I have decided to pick out a few of the good ones I came across and list them here. All of the items are available for free download, so if you want the song, go to the SXSW site and search the band name, and you should be good to go.


**The Presets from Australia very much remind me of She Wants Revenge, so if you have been digging on that, you should check out the download they have to offer, "Are You The One?" There's a dance beat present with that monotonous voice tone similar to SWR. Listening to this song makes me think I should be in a large room with strobe lights and beautiful people surrounding me.

**The Rinse from Brooklyn is offering "Young Offender," which is a catchy little tune that uses a background rock that is similar to Bloc Party to contrast with the lead singer's poppy vocals.

**The Brother Kite's "Death Ray" is a melody that utilizes the partnership of edgy guitar rock and spacey vocals that sound much like an echo (of course, my speakers are not exactly stellar, so I may be hallucinating the echo sound). The last twenty seconds of this song remind me of a Gregorian chant or something along those lines that prompts a desire to meditate. I feel more relaxed already.

**My Education is the perfect follow-up to the end of the last band listed's song with their long, melodic, instrumental style in "Snake In The Grass." As I fall deeper into a calm spell with the soothing, psychedelic nature of the music, I'm reminded a little bit of Pilotdrift, as I frequently use their CD to enter the same kind of mood that My Education seems to be laying on me at the moment. If you care to test me, you can find Pilotdrift on the SXSW site, too, since they are also playing.

**Of Montreal should be checked out next with "Wraith Pinned to the Mist and Other Games" to snap you out of the chill spell the last two bands should have put you in. Of Montreal is from right here in Georgia, Athens to be exact, and has found a good bit of fame and following all over the U.S. among the obscure indie lovers everywhere. I like this song, and most of what I've heard out of them. This is one of those happy song beats that have you wishing you were outside on a sunny day riding your bike to a picnic in the park where you and your pals plan to have a gay ol' time. Who doesn't need one of those in their collection?

There are others, but I prefer to save them for later, because, as I stated the other day, the shows have wound down considerably due to SXSW. Cheers.
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