Crossed one alumnus band off my list the first day: Akron/Family. Wasn’t sure what to expect. The band’s in the Devendra Banhart psych-folk community but new album Set ‘Em Wild, Set ‘Em Free moves away from that a bit: tighter, more rock, less folk.
Though the band started with a few of those songs, the highlight was a 15?-minute psych jam that pulled four or five extra percussionists on stage, including Thor from Shearwater and a woman wearing a giant Indian headdress. Hippie to the max. People danced. Warm breeze. Loved it.
Thanks to running around, I heard precisely one-half of one Mae Shi song. Typical SXSW. (I also missed Baltimore arty-shred band Ponytail last night because they went on an hour earlier than I thought—but the minute we arrived, I swear, the party started running an hour behind—so we waited over two hours to see Crystal Stilts. Oh, my feet.) I really really want to go to the Saucony/MyOpenBar.com free rollerskating rink, which the Mae Shi play sometime today between 5 and 7. Berklee party runs ’til 5:30. Hmm.
Other bands I’ve seen: Vetiver, Titus Andronicus (love love love), friend’s band that used to be called the Clinical Girls but not anymore, Talk Normal (fierce drumming!), Langhorne Slim, friends’ band the Earth People Orchestra, singer/songwriter Colby something-or-other, the Sour Notes, half Lou Barlow’s last song. I feel lazy.