SXSW 2014 Spreadsheet 95
Experimental rock and pop bands take most of the top slots of this evening’s latest set. Highlights:
Sivu (9) - Take his latest track “Can’t Stop Now”, a jangly rock song that feels like an evolution of The Strokes into some indie pop soundscapes. Mirror that against the minimal, ethereal “Communicate”, a stunning crooner that builds with orchestral majesty.
The Silent Comedy (8) - The Silent Comedy have amped up their sound a notch or two on their 2013 EP Friends Divide, driving alt country tracks into rock and roll territory. There’s still a rootsy quality that undertones the music here, but it’s nice to see the extraverted side of this Laurel Canyon-influenced, California band.
Sir Sly (8) - “Ghost” draws out a subtle R&B rhythm until the chorus drops a hip hop backbeat. It’s just the kind of twist that ambient pop needs, a sound that is explored further in “Gold”, a borderline rap track that still has the hypnotic tones that Sir Sly has based their sound around.
Simian Ghost (7) - With recent singles “Echoes of Songs” (a tribute to late Broadcast’s Trish Keenan) and “A Millon Shining Colours”, Simian Ghost has managed to open up their sound to shifting moods and structures, an evolution of what is still, at its heart, a blissful, pop sound.
Sick/Sea (5) – Sick/Sea is a bit a genre-run, taking a base of indie/alt rock by infusing little jazz licks here, some ambient dream pop there. With all of these interesting detours, when Sick/Sea colors within the lines, it can feel limiting to their exposed potential.
The Silver Palms (5) – The Silver Palms just released their debut single “Superstar”, a relatively straightforward rock and roll number, but there are some tight grooves and slithery vocals that make for an attention-grabbing introduction. It’ll be interesting to hear what the next three minutes will sound like.