From March 10th to March 25th, Frank is visiting the good old US of A. First a 6 day trip to Portland, to visit ZXZW artist Khris Soden. After that, Frank is visiting the SXSW festival in Austin, Texas. He will try and write a blogpost a day on his whereabouts.
Got up this morning with a really dry throat. Goddamn Lone-star is killing me. Me and my friends Johan, Jenno and Gijs decided to ride into town already, to take care of tickets for the Roky ERickson Pshychedelic Ice Cream Party at Threatgill’s. Johan and me were ultra siked to see him, so we wouldn’t want to miss out on anything. Roky was playing with Okkervil River as a backing band that afternoon. Should be really cool, since I like Okkervil River too. We picked up the tickets and walked into town for some lunch.
We had burgers and free beer at Jackalopes. The streets were filled with festival people again. This city is a constant party during SXSW. After excellent burgers, the Birdman and me went to Threatgill;s again. The place was perfect to see Roky. A big garden filled with chairs, little seats, and trees to keep it shady. We had some excellent frozen margarita’s during the support act, the Heartless Bastards. They were pretty cool. I stumbled into Suzy Bravo there too, an old friend who I met during my last stay in Austin. Great to see her again. She’s performing tonight as a guest vocalist for Easy Action, the band of 2 of the guys from Negative Approach. I’ll try and catch that later on. Now is the time for Roky motherfucking Erickson.
As I said, Okkervil River was the backing band of Roky. They came on, and introduced Roky. I had goosebums already. Walked up to just about a yard of 2 away from Roky and checked it out. They started out with songs in a row. ” Stand for the fire demon” , ” Two headed dog” and ” Bloody Hammer”. Damn! 3 of my favorite Roky songs, and the show just started. The band was good, tight, decent sound, and they really got what they were playing. Their guitarist / singer was sort of helping Roky through the set, taking him by the hand, figurally. The man is a mental wreck, who couldn’t really strike himself a pose or anything. Really sad to see. However, his voice was superb. They did some new stuff, Okkervil River is recording with Roky at the moment. Highlight of the set (which was a follow-up of constant highlights anyways) was the song ” Goodbye Sweet Dreams”. Man, that song is so amazing. Goosebumps all over again. The set ended with ” You’re gonna miss me” , after about an hour. No encores unfortunately. But hey, I just got to see an hour of Roky Erickson, which was brilliant. Best shit I’ve seen in years. Yeah!
After Roky, we hung out a bit with Bartman and Suzy, and walked into town again. Had a decent slice of pizza, and I went to see Japi, Koos and Tjerk at the Frank Turner show. Too bad he just finished playing when I walked in. We decided to walk to Stubbs, to see the Meatpuppets. Stubbs is one of the biggest outdoor venues of SXSW, holding about 2100 people. It was quite busy already, especially for an obscure band as the Meatpuppets. They just played ” Lake of Fire” when I came in. A song which got really famous by the version Nirvana did on their Unplugged sessions. After about 3 songs, I went to see Brimstone Howl in Headhunters. They weren’t as good as I’d expect them to be. Especially after the raving credit my friend De Rooie Neger gave them. Ah well….
After Brimstone Howl, I walked to the Creekside venue to see the Moistboys. That’s a project band with Jeff Pinkus (Butthole Surfers), Nick Oliveri (QOTSA) and 2 guys from Ween. There were a lot of familiar faces there, but Moistboys wasn’t on till 1 a.m., I just figured out. So, I decided to go to Room 710, where the TeePee showcase was on. When I walked in, I stumbled upon Walter Roadburn, who was talking to Gordon, the chief of Relapse Records. I met him 2 years ago when we almost signed a deal with Relapse with my band. Good to see him again. Had a nice talk about Relapse bands that are playing ZXZW etc.
In Room 710, Ancestors was playing. Entertaining, but not really outstaniding or anything. Japi, Koos and Tjerk were there too. Next up: Annihilation Time. Siked. I walked into Graham, their guitarist, that afternoon. He was surprised to see me in this context. Really nice to see him again. AT totally ripped, once more. The crowd was a bit more up there than they were at the show at Emo;s yesterday. Ofcourse, the singer tore down the backdrop again. Thing was ugly anyways.
After the AT show, I went back to Creekside, to see Moistboys. They were on just when I came in, Got some Lone-stars for everybody, and Moistboys started out. Straight in your face, punkrock ‘ n roll as fuck. Their singer was a weird, skinny guy who reminded me of Hein, singer from notorious Dutch hardcore band Tech9. Moistboys kicked everybodies ass. Loud and obnoxious, like a rock ‘n roll band should be. Liked it a lot.
After Moistboys finished, it was approaching 2 pm again, curfew. So we got kicked out of the venue, and drove back to Dave’s place for beers. We took pictures of us posing with Dave’s guns, which was really weird in a sence, but really cool in another sense. After a few beers, I went to sleep. I love this city!