In the meantime, dig this.
I love writing my weekly column for New Times. But there’s more to life than meat (not much more, but more). Which explains why I’ve cracked open my American Express points-bank and cashed in for a ticket to Austin next month: I’m covering SXSW, bitches!
If you know what SXSW is, I’m guessing I don’t need to explain why covering it for the paper is awsomeness incarnate (if you don’t, then go check it out), but I will anyway.
Imagine five days of great music, great food, and margaritas. Now add in spending time with bands like Rogue Wave, Karnivool, and a bunch of others, then writing about it. And since I’m not really a traditional, boring interview kinda guy (but you knew that already, didn’t you?) it’s going to be about hanging out, then telling the story. Which is good for me, for the bands, and for anyone reading my stuff (do we really need yet another flurry of boring, cliched, cookie cutter reports from a music festival, written by people who’s primary goals seems to be proving that they know more than you? No, my brother, we do not).
So all that’s great. But it gets better: because not only will I get to see bands I already know are great, I get to discover worthwhile bands that I didn’t know a damn thing about, then tell everyone who will listen to check them out. And that starts here, now, with Crash Kings.
The publicist for Karnivool turned me on to them (yeah, yeah, she’s their publicist too, but you can’t fault the chick for doing her job), and they just do not suck. First of all, they’re a three piece with no guitar: like the brilliant Joe Jackson album Rain (which, I should note, Crash Kings do not sound like) it’s a piano/bass/drums thing.
And at times, it’s a huge piano/bass/drums thing. If you’re looking for a list of sound-alikes though, sorry, I’m not really into playing that game (and you can hear what they sound like for yourself on their site). There’s something inherently great about a three piece, and the fact that singer/keyboardist Tony Beliveau rocks one of the coolest Clavinets I’ve ever seen (see video below for more on that) just makes the whole thing better.
Second, they’re really good song writers, and they have that whole written-on-a-keyboard-not-a-guitar thing going for them, which is tits. Plus, Beliveau can actually sing without using Satan’s tool (that’d be Auto-Tune, not devil dick), so fuck you, Taylor Swift.
Third, well, just check out the video below. Beliveau is playing that Clavinet I mentioned before, according to the band one of only 12 in existence with a whammy bar. But it’s not just about the Clav: according to their publicist, they really dig vintage gear in general (apparently the studio they tracked in is filled with it), which earns them huge points (redeemable for exactly nothing, but points nonetheless).
I’ll get back with the full story of hanging out, and how they were live (though if the videos on their site are any indication, they’ll be great) once I hit Austin. I’ll also be filling in the spaces between my pieces for New Times with reviews, stories and updates right here (you’ll note the new SXSW category in the header)
In the meantime, enjoy the video and go grab their album.