Heartless Bastards bring working class Midwestern Blues to SXSW

1 04 2009

We’re still rolling out coverage from our week in Austin, TX. We had the pleasure of hanging with Heartless Bastards front-woman Erika Wennerstrom in Austin. Erika’s an Austin, TX native these days, but the band started with blue-collar Ohio roots (like former labelmates The Black Keys). Erika chats about the newest album “The Mountain” and raiding the closets at Fat Possum Records.





Modern Skirts help bring the 40 Watt to Austin

1 04 2009

Jay Gulley of Modern Skirts spent some quality moments with Palestra.net at SXSW. We talked about Mike Mills and Dave Lowery producing tracks on their latest album, and how the band has developed a working democracy.





Will Sergeant & Echo still at it

21 03 2009

Brian Phillips had the pleasure of chatting with founding Bunnymen Will Sergeant before the band took the stage at Stubb’s BBQ in Austin Friday night.





Wavves’ Nathan Williams drunkenly beats a piñata @ SXSW, 3/20

21 03 2009

So everyone on the planet has heard of Wavves by now, right? *Insert eye roll* Nathan Williams, alias WAVVES, has been a buzz child within the blogosphere for the past several months. He’s an overnight superstar in the underground indie world, having only played his first show on Halloween 2008, according to Spin Magazine.


photo by Jillian Mapes

I should not have been surprised by Wavves’ behavior because of his instant fame, but somehow I was. The San Diego lo-fi surf rocker, who seems to have a Kurt Cobain complex, took the stage at the French Legation Museum on Thursday afternoon two and a half hours late, demanded that his posse bring him more whiskey and fumbled with the chord progressions in his own songs. Wavves delved into his biggest track, “So Bored,” second, and I realized how appropriate a song title it is, given my mood at the time. Seriously, it was snooze-ville, mostly because it was Wavves sans-drummer, which is typically Williams’ live style. Wavves sounds much better on his full-length, titled Wavvvess, which he told me in a post-show interview was recorded on Garage Band by himself because he’s a “musical control freak.”

After playing three tracks, Williams looked up and drunkenly asked if he had time for one more. He had played three two-minute songs and asked if he had time for one more. Are you serious?, I thought. He begrudgingly made his way through a new track. Seriously, why is the indie rock community embracing such pretentious figures?


photo by Jillian Mapes

As surprising as his performance was, it was just the tip of the iceberg. Following the show, Wavves made his way down to the valley at the French Legation Museum where a hand-made piñata was waiting. A clearly intoxicated Wavves, who was chasing his whiskey with a can of Sprite, was blindfolded (much to his dismay) and started whacking away. He beat that thing to death and threw down the murder weapon — an orange stick. Bad things happen when people give drunk hipsters wooden objects for violent purposes, and that’s all I can say about that.

So then Palestra Music Department producer Nick Jones and I waited…and waited for Wavves to ready himself for our interview. We eventually sat down with him in an ice cream truck, during which the drunken 22-year-old blew cigarette smoke into the camera and commented on his favorite “Seinfeld” episode. We were ecstatic with the outrageous results, to say the least. Keep an eye out for our on-camera with Wavves coming soon — you will not be disappointed by the hijinks. — Jillian Mapes





Tori Amos Talks “Abnormally Attracted to Sin”

20 03 2009

Tori Amos’ 10th proper release “Abnormally Attracted to Sin” is due in stores May 19th. She was kind enough to chat with us about the new album here in Austin during SXSW 2009.





Annie Clark Talks New St. Vincent Record

20 03 2009

We chatted up Annie Clark about playing some tunes from her new record “Actor” at SXSW 2009. Click the picture to watch our interview.





Video: Jane’s Addiction @ SXSW09 Playboy Party

20 03 2009

Could you have guessed that Jane’s Addiction would be playing a Playboy party at SXSW 2009? Yeah, me either. Check this clip of Perry and the guys performing “Been Caught Stealing”.


photo by James Trevenen, Playboy


photo by Ellei J Shadowscene


photo by Ellei J Shadowscene