SXSW Coverage: Jonathan Vela Days 3 and 4

Friday and Saturday were a drunken blur of bike riding, music, and just straight drunkenness.

It’s already Monday so I’m going to try to squeeze Friday and Saturday in one big entry.
Friday started off very late because we stayed up too late on Thursday night. We rode over to a party hosted by Death & Taxes and Nudie Jeans. Although a lot of people playing the show, the line up ended up being pretty sick. First up was a LA electronic pop act Super Humanoids. I was still getting a feel for the party and everything while they were playing. I didn’t listen too closely but they did make me stop and take note of who they were. They were very good performers and very fun to listen to.
Next up was a Canadian trio called Doldrums. Their performance was really fun because they used a lot of electronic and live percussion elements. The vocals contributed from all three members were spot on. I honestly can’t come up with a ridiculous metaphor for them. Just listen to them. Tell me what you think when you see me!
The show continued on with Brooklyn’s North Highlands & Sean Bones performing one right after another.  North Highlands was pretty good straight forward indie pop. Lead singer Brenda Malvini’s voice is absolutely infectious. Sean Bones did some solid work on an acoustic guitar. I particularly enjoyed some of the reggae elements he wrote into a lot of his songs.
Then it was time for the headliner Dan Deacon. If you have never been to a Dan Deacon show find time this year and go to one. I can tell with almost absolute certainty that you will have fun regardless of any kind of music you’re into. His very loud set was a wonderful selection off of his debut album and his second LP “Bromst.” The set was complete with hilarious jokes, games, and even a full crowd dance off. 
That night we headed down to the 21st st. Co-Op of Austin to catch a house party and show. We walked in just as Caddywhompus from Louisiana was just beginning their set. If you like the 90’s, 90’s emo, animal collective, reverberated vocals, 2 man bands, or any one of those elements, then please check out Caddywhompus. I think they were my personal favorite of the entire festival. They just had a really amazing sound, a good vibe with the crowd, and they were extremely congenial.
We then discovered the second stage at the co-op. It was this packed room where three bands Best Fwends, Netherfriends, Rich Aucoin played intertwined sets by playing one song right after another. It was fun but the room was so hot, sweaty and smelled bad. BUT they did throw out a giant play parachute over the crowd and I got to see Best Fwends; who are one of my favorite acts from Austin.
Eventually, the extremely over capacity crowd at the co-op became too much for us. We got on our bikes and rode home after another successful day!

Saturday ended up being a great day to end our experience at the festival. We started off at the Volcom party with free beer! I saw Brooklyn trio Dirty Fences play for a second time and they only got better. Florida/Georgia punk outfit Torche took the stage after them. After looking at their Facebook, I must admit I didn’t know how big they actually were. They put on an energy charged St Paddy’s show for everyone at the bar.

Afterwards we hopped on the ole bikes and rode over to the Thrasher party. Mistah F.A.B. was finishing up his set as we walked in. It should be noted that he did free style for like 10 minutes after the music actually ended. It was incredible! After him, Los Angeles rap prodigy (or whatever you want to call it) Kreashawn took the stage. I’ll admit that I’m a skeptic of her talent; but damn she puts on a good show!

Theopholis London was up next. I’ve listened to his music before and I couldn’t really get into it. His egotistical antics and performance solidified those feelings for me. A lot of people like him, his music just isn’t for me.

Finally, it was time for the Chicago duo The Cool Kids to perform. I’ve been such a huge fan of them since they put out “The Bake Sale EP” I have every word of that record memorized! The performance ended up being kind of a let down for me. They recently released their long-awaited LP “When Fish Ride Bicycles” and I couldn’t get into to it. They’ve gone a new or more “mature” direction with their sound. I understand that the listener can’t make their acts remain the same people on every record. The new stuff just isn’t for me. Needless to say, the set only had two songs from “The Bake Sale” EP. However I danced and sang as hard as I could those to songs!

And that, ladies and gentlemen, is where my adventure ends. We had plans to go see Crystal Antlers at a party later that night but we got too wild and just sat in a park for the rest of the night. I had a wonderful time with two of my best friends. I strongly encourage anyone who considers themselves a music lover to check this festival out next year. It’s an amazing time for hear some of your favorites and discover some new tunes. Until next time!

I owe a big thanks to Mr. Mooney and New Slang for letting me do this! 


Here are the websites to every band I saw on the trip. Check them out! 

Tribes –
Foxy Shazam –
Old Monk –
El Ten Eleven –
Seasons –
Tycho –
Yellow Ostrich –
The Jealous Sound –
This Will Destroy You –
Superhumanoids –
The Doldrums –
North Highlands –
Sean Bones –
Dan Deacon –
Torche –
Mistah F.A.B. –
Kreayshawn –
Theopholis London –
The Cool Kids –

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