Katzenjammer at Threadgills
After their impromptu show in the middle of 6th street on Wednesday night, we had to check out Katzenjammer's full set. We went to Threadgills for some lunch (including the best spicy veggie burger I've had), and their set. With the rest of their instruments, and vocal mics, they were even more amazing. The harmonies sounded amazing, and they all played each other's instruments, switching from keyboards to mandolin to horns to balalaika. Their set was unbelievably perfect, including an homage to Janis Joplin.
Club Primo: Mouse House, UME, Follow That Bird
After Katzenjammer, I took a brief break before heading to Club Primo to catch UME, who'd I'd seen at a Christmas show with Trail of Dead. I arrived a little early and caught Mouse House, who'd been recommended to me, but hadn't made my list of shows. They played indie-funk, and it was a fun, cool show, before heading inside. I'd previously seen Ume at Red7 with a ton of people, so it was a bit disarming to see them at such a tiny little bar. Their show was no less blistering, though. Their music pairs catchy anthems with post-rock build-and-release structures. The build shows Lauren's gorgeous voice, and the release shows the band's ferocity, especially Lauren's. There are no still pictures of her playing, she's a hurricane of constant musical fury. After sweating out the show, I went back outside to grab a cigarette to the tunes of Follow That Bird, who play fairly straightforward indie rock. If I hadn't seen Jucifer or Ume in the same week, I might have enjoyed them a bit more.
The Bird and The Bee at Waterloo
By the 4th day, we were running dangerously low on energy. We figured our last show would be a low-key set from the cutesy electro duo The Bird And The Bee at Waterloo. We got there a little late, and saw them from the back of the store, but it was worth it anyway. The charm of singer Inara is even greater in person, than on singles like "polite dance song". Unfortunately, the sound had problems, and cut out during said song. After dinner, we felt a bit rejuvenated, and checked out a slightly larger Ruby Isle show at Lambert's, which was just as fun as their first show, albeit with proportionally less crowd. They also played one of their covers (Skinny Love), which was awesome. Afterwards, we gave up trying to decide on shows, and considered it over.
The 5 best shows from SXSW 2009:
- Kittens Ablaze (Friday)
- Jucifer (Wednesday)
- Katzenjammer (Saturday)
- Ruby Isle (Friday)
- The Rosebuds (Friday)