TVD’s Best of SXSW 2012 in Photos: Friday, Saturday, Sunday
(Part 2 of 2)

By Friday of South-by-Southwest, the bone-tiredness is starting to set in. You’ve been living on beer and food-truck tacos and BBQ (usually) because there is never time to have a sit-down meal (and the food truck tacos and BBQ are tremendous). The street crowd of on-lookers and weekend attendees has swelled. You’re running on maybe 16 hours of sleep since Tuesday. But there’s so much to see and hear yet! So what was the best of Friday, Saturday, and Sunday this year?

FRIDAY    |    Friday was kicked off in one of the best ways possible with an excellent breakfast taco and the lovely songs of Eric Bachmann and the full band version of Crooked Fingers at the Paste day party.

“Sleep All Summer,” from the band’s Reservoir Songs Dignity and Shame may be a sad song lyrically, but live, it is a stunner. Tracks played from the latest record, Breaks in the Armour, are so good.

SATURDAY    |    I can remember exactly where I was when I heard Copper Blue by Bob Mould’s band Sugar for the first time, something I can’t say about every record I own. So when I heard that the MOG.com day party was going to have Sugar, reformed with Jason Nardancy (Telekensis) and Jon Wurster (Superchunk) playing Copper Blue in full, I knew I wouldn’t be doing the usual jumping around to venues during that timeslot.

Like a group of indie rock Johnny Cash’s all dressed in black, Sugar’s performance was captivating from the time Mould played that opening riff of “The Act We Act,” up to and through the bombastic “Man on the Moon.” As I shot pictures from the balcony, a guy next to me asked, “Will you be sure to take my picture when I throw myself over this railing from the pure ecstasy I’m feeling right now?”

SUNDAY    |    Many folks leave South-by on Sunday but we stick around every year for the big benefit show that Alejandro Escovedo does every year at the famous Continental Club. Escovedo is well-loved by fans and musicians alike and as such, always gets great acts to come play.

This is also a great time to play “Spot the Famous Music Person Not Scheduled to Play” as there tends to be a lot of known people who aren’t playing the show but who attend every year. (This year, B.P. Fallon and David Fricke, among others were in attendance.) The lineup for 2012 was bigger than usual and included Jesse Malin, Tommy Stinson, and a really great indie band from Kansas called John Velghe & the Prodigal Sons.

But the best, apart from Escovedo of course, was DC’s own Kid Congo Powers & the Pink Monkey Birds. Kid, who had been in The Cramps and Gun Club, the latter with Escovedo, has the voice of Vincent Price, the hip-swing of Rhett Miller, and a ridiculously infectious psychedelic post-punk sound all his own. By Sunday of South-by, sometimes it’s amazing you are even still standing (a few years ago at this shindig, I actually managed to fall asleep during Hanoi Rocks). But there can be no sleeping during the songs of Kid Congo and his incredibly tight band, the Pink Monkey Birds, there is only an infusion of adrenaline and a whole lot of dancing.

I asked Kid later if they had plans to play live in DC any time soon, and he said no as they were recording a new record. But when they do, and if you see one show a year, make this the one you see. Watching Kid play a mean slide guitar and yell “I’m cramped!” with an entire room on cue, is more fun than you’ll ever imagine.

Additional photos from these sets and more can be seen here.

This entry was posted in The TVD Storefront. Bookmark the permalink. Trackbacks are closed, but you can post a comment.
  • WilliamPhillipAldridge

    Crooked Fingers’ “Sleep All Summer” is from the album Dignity & Shame, not Reservoir Songs.  Reservoir Songs is an album of cover songs.

    • ericalbruce

       @WilliamPhillipAldridge : Gah you are correct sir, that is the danger of writing on heavy cold meds. Changed, and thank you.

      • WilliamPhillipAldridge

         @ericalbruce  @WilliamPhillipAldridge
        No worries.  I wish I coulda been there for both the CF show *and* the Bob Mould show!  Two of my absolute favorites!

  • SUPPORTING YOUR LOCAL INDIE SHOPS SINCE 2007


  • Alternative Text Alternative Text Alternative Text Alternative Text Alternative Text Alternative Text Alternative Text Alternative Text Alternative Text Alternative Text Alternative Text Alternative Text Alternative Text Alternative Text Alternative Text Alternative Text Alternative Text Alternative Text Alternative Text
  • Alternative Text Alternative Text Alternative Text Alternative Text Alternative Text Alternative Text Alternative Text Alternative Text Alternative Text Alternative Text Alternative Text Alternative Text Alternative Text Alternative Text Alternative Text Alternative Text Alternative Text Alternative Text Alternative Text Alternative Text Alternative Text Alternative Text Alternative Text