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(SXSW 2015 flavoured!) Quickfire Questions #94: Demi Louise

 
By on Tuesday, 17th March 2015 at 1:00 pm
 

It’s here, it’s here! The music portion of SXSW 2015 starts today! Just as we did for SXSW 2014 last year, we’ll be running a special version of the TGTF Quickfire Questions, served up SXSW style with an extra couple of questions to get inside bands’ and artists’ heads so they’ll tell us what they really think of the event. This will likely be the fifteenth and last one of the these this year and that’s okay, because we’re ending the campaign on a high note.

Sometimes you just get a good feeling about someone, even before you met them. And that’s exactly how I feel about Demi Louise after talking to her on social media and now even more so, now that I learn that there’s only one degree of friend separation between us now! Have a read about the surprising degree she has and why we’ll be likely be ringing her to make us some healthy snacks this week. If her name sounds familiar, she has showcased previously at last year’s Liverpool Sound City.

What are you most looking forward to doing while you’re in Austin?
To be honest whenever I travel I tend to stay away from the mega touristy things. A lot of the time I just wander around and try and spend time there as though I live there. Walk into places that seem energetic and walk down streets and just get lost (as long as I have my phone, hahah) I think that’s why I like Uber so much. I can just call it when I’m done and I don’t need to know where I am haha.
But obviously music is the reason im going to SXSW and for me just the lineup of people I’m involved with is phenomenal so I can’t wait to just explore.

Of the bands who have already been announced, do you have any that are must-sees on your schedule? If yes, who are they and why?
Oh yess I do. One of my good friends Josh Savage is playing and I can’t wait to catch up with him. Orla Gartland is also playing and can’t wait to see her.

J.P. Cooper has been one of my favorite acts for probably the past year since I discovered him online and I haven’t yet seen him live so that will just be lush.

Laura Marling (for obvious reasons that she’s amazing).

Name something you’re packing in your suitcase that we might find unusual. (You are welcome to elaborate.)
Haha uhmmm, I always take a powerboard with me so that I only need to buy one travel plug converter.
and I take my George Foreman Mix and Go because its hard to find healthy food quickly, so I can just buy loads of fruit when I get there and make smoothies for breakfast everyday before running to the conference (is that weird?) [No, you’re just extremely healthy! I hope you’re not veggie because you’re going to be seeing BBQ everywhere in Austin… – Ed.]

If we happen to run into you in a bar, we’d like to buy you a drink. What is your tipple of choice?
Merlot. It kind of makes me seem sophisticated but I don’t care haha.

What have you heard about the festival? Are you excited / anxious / scared / etc. and why?
I have heard that you should not go into it with any expectations EXCEPT that it will probably be the most insane and busy week of your life, haha, I’m so, so excited, this is my 6th music conference in the past year and I’ve also been told to not expect it to be anything like the others haha. So I guess that is a little scary and there’s always anxiety in a new place that you wont get to a show on time but I try and run 2 hours early to most things so then I can just exhale and relax haha, so I’m not too worried.

Now, let’s get into our usual list of Quickfire Questions…

What song is your earliest musical memory?
‘Boom Boom’ by the Outhere Brothers, and ‘Song 2’ by Blur.

What was your favourite song as a child?
‘Boom Boom’ by the Outhere Brothers, haha, I used to sing it for HOURS and make up snazzy dance routines. We have me on video doing it over.. and over.. and over.. again. I was all of 3 years old.

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WqHQ_wWbG9Y[/youtube]

What song makes you laugh?
There’s a song by John Williamson called ‘Big Bad Bush Ranger’ ‘and for some reason I can never sing it without laughing. We travelled around Australia and lived in a caravan when I was younger and that was one of our roadtrip songs and it always made me laugh for some reason.

What song makes you cry?
I cry when I sing ‘All I Want’ by Kodaline sometimes. ‘Fix You’ by Coldplay. And ‘The Pieces Don’t Fit Anymore’ by James Morrison was my crying song when I was younger, it’s such a fist-clenching belter. Haha.

What song reminds you of the first time you fell in love? (It’s up to you if you want this to be sweet, naughty, etc.)
‘Turn Your Lights Down Low’ – Bob Marley and Lauryn Hill. That was my first love and is my lay in bed all day song. The Colbie Caillat version is good as well.

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VitKvID-uvY[/youtube]

What song makes you think of being upset / angry? (Example: maybe you heard it when you were angry with someone and it’s still with you, and/or something that calms you down when you’re upset, etc.)
‘Ordinary People’ by John Legend – haha I hate that it makes me angry because I actually love the song. But an ex used to sing it to me all the time, especially the first verse, and he actually sounded really good haha and now it just annoys me.

Which song (any song written in the last century / 100 years or so) do you wish you’d written yourself?
‘Make You Feel My Love’ by Bob Dylan. I love every cover of the song and I think its just a timeless sentiment and will be a song that never fades. Geez I wish I wrote it. Haha.

Who is your favourite writer? (This can be a songwriter or ANY kind of writer.)
I can’t narrow it down to one. My favorite writers are from a few different eras, but I love Oscar Wilde as a writer, I love Bob Dylan, but then I love modern people like Eminem for his story telling, and people like Ed Sheeran for his relaxed relatable writing style. I love Tom Odell too as a songwriter.

If you hadn’t become a singer/musician/songwriter/etc., what job do you think you’d be doing right now?
I actually have a degree in Clinical Exercise Science that I finished in 2013, so I can go on to become an exercise physiologist – so I would say something in that area, haha. I love nutrition and health science. [The smoothies make sense now! – Ed.] If I was dedicated enough to study I would love to be a surgeon or a doctor. Or a wedding planner. Haha.

If God said you were allowed to bring only one album with you to Heaven, which would it be and why? (Sorry, but double albums do not count.)
I’m really bad at this one answer thing, haha. Maybe The Fault in Our Stars soundtrack? That movie had amazing music in it. Such a great balance of dance and soft and everything in between. And some of my favourite songs, haha.

Many thanks to the lovely Demi for answering our questions!

 

(SXSW 2015 flavoured!) MP3 of the Day #874: The People the Poet

 
By on Tuesday, 17th March 2015 at 10:00 am
 

South Wales band The People The Poet will be making their Austin live debut tonight as the opening band at Music Wales’ showcase at 8 PM at Latitude 30, the British Music Embassy’s home at SXSW 2015. To celebrate the momentous occasion, why not treat yourself to a free download to the band’s acoustic cover of fellow Welshmen and current indie rock darlings of the moment Catfish and the Bottlemen‘s ‘Hourglass’? Listen to the track and grab it for your very own below. (Incidentally, Catfish and the Bottlemen are also on tonight at 12 AM at the same venue, and it’s so nice when everything comes round full circle, isn’t it?)

My SXSW preview / Bands to Watch on the band is right this way, with their frontman Leon answering the SXSW 2015 flavoured Quickfire Questions here.

 

(SXSW 2015 flavoured!) Video of the Moment #1764: Meltybrains?

 
By on Monday, 16th March 2015 at 6:00 pm
 

Header photo by Eve North

SXSW 2015 showcasing artists Meltybrains? (profiled as part of the TGTF Guide to SXSW 2015’s roundup of Irish and Northern Irish artists playing in Austin this week) have just released a new video for their track ‘Donegal’, which is—coincidentally?—available for purchase on limited edition 12” white vinyl as well as digital download.

We at TGTF look forward to catching Meltybrains? next week in Austin including their appearances at the Music from Ireland showcase Wednesday night the 18th of March at Maggie Mae’s Gibson Room and the full Irish breakfast at B.D. Riley’s Irish pub on Friday the 20th of March; stay tuned for further coverage.

[youtube]https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yKUXHGvRV3Q[/youtube]

 

(SXSW 2015 flavoured!) Album Stream: Courtney Barnett – Sometimes I Sit and Think, and Sometimes I Just Sit

 
By on Monday, 16th March 2015 at 3:00 pm
 

So let’s say you’re a fancier of Melbournian Courtney Barnett‘s lo-fi slacker rock and you’ve been gutted for weeks knowing you couldn’t see her play in Austin this week as a showcasing artist at SXSW 2015. Fret no more, because today we’ve got something everyone, no matter where you are in the world at this moment, can enjoy. The lovely woman has just released today a full album stream of her upcoming debut album ‘Sometimes I Sit and Think, and Sometimes I Just Sit’, which sees its official release next Monday, the 23rd of March, on House Anxiety / Marathon Artists. Listen to the new LP a week early in full below.

All our past coverage on Ms. Barnett is right this way. One of her high profile appearances this week in Austin is Thursday night as part of the star-studded inaugural FLOODFest at Cedar Street Courtyard.

 

(SXSW 2015 flavoured!) Live Review: The Districts with Pine Barons at Club Congress, Tucson, AZ – 11th March 2015

 
By on Monday, 16th March 2015 at 2:00 pm
 

Late winter and early spring are a busy time for music in the Tucson and Phoenix area. The weather is perfect this time of year for visiting from out of town and escaping the chill (or in some cases, the deep freeze) of winter. And because we are located just eight hours down the road along Interstate 10 from big venues in Los Angeles and San Diego, Phoenix and Tucson are excellent stopping points for bands heading from West Coast tour dates to showcases at the SXSW Music Festival in Austin, TX. Case in point, several Austin-bound bands are on the lineup for the VivaPHX festival in Phoenix this Saturday night, including Best Coast, Geographer, 2:54, The Twilight Sad, and Honeyblood.

Tucson’s own Club Congress recently played host to SXSW 2015 showcasing bands The Dodos and Springtime Carnivore, and last Wednesday night featured two more acts on their way to Austin, Pine Barons and The Districts. These two bands are geographic neighbors, Pine Barons hailing from southern New Jersey (their name is a play on the Pine Barrens area) and The Districts now living in nearby Philadelphia. They played hole-in-the-wall Phoenix venue Last Exit Live the night before this show, and presumably found a similar dive bar vibe at Club Congress. Both bands played the kind of gritty, garage-flavoured show that will be perfect for small venue showcases at SXSW, taking the opportunity to show off their technical chops to the small but enthusiastic crowd, which included the proud grandparents of The Districts’ frontman Rob Grote.

Pine Barons at Club Congress 11 Mar 2015

The Districts’ tour mates Pine Barons are an independent band who originally distributed their self-titled debut album on their Bandcamp. Pine Barons bill themselves as a “psych-folk-harmonious-rock-and-roll band” whose influences include classic rock, folk, jazz and punk. Those influences were demonstrated most clearly in the extended instrumental sections of their songs, which featured scorching guitar riffs and wildly flailing drums. Unfortunately, their set seemed to lack focus, and on this night Pine Barons didn’t manage to display any of the charm or inventive instrumentation found in the video for their song ‘Chamber Choir’.

[youtube]https://youtu.be/35205yQ3YQs[/youtube]

The Districts gave a more polished and experienced performance than their opening act, their relaxed stage presence belying their youthful age. Signed while still in high school to record label Fat Possum, The Districts made their presence known at SXSW 2014 on the strength of their self-titled debut EP. For this show, The Districts mingled songs from that EP with tracks from their recently released album ‘A Flourish and a Spoil’, reviewed by editor Mary here.

New album tracks ‘Chlorine’ and ‘Hounds’ opened the headline set on a lively note, but the momentum lagged a little bit through some of the older songs. With long, drawn out instrumental intros and very little banter between songs, I found it difficult to stay engaged, and the band members’ frenetic energy translated into a regrettable tendency to turn their backs to the audience while playing.

The Districts at Club Congress 11 March 2015

For his part, Grote used the small stage at Club Congress to his advantage, at one point perching on the drum ledge and jumping back down into the spotlight. But the lazy, growling drawl of his vocal delivery didn’t translate well through the sound system at Club Congress, which instead favoured the heavily distorted guitars. The vocals were more centered in quieter track ‘Funeral Beds’, where Grote’s harmonica added a welcome touch of warmth to the sound. Foregoing an encore on this Wednesday night, the band still ended the show on a high note with the new album’s lead single ‘4th and Roebling’ and fan favourite ‘Young Blood’.

The Districts at Club Congress 11 March 2015

Pine Barons are scheduled to play Rachael Ray’s Feedback House showcase at SXSW on Thursday the 19th of March at Stubb’s BBQ. The Districts’ new album ‘A Flourish and a Spoil’ is out now on Fat Possum Records. After their scheduled appearances at this year’s SXSW including Thursday night the 19th of March at the Parish, the band will tour the UK and Ireland in April and May. Previous TGTF coverage of The Districts is right this way.

 

(SXSW 2015 flavoured!) Quickfire Questions #93: Jake Bonta of Bad Veins

 
By on Monday, 16th March 2015 at 1:00 pm
 

It’s this week, people! The music portion of SXSW 2015 officially kicks off tomorrow! Just as we did for SXSW 2014 last year, we’ll be running a special version of the TGTF Quickfire Questions, served up SXSW style with an extra couple of questions to get inside bands’ and artists’ heads so they’ll tell us what they really think of the event. We’re up to our fourteenth interviewee for this campaign, and this time round we’ve got drummer Jake Bonta of Cincinnati duo Bad Veins stepping up to the plate. It hadn’t occurred to me how important hockey is to the good people of Ohio (or perhaps the male population there) and Jake tells us of his fond memories of the sport, as well as the importance of a ’70s hard rock powerhouse to his musical background. Read on…

What are you most looking forward to doing while you’re in Austin?
Definitely the warmth. It’s been so ridiculously cold here in Southern Ohio for the past
few months, and we’re super ready to soak up the beautiful sunshine and eat some killer food.

Of the bands who have already been announced, do you have any that are must-sees
on your schedule? If yes, who are they and why?

I do actually. I’m really into hip-hop, and being a drummer I really dig the production behind the ‘beats’ and the amount of attention that they put into them. Anyways, here’s my list so far: Kevin Gates, Earl Sweatshirt, Rae Sremmurd, 2 Chainz, BØRNS, The Ting Tings, Best Coast, Royal Teeth, and I’m sure there will be more once we get there.

Name something you’re packing in your suitcase that we might find unusual. (You are
welcome to elaborate.)

I have a medal that my brother received for winning a hockey tournament he was in. I’ve always wanted him to come out on the road with me and see what it’s like to do what I do. He’s a huge inspiration of mine. Hockey has always been a hugh part of our lives, and an even bigger part of his. Then he moved halfway across the country to play Junior A hockey, which I’m super proud of him for. So now I carry this medal in my suitcase around the country as a way of bringing him with me.

If we happen to run into you in a bar, we’d like to buy you a drink. What is your tipple of
choice?

I’ve been really digging gin and tonics lately.

What advice would you give other bands who have never played at SXSW before?
Don’t put too much stress/focus on one show. Also, try to have a good time and be nice to everyone you come into contact with, even if you think they aren’t ‘important’. I feel like that’s something you should always do, not just at SXSW.

Our usual list of Quickfire Questions:

What song is your earliest musical memory?
My earliest musical memory would have to be the moment I was at my first-ever professional hockey game with my parents, and the home team scored a goal. The entire crowd stood up, yelling as loud as they possibly could, and this song came on. It was ‘Rock and Roll Pt. 2’ by Gary Glitter. That song forever changed my life. I went home that night and found that my dad had the song on vinyl. I stayed up super late trying to emulate that same drum beat that moved so many people at the hockey game. That night was the first time I ever played with intention. I was 9 years old.

[youtube]https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Nras3c8r45k[/youtube]

What was your favourite song as a child?
Another pretty important song to me as a child was ‘D’yer Mak’er’ by Led Zeppelin. It was the first song that my dad and I played together in the same garage that Bad Veins had our first few practices in.

[youtube]https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Qgucqyr-H7M[/youtube]

What song makes you laugh?
‘Lifestyle’ by Rich Gang. There’s a certain line in the first verse that gets me every time I hear it. I do like the song. It just sounds funny to me.

What song makes you cry?
‘Hurt’ by Johnny Cash. Such a bone chilling song.

What song reminds you of the first time you fell in love? (It’s up to you if you want
this to be sweet, naughty, etc.)

‘While The Fire Was Out’ by Brighten.

What song makes you think of being upset / angry? (Example: maybe you heard it
when you were angry with someone and it’s still with you, and/or something that calms you
down when you’re upset, etc.)

It’s actually an entire album. It’s called ‘Illuminate’ by the band Lydia. I remember listening to this record non-stop after I was seriously heartbroken by a girl I was talking to at the
time. Oh the memories.

[youtube]https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eWk1IJyfccg[/youtube]

Which song (any song written in the last century / 100 years or so) do you wish you’d
written yourself?

‘Hallelujah’ by Leonard Cohen. That song is so clever and it’s arguably one of the most popular songs of the last century. So many people have covered it, and it’s always been an important song to me.

Who is your favourite writer? (This can be a songwriter or ANY kind of writer.)
Stephen King has always been a writer that I’ve enjoyed. I remember his book ‘IT’ was one of the first books I started reading at like 12 years old. It scared the crap out of me.

If you hadn’t become a singer/musician/songwriter/etc., what job do you think you’d
be doing right now?

I’d most likely be a tattoo artist. I love tattoos a lot, and I’ve actually started painting tattoo flash recently. It’s so much fun.

If God said you were allowed to bring only one album with you to Heaven, which
would it be and why? (Sorry, but double albums do not count.)

‘Led Zeppelin II’. Such an influential and important album to me. [You and me both, brother – Ed.]

Many thanks to Jake for answering our questions and Courtney for arranging this for us. Catch Bad Veins at their official SXSW 2015 showcase Saturday the 21st of March at 10 PM at Bar 96.

 
 
 

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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. She is joined by writers in England, America and Ireland. It began as a UK music blog by Phil Singer in 2005.

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