Every day of SXSW Music, Carter and Robin are going to share their schedules with each other and provide their insights to one another on their choices. Enjoy this unfiltered commentary.
Robin: Pyrrhon is playing at the Dirty Dog at 8.
Robin: I always see a lot of metal bands during SX and – okay, the face you’re making is amazing. You don’t look just like you don’t like this band, you look like you’re going to be ill. Like someone is poking you with a stick right now.
Carter: Listen, you know that I have to listen to everything you send me for this stuff. I think that you sometimes use this as an excuse to torture me.
Robin: I want to see this. I’m telling you, I see a lot of metal during SX. I don’t own a lot of metal records, but there’s a lot of badass live bands coming into town, so I always see a lot of metal. This band has badass drumming, there’s all these cool guitar moves you can hear that’ll be cool to see. Listen to these guitars, they sound sort of seasick.
Carter: Yeah, and it’s making me seasick. I mean, if that’s what they were going for, then kudos to them.
Robin: All right. I don’t have much to tell you about Liquor Store, over at Hotel Vegas at 9. A guy I know is a big fan of them, and he really likes this record Yeah Buddy. This is the album cover.
Carter: Hahahaha. That’s awesome.
Robin: What do you think, would you go see them?
Carter: Judging by the cover, yeah.
Robin: Yeah buddy. So, a bit of a hike over to Hotel Vegas, but while you’re over there, you can go to the Grackle at 9:40 and see New China, my favorite new band in Austin. They have this EP online called Buffet.
Carter: So this is an Austin band that you’re actually in favor of.
Carter: One of the tags on bandcamp is “Interstellar fuck music?”
Robin: I really like the guitar playing, and Katy, who is the frontperson, was pretty awkward at first, but she’s really figured out what to do. What do you think?
Carter: I mean, it doesn’t immediately offend me. But it’s not something I’m excited to check out.
Robin: Let’s put them away and listen to “Joel’s Retarded” by Reptiles, playing at 10 back west at B.D. Riley’s.
Robin: There are things I like about this song, that I might not find in their other songs.
Carter: Like what?
Robin: Like the chorus.
Carter: “Joel’s retarded, he’s retarded?”
Robin: Yes. And that it’s sung with excessive sincerity, for what it is.
Carter: It is kind of funny, the way they deliver it. Yeah, it’s got a kind of bluesy groove to it, but it doesn’t really go anywhere and the lyrics are stupid.
Carter: I just don’t see this engaging me very well.
Robin: Let’s now listen to the first few seconds of “Dig” by Nothing. They’re playing at 11 back at the Dirty Dog. I was on the fence about this when we discussed it on the podcast, and given the opportunity to see them live, I’d take it. The chorus of this song has such a great hook.
Carter: Oh, I remember this. Since we did the podcast with these guys, I’ve continued to see more and more from them in the music press. I’m kind of proud – like, “Hey, that’s one of our bands.”
Robin: Even though we disowned them.
Carter: Was it that harsh?
Robin: I mean, we gave them the worst rating we could possibly give.
Carter: Memory’s a funny thing, Robin. See, this is something I would be more amenable to seeing, than “Joel’s Retarded.”
Robin: I’d be really interested to see if the drummer is as weak as he sounds on this track, or if the studio just did him wrong.
Carter: Seems like it’d be a chill show. This is the first band you’ve brought here that I’d actually see with you.
Robin: Let’s listen to Christian Mistress now; they’ve got the midnight spot at the Dirty Dog.
Carter: This is another Relapse band? That’s three now, right?
Robin: Well, they have the showcase at the Dirty Dog.
Carter: I’m not arguing, I’m just saying. What is NWOBHM?
Robin: New Wave of British Heavy Metal. Like, Judas Priest. So this band isn’t revolutionary, but they seem like a good, kinda classic rock band with some good riffs, so I’d go see them.
Carter: It’s making me think of a more badass version of Heart. Like, full-throated female frontwoman over some solid riffs.
Robin: And a red-breasted, bird-guitarist.
Robin: Let’s listen to Windhand.
Carter: I was real excited when the drums came in, because I thought it was adding a different rhythm to the song, but then it turns out that was just a fill, and now the song is back in fairly standard, straightforward sludge.
Robin: You wish they would weird it up, don’t you.
Carter: I wish they would weird it up.
Robin: “Standard, straightforward sludge.” Hahaha.
Carter: This is just – this is like the darkest moments of Soundgarden.
Robin: You mean when Ben Shepherd was homeless, or are you talking about when Chris Cornell tried to top the charts by collaborating with Timbaland?
Carter: I don’t mean emotionally dark.
Robin: Don’t you hate when musicians you like, who are obviously talented, lose any sense of taste?
Carter: Yes. It’s sad. But this guitar tone, I can’t get past it. It’s like a crappy, ’90s Seattle retread.
Robin: No, it’s not like that at all.
Carter: It just reminds me of crappy grunge.
Robin: This is a pretty well-recorded, hi-fi-sounding distorted guitar.
Carter: This is not my favorite right here.
Carter: I’m going to hop around, but I have a few things that I want to make sure I hit. First is Dënver, at the ND at 8pm.
Robin: I find myself enjoying the tennis sounds.
Carter: Yeah, I like the tennis sounds. Which is funny because I have compared them to the band Tennis before.
Robin: Is this a drum machine?
Carter: I don’t know. I know that they are a duo. So one of my goals for this SX is that I really want to check out international bands, because I feel like they won’t be coming back anytime soon. This band is a duo from Chile that has been really big in the indie pop scene down there.
Robin: This riff isn’t too bad, but I think this would be pretty boring live.
Carter: They’re one of the leading lights of the Chilean indie pop movement, that’s gaining steam right now. And I love stuff that’s as sunny as this.
Robin: At SX, you often have these international bands playing showcases that are heavily marketed by their country, or their country has some sort of organization like the French Music Embassy. But generally speaking, the bands that the French Music Embassy or whichever one it is is picking, are bands that I have no interest in. I’m sure there are underground bands in these countries I would enjoy, but they’re never the ones that are being picked for these showcases.
Carter: Yeah. I mean, the government wants it to be bands they’re proud of.
Robin: Right. We tried to get Andrew W.K. as a cultural ambassador, and that was rejected.
Carter: Right. But yeah, Dënver is one of the bands I’m really excited about checking out.
Robin: So next, you’re going to the Austin Music Awards. Why are you going to that?
Carter: I’m really excited for that because it’s one of the things that shapes the conversation for local music, for better or worse, over the rest of the year. You know, when The Bright Light Social Hour swept, then suddenly they were the “it band,” then the next year Quiet Company swept and they were the “it band.” So I imagine that some other band is going to sweep this year.
Robin: You realize you could see Liquor Store, New China, Reptiles, Nothing, and Christian Mistress in the time that you’ll spend at the Austin Music Awards.
Carter: Well, it’ll probably be over by 11.
Robin: You know, I shouldn’t act like a brat about it because I saw David Yow sing “Wheelchair Epidemic” with the Dicks one year at the Austin Music Awards. So I shouldn’t act like I totally don’t care, because that was awesome.
Carter: Yeah, it’ll be a fun time, I think, and I’ll get to find out who all the winners are. But then, I imagine I’ll wander around for a little bit, and everything will be fine as long as I end up seeing French Horn Rebellion.
Robin: Okay, this is fucking terrible.
Robin: It sounds like a Vampire Weekend CD is skipping.
Carter: Hahaha. I can see that. But these guys – I like the indie funk sound to it.
Robin: Oh, God. I can’t imagine saying a sentence like what you just said. Why do you want there to be an indie funk sound?
Carter: Well it’s not – it’s not like, “funk” funk, but this is going to be a really energetic live show, fun to see – what are you laughing at me about?
Robin: This music is so bad.
Carter: Whatever. I like it. I think it’s going to be a fun show.
Pyrrhon @ Dirty Dog - 8pm
Denver @ The North Door - 8pm - Official
Liquor Store @ Hotel Vegas - 9pm
New China @ The Grackle - 9:40pm
Reptiles @ B.D. Riley’s - 10pm
Nothing @ Dirty Dog - 11pm
Christian Mistress @ Dirty Dog - Midnight
Windhand @ Dirty Dog - 1am
French Horn Rebellion @ The Majestic - 1am - Official
-Carter Delloro and Robin Sinhababu