SXSW 2017: Monday night at the DIY / Ticketweb UK showcase at Latitude 30 – 13th March 2017

By on Monday, 27th March 2017 at 4:00 pm
 

It’s going to take some getting used to that the Music portion of SXSW artist showcasing officially starts on Monday and not Tuesday. Carrie and I have enjoyed either showcases at the British Music Embassy at Latitude 30 starring Northern Irish artists or sponsored by Trackd last year the last few times we’ve been in Austin, so it was nice to mix things up a bit this year with a lineup sponsored by someone else. This night’s showcase was sponsored by UK free magazine DIY and the UK arm of Ticketweb, now part of Live Nation. I arrived just in time for SuperGlu, the Manningtree rock group who I had seen 2 years ago at the upstairs room of The Mash Tun at Norwich Saturday night during Norwich Sound and Vision 2015. I wish to point out that thank you very much, I had seen this band before nearly everyone in Austin, proclaiming back then “1) I was supposed to be in Norwich to see this band, and 2) they’re going to do very, very well.” Boom.

SuperGlu, Latitue 30, Monday 13 March 2017

I don’t consider myself an expert on alt-rock, because it’s hard to class. What is alt-rockand what isn’t? And let’s be honest, sometimes you just don’t know what will float with music fans and what won’t, which ultimately is the litmus test. During a week in Austin that saw surprise (or maybe not?) performances by world-famous American bands Jimmy Eat World, Spoon and Weezer, SuperGlu held their own against them, suggesting from the climactic last notes of ‘Diving Bell’ that it would not be long before they would be joining their ranks in popular music history.

SuperGlu, Latitude 30, Monday 13 March 2017, 2

Frontman Ben Brown wore a University of Texas-Austin t-shirt and shouted the locals’ cry for “Longhorns!” to get the crowd riled up. Not surprisingly, this went over extremely well with the already inebriated and up for it Texans, not to mention a man who argued with Brown over which was the smallest town in England, his or Manningtree. (I’m still unclear who won.) The secrets to SuperGlu’s success? Being good friends and keeping things fun, which come across in spades in their self-described ‘dork pop’ music and live performance. While this might not be at the level of the Sex Pistols at the Lesser Free Trade Hall in Manchester in 1976, something tells me this is going to be one of those “were you there?” moments in rock. The photo below from my phone is intended to document the crazy that was happening that night. To listen in on my interview with the band in Austin, go here.

SuperGlu, Latitude 30, Monday 13 March 2017

Feeling like a letdown after SuperGlu was London-based Doe, compared frequently to Sleater-Kinney for their female-led DIY rock aesthetic. I give pink-haired lead singer and guitarist Nicola Leel massive props for her shouty loud, abrasive vocal delivery on tracks like ‘Last Ditch’, as she never once let up during their half-hour set, and the band gave it their all. The guitars were loud and scuzzy and indeed, the comparisons to classic ‘90s rock and noise pop make sense. It was just hard for me to pick out the melodies or find anything that stood out as particularly special.

Doe, Latitude 30, Monday 13 March 2017

From Doe, Croydon’s Jamie Isaac was a breath of fresh air, cutting through the fuzz with a dramatically different point of view. Some have compared him to wildly popular piano-player, production head and fellow Londoner James Blake, but that’s just lazy journalism. Isaac’s silky smooth tones envelop you like nothing else, grabbing you just as much as the darkly beautiful notes of his jazz-infused piano lines. To be fair, his music is less obvious, requiring more commitment by the listener to truly ‘get’ where he was going with his electronic leanings, and I sensed that people who had been there since SuperGlu’s set were less than enthralled. Give his ‘Couch Baby (Revisited)’ album (which includes ‘Find the Words’) a spin on your favourite streaming service to check him out.

Jamie Isaac, Latitude 30, Monday 13 March 2017

I had expected Blaenavon to come next in the lineup, but I was surprised when a woman came onstage. Hrm, I thought, they don’t have a girl in their band, do they? For the record, they don’t. Manchester’s False Advertising, led by Jen Hingley, filled in for the Liphook, East Hampshire natives who weren’t able to get out to Austin that early in the week. Their loss was False Advertising’s gain: the incredible opportunity to showcase the first official night of SXSW Music at the British Music Embassy.

False Advertising, Latitude 30, Monday 13 March 2017

The energy in the ratcheted back up as they pounded out ‘Wasted Away’ and ‘Scars’ as highlights. They’ve got an interesting dynamic in that drummer Chris Warr also sings, and he and Hingley swapped instruments and positions like it was no big deal. The other obvious comment about False Advertising is that they have a lot of hair. It’s a good thing none of them needed to look down at their guitars, because they wouldn’t have seen the strings anyway. Carrie joined me shortly after False Advertising started, and I’ll let her fill you in on Muncie Girls’ closing set of the night.

Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Leave Your Response

* Name, Email, Comment are Required
 
 
 

About Us

There Goes The Fear is where we tell you about the latest music, gigs, and tours we love and think you should too.

We love music that has its heart on its sleeve, tells a story, swims around our head all day or makes us dance like no-one's watching.

TGTF is edited by Mary Chang, who is based in Washington, DC. It began as a UK music blog by Phil Singer in 2005.

Learn more about us through here.

RSS Feed   RSS Feed  

Our Privacy Policy