Hijack! 35 Conferette Spreadsheet 7 - Highlights:
The Beaten Sea – a traditional folk rock band from Dallas, TX with an alt country vibe and an honest delivery. The Beaten Sea are nicely rough around the edges, but really shine with beautiful harmonies and the unique vocal delivery of the lead singer. They have a bit of an Edward Sharpe vibe, using folk instrumentation to create a big sound while still maintaining that gypsy esthetic. They are lyrically strong as well, playing to that trait by keeping the vocals well pronounced and high in the mix. Their music sounds like back porch folk, but keeping it slow to not move into bluegrass territory. Fans of Mumford and Sons and The Decemberists will be drawn to The Beaten Sea to get their triumphant folk rock fix. The Beaten Sea released their debut self-titled album last year to great local praise, finding their songs creeping onto more than few top 10 lists in December. I’m looking forward to catching this band on the rise at 35 Conferette.
The Orbans (copied from my SXSW coverage) - an alt country band from Fort Worth, TX with a tight groove and strong songwriting. During SXSW 2009, I was wondering down 6th Street when I heard the Orbans playing out an open bar window and went in to check it out. A couple of beers later I was hooked. What’s great is that the Orbans have really come a far way since that show on the back of their debut LP When We Were Wild last year. They have an incredibly mature sound already; they’re songs almost sound familiar on first listen. A great deal of their sound owes credit to the rock of the 70’s, but with a Gen Y laid back vibe as well. I saw the Orbans a few months ago for the second time and was really moved by their set. They reminded me of a young Tom Petty & The Heartbreakers, not so much in sound but more in their presence and delivery. This band has a great deal of potential and should prove to be a highlight set at this year’s SXSW.
The Naptime Shake - a traditional alt country band from Dallas incorporating some indie folk.
Summer Ames - a pop singer-songwriter from Dallas with an jazzy voice and upbeat tone.