SXSW 2014 Spreadsheet 67
OEB went a couple days vacation there, but we’re coming back swinging this week starting this afternoon. There’s a folky, rootsy element at play here, nice for a lazy Sunday. Highlights:
Jess Williamson (9) - Musically, Native State is pretty minimal through and through, the plucking of some strings and bass drum rhythms power the majority of these tracks. This music is raw, pretty without trying to be pretty.
Jade Simmons (7) - There’s no doubt that Simmons is incredibly talented, but it’s an ear for layering fascinating elements on top of her piano artistry that moves rather than just impresses.
J Roddy Walston & The Business (6) - The Business dropped Essential Tremors last year, shifting their rock-soul sound further into dirty garage corners best shown on impactful opener “Heavy Bells”. This is at least the band’s 4th consecutive SXSW, so look for a pulsing crowd who’s kept Walston & co. on their Austin agenda.
Jesse Malin (6) – NYC singer-songwriter and SXSW mainstay Jesse Malin is back in 2014, though I’m not sure if it’s a preview for a new release this year or just a chance to play out in Austin. Malin is a great compliment to any Ryan Adams record, an emotional rock balladeer with a sweet, lyrical touch.
Irene Diaz (5) – Diaz’s 2013 EP I Love You Madly is a very minimal effort, mostly accompanied by acoustic picking and a piano chord or two. The LA singer-songwriter’s voice shines, especially from an R&B/alt country angle.
JD Wilkes & The Dirt Daubers (5) – The Dirt Daubers have gotten electric and dirty on their latest blues-rock record Wild Moon. Relatively straightforward in nature, Wilkes & co. impress with raw energy and some killer solos (harp, guitar, keys, et. al.)
Jerry David DeCicca (5) – DeCicca is set to release his solo debut in March and from early tracks, it looks like it will be a dark, minimal blues record. This introverted approach isn’t too far away in intention from his main work with The Black Swans, but the starkness of DeCicca’s sound is subtly engrossing.