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Sweet Spirit Tour Diary
On the road with Spoon
DAILY Music  May 26, 2015, by Kevin Curtin
"...Sweet Spirit, the high-energy pop group led by Giant Dog members Sabrina Ellis and Andrew Cashen, are deep into a two-week tour opening for fellow Austinites Spoon. The former sent us dispatches from the road that she scrawled on toilet paper and delivered to the Chronicle via carrier grackle...."

First Listen: Sweet Spirit
Gripping demo from members of A Giant Dog & Bobby Jealousy
DAILY Music  April 7, 2014, by Kevin Curtin
"...As I gathered up the discs into a double, Quarter Pounder with Cheese-sized stack, one shiny circle gave me pause. The burned CD had been scrawled with a marker: “Sweet Spirit master 03/07/2014 at Superpop [Studios].” Oh right...."

Sweet Spirit: Masters of Puppets
Heavy pop locals premiere “Baby When I Close My Eyes”
DAILY Music  January 11, 2016, by Kevin Curtin
"...Our felt friends suffer the harsh realities of modern America in Sweet Spirit’s video for “Baby When I Close My Eyes,” taken from the locals’ full-length debut last year, Cokomo. The clip, directed by local filmmaker John Valley, weaves together a series of chilling puppet vignettes that quickly left turn from cuddly to harrowing...."

Sweet Spirit Record Review
Cokomo (Nine Mile)
Music Story  October 29, 2015, by Kevin Curtin
"...Cokomo may not be a real place, but Sweet Spirit's all over the map on their first studio full-length: raising hell with broken hearts on melodic garage anthem "Take Me to a Party," dropping the disco ball for the passionate "Baby When I Close My Eyes," and evoking a beachside campfire jam with "My Poor Stupid Heart." It's a work that continues expanding the musical scope of Austin's heavy pop gang, dually fronted by born entertainer Sabrina Ellis and her punk counterpart Andrew Cashen, who've already logged a studio EP and live LP in 2015. Though Cokomo's stylistic variety results from bouncy horn sections and bold keyboard strokes by Jake Knight, the album's crucial cuts are those that land uncluttered in the pop/rock strike zone where scrappy guitars complement extravagant melodies..."

Sweet Film Fight
DAILY Screens  October 13, 2008, by Josh Rosenblatt
"...If any readers out there are skeptical that the Film Fight format is just a gimmick – an artificial disputatious environment between two otherwise agreeable souls – you’ll be happy to know that Kim and I spent a good chunk of last week railing at each other at birthday parties and other social functions. I don’t know if we were just getting ourselves back into the holiday spirit, or if we actually disagree that strongly about the value of a clean house or the relative virtues of my romantic philosophy, but few punches were pulled and fewer apologies were offered..."

That Fighting Spirit
Revisiting Sweet Smell of Success
Screens Story  October 22, 2010, by Marjorie Baumgarten


Smells Like Preteen Spirit
Kid rockers Three Hourz Sleep confront their first major crisis when their drummer moves away.
Music Story  December 28, 2001, by Margaret Moser
"..."Smells Like Teen Spirit," Nirvana's decade-old anthem, didn't translate literally into teen angst here -- the four members of Three Hourz Sleep are between 11 and 13, still innocent of the interpretations of Kurt Cobain's jaded command. At an average age of 12, to them, the song sounds good and feels good to play...."

That Fighting Spirit
The Austin Film Festival comes out swinging: an introduction
Screens Story  October 22, 2010, by Kimberley Jones


Sweet Homes, Alabama
KLRU debuts Rural Studio doc 'Citizen Architect'
DAILY Screens  August 23, 2010, by Cindy Widner
"...Austin filmmaker Sam Wainwright Douglas' Citizen Architect: The Spirit of Samuel Mockbee and the Rural Studio, captures Mockbee's charismatic personality and vision, as well as the vitality of Hale County's denizens, in a fashion both moving and entertaining. If you missed Douglas' doc at SXSW 09, or even if you didn't, you'd be well-advised to catch its PBS debut on KLRU Monday, August 23, at 9pm..."

The Summer Revival Spirit
Can I Get a Witness?
Screens Story  June 12, 1998


Playback: Charlie Pierce Burns It Down
Charlie Pierce, the Gibby Haynes of piano, speaks out; Sweet Spirit serenades Spoon in a tour diary excerpt; and Phil Anselmo says maybe next year for a Housecore Horror ATX return
Music Column  May 28, 2015, by Kevin Curtin
"...Choctaw Wildfire, featuring drummer Leland Potter, bass and tuba player Will Landin, and multi-instrumentalist Jeffrey Barnes, celebrate Nowhere's release with a performance at Eastside lounge Stay Gold on Saturday night. Sweet Spirit's Spoon Diary..."

Tear Dungeon: Black Rubber & Blood
Sweet Spirit and A Giant Dog’s abrasive metal abomination
DAILY Music  March 3, 2016, by Kevin Curtin
"...For Andrew Cashen, guitarist/vocalist for pop powerhouse Sweet Spirit and melodic punks A Giant Dog, the question’s long been which of his local acts will hit it big first? That remains undecided, but I’ll wager against option number three: Blood drooling, gimp mask-sporting, garage-metal Austin quintet Tear Dungeon...."

Take Me to a Party
Sweet Spirit pops big
Music Story  October 29, 2015, by Tim Stegall
"..."Sweet Spirit's music is super-arranged and hyper-composed, because so many people's opinions and ideas go into it."..."

Glimmer Twins
Sabrina Ellis and Andrew Cashen instigate A Giant Dog Pile
Music Story  May 5, 2016, by Tim Stegall
"...The singer smiles at longtime creative partner and guitarist/co-vocalist Andrew Cashen, seated nearby at a picnic table outside Big Orange Recording. Discussing the locals' third LP, Pile, their debut for über indie Merge Records (Arcade Fire, Spoon, Bob Mould), the prolific duo are actually at the East Austin compound putting finishing touches on their New Wave pop outfit Sweet Spirit's sophomore LP, recorded here with Stuart Sikes (Riverboat Gamblers, White Stripes, Loretta Lynn) and Los Lobos' Steve Berlin, who produced Grupo Fantasma's 2015 career-high disc Problemas...."

Spoon Surprises Hotel Vegas
Britt Daniel, Jim Eno, and crew meet Sabrina Ellis’ Sweet Spirit
DAILY Music  May 7, 2014, by Chase Hoffberger
"...Clock struck 9:59pm when Spoon stepped onstage, so sure, according to whatever social media promotion posted by the seminal Austin act around 4pm Tuesday – when the newly realized fivepiece leaked news that it would break its 29-month gigging hiatus for a free show opening for local upstarts Sweet Spirit – they were as prompt as drummer Jim Eno’s snare hits...."

Celebrate MLK Day With P.I.E.
“Peace Includes Everyone” and everyone could use a treat right now
DAILY Food  January 12, 2018, by Jessi Cape
"...For peace to exist we need the knowledge to create it, the opportunity to experience it, and the heart to share it. The spirit of P.I.E..."

Adventureland
Adventureland is a confident return to the kind of teen comedy that’s funny without being raunchy and youthful without being juvenile.
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Film Review  April 3, 2009, by Marjorie Baumgarten
"...It would still be years before his work on Apatow’s Undeclared landed Mottola in position to direct 2007’s megalaugher Superbad, which was produced by Apatow and scripted by Seth Rogen and Evan Goldberg. Now back as a writer and director, Mottola delivers a movie that is closer in comedic spirit to the sweet and soulful Daytrippers than to the rad and raunchy Superbad, although all three films share an affinity for single compound-word titles..."

Baadasssss!
Melvin Van Peebles' son Mario pays tribute to his groundbreaking film Sweet Sweetback's Baad Asssss Song, and also settles a few old Oedipal scores along the way.
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Film Review  June 25, 2004, by Marjorie Baumgarten
"...Mario VP clearly has a few issues still roiling from having grown up the son of this tough and obsessed man, and the portrait he paints of Melvin in Baadasssss! is warts-and-all. Nevertheless, Baadasssss! is a son’s ultimate tribute and gift to his father, promoting Melvin VP’s rightful place in the history of American independent filmmaking and lionizing the filmmaker’s indomitable spirit and vision..."

Top 10 Austin Albums of 2017
Consensus on the best local platters
Music Story  December 28, 2017, by Greg Beets, Thomas Fawcett, Raoul Hernandez, Abby Johnston, Lauren Modery, Rachel Rascoe, Tim Stegall and Michael Toland
"...3) Sweet Spirit, St. Mojo (Nine Mile)..."

A Giant Dog
Music Review  August 24, 2017, by Tim Stegall
"...For starters, Toy breaks with Mike McCarthy, producer of last year's Pile and the debut long-player by A Giant Dog sister act Sweet Spirit, Austinites also led by Cashen and Ellis. Enter Stuart Sikes, helmsman of game-changing records for luminaries including the White Stripes, Modest Mouse, and Reigning Sound, who worked with Los Lobos' Steve Berlin on Sweet Spirit's recent sophomore disc St..."

Sweet Spirit
Music Review  March 30, 2017, by Kevin Curtin
"...Imprisoned glam rock pioneer Gary Glitter would be devastated to hear Sweet Spirit's new single. "The Power" not only unfolds with the same pounding floor tom as his signature "Rock & Roll Part 2," it threatens to unseat the 1972 opus as the genre's most compelling offering..."

Chronicle 'Hair of the 3-Legged Dog' SXSW Day Party
PHOTO GALLERY  March 20, 2015
"...Sweet Spirit..."

Free Week Shakeups & Breakups
Finding new life amidst last calls minutes from your doorstep
DAILY Music  January 8, 2014, by Chase Hoffberger
"...I was there to see Sweet Spirit, a new band comprised of Sabrina Ellis and A Giant Dog bandmate Andrew Cashen, though I hadn’t known their name when I arrived. This was their first show – on the fourth day of bandhood..."

Sweet Spirit
Music Review  April 2, 2015, by Kevin Curtin
"...Sweet Spirit(Nine Mile Records)..."

Curious George
It’s not perfect, but this big-screen debut of H.A. Rey’s lovable monkey is faithful to George’s gentle spirit while fully exploiting the possibilities of old-school, two-dimensional animation.
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Film Review  February 10, 2006, by Marrit Ingman
"...Rey’s lovable monkey is worth recommending to audiences of all ages, especially fathers and sons. Lovingly rendered by executive producer Ron Howard’s Imagine Entertainment, the production is faithful to George’s gentle spirit while fully exploiting the possibilities of old-school, two-dimensional animation..."

Playback: Crazed for Christmas
Grammy nominations, Rock & Roll Hall of Fame inductions, and eight days of Christmas
Music Column  December 18, 2014, by Kevin Curtin
"...Austin's music community barely contains its holiday spirit. Like department stores that begin playing Christmas jingles on December 1, we've already blown our festive wads with heavy metal Christmas concerts, hip-hop toy drives, and ugly sweater dance parties..."

Requiem for a Dream
Portrait of a young junkie – and those he loves.
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Film Review  November 10, 2000, by Sarah Hepola
"...Starring: Jared Leto, Jennifer Connelly, Ellen Burstyn, Louise Lasser and Marlon Wayans. In Darren Aronofsky's sophomore effort, the human spirit does not prevail; it barely even endures..."

My Dog Skip
To say that I wept copiously during My Dog Skip, the feature adaptation of Willie Morris' ode to his childhood pup, is not by itself an endorsement of the picture's...
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Film Review  January 21, 2000, by Robert Faires
"...Carter that it glows. Young Willie is given ample appeal by Malcolm in the Middle's Frankie Muniz, whose irrepressible smile conveys his loving spirit and profound affection for Skip..."

The Secret of Roan Inish
Water moving, in ripples, in waves. It is the first image in this film, and from it we can feel that the story we are about to be told is...
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Film Review  June 2, 1995, by Robert Faires
"...As in other of his films, especially Matewan and Passion Fish, Sayles gets under the skin of the place, to a spot where the pulse of it can be felt and its beat is a steady sound. Here, he doesn't so much “capture” the rhythm and spirit of Irish coastal life as ride alongside them, matching their pace and rising and falling with them, like a seal through the tide..."

The Fault in Our Stars
The film does justice to the popular novel in this judicious teen tearjerker.
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Film Review  June 6, 2014, by Kimberley Jones
"...After a slow, sweet build to an adventure in Amsterdam, the film dramatically plateaus, but not ruinously so: It is simply placid about other foregone conclusions. The film has a gentle spirit; it makes no sudden movements..."

Breaking Up Is Hard to Do
Bands break up, sure, but were they even trying?
Music Story  January 24, 2014, by Chase Hoffberger
"...3 text from its drummer Josh Wienholt ("next Friday will be our last"). Bobby Jealousy's news came later that same evening at Hotel Vegas, after Sabrina Ellis' new band Sweet Spirit played in place of her departed hard-pop crew..."

Frozen
This animated film mines Hans Christian Andersen’s fairy tales for material, discards the most brutish bits, and applies a heavy Disney top gloss.
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Film Review  November 29, 2013, by Kimberley Jones
"...The snowman gets the film’s cleverest and best choreographed number, “In Summer,” a daft, winning ditty that, coming at mid-film, marks Frozen’s high point. Still, the spirit of the song – pure of heart, noble in intention – carries throughout the film...."

The Perfect Holiday
In this lightweight yuletide fluffery, a young girl turns to a shopping-mall Santa to find a husband for her divorced mother.
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Film Review  December 14, 2007, by Marc Savlov
"...Starring: Morris Chestnut, Gabrielle Union, Faizon Love, Terrence Howard, Queen Latifah, Charlie Murphy, Katt Williams and Rachel True. Far from perfect and about as much fun as a holiday in Cambodia, this is lightweight yuletide fluffery, offensive neither in tone nor spirit but entirely unnecessary..."

Five Wives, Three Secretaries and Me
Among his abundant blessings Tom Blake should be most grateful of all for the generous spirit of his daughter, Tessa, who directed this film about the 89-year-old Houston lawyer and...
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Film Review  February 11, 2000, by Russell Smith
"...Directed by: Tessa Blake. Among his abundant blessings Tom Blake should be most grateful of all for the generous spirit of his daughter, Tessa, who directed this film about the 89-year-old Houston lawyer and his influence on his extended family..."

100 Local SXSW Music Acts
A-Z list of 100 Austin acts showcasing at the Fest
Music Story  March 16, 2017, by The Music Staff
"...Debut single "Get Loose" does one better with a party-down riff redolent of Brownsville Station's Detroit. The quartet's approach may be elemental, but they rekindle the glass-breaking Saturday night spirit of their forebears. – Greg Beets Beth Chrisman..."

99 Austin Acts at SXSW Music
Support the home team!
Music Story  March 8, 2018
"...16, Auditorium Shores, 7pm Second LP in two years for super indie Merge, Pile drove indie rock straight in a turnbuckle with the theatrical élan of front duo Sabrina Ellis and Andrew Cashen. Also the Sonny & Cher behind the equally electrifying Sweet Spirit, not only was the pair's "Disneyland on LSD" video among the Chronicle's highest viewed posts last year, A Giant Dog's Austin Music Award for Best Rock last month got retrieved by Ellis impersonator John Valley and Chronicle columnist Kevin Curtin subbing for bassist Graham Low..."

Hold My End Up
Delta Spirit frontman Matt Vasquez returns to his roots: Austin
Music Story  June 4, 2015, by Jim Caligiuri
"...Vasquez, lead singer and songwriter for indie rock favorite Delta Spirit, spent years feeling rootless. He grew up in Central Texas and attended Dripping Springs High School for a year..."

Finding Your Feet
Upper class British rom-com plays for laughs.
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Film Review  April 20, 2018, by Marjorie Baumgarten
"...A socialite, mortified by the actions of her husband, moves in with her estranged sister, a free spirit whose limited financial means are a source of embarrassment. In time, she loosens up, learns to love and lose again, and discovers the inherent value of family and friends..."

Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 1
This is the finest Potter film yet – darker, funnier, and more epic than everything that has come before.
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Film Review  November 19, 2010, by Kimberley Jones
"...Kloves, who has written all but one of the series' screenplays (and frankly bobbled in the last one, Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince), goes off book to write an original, incandescent scene between Harry and Hermione that wordlessly elides a raw mix of emotions, and he gives Ron, now plainly in love with Hermione, a monumental monologue that is at once tender and winning and ripe for later ribbing. (Too bad Harry has no romantic equivalent; while all the other child actors aged quite brilliantly into nimble emoters, Bonnie Wright, as Harry's intended, Ginny Weasley, is, as ever, a wet blanket.) Deathly Hallows has been stripped of the series' tendency to mug hamlike for laughs; what remains is genuinely funny stuff that is still truthful to the spirit of these decent, sometimes goofy kid-characters, whom we've watched grow up in the course of 10 years..."

SXSW Live Shot: Chronicle Day Party
Weekly’s tripod mascot howls at Liberty
DAILY Music  March 20, 2015, by Michael Toland
"...Sweet Spirit got slapped with next big thing status right out of the gate, and it’s easy to see why. Outside of frontwoman Sabrina Ellis’ obvious charisma, part Florence Welch, part Lucille Ball, the locals bring giddy fizz to classic pop, allowing the energy to mask the hard work that’s clearly gone into the songwriting..."

The Rules of the Game
How Hudson's on the Bend captures the spirit of cooking fearlessly
Food Story  August 20, 2004, by MM Pack
"...The venerable Hudson's on the Bend is the granddaddy of Austin's Southwestern-style fine dining and, after almost two decades, continues to set the standard for imaginative and beautifully presented regional food in elegantly casual surroundings. The rustic stone ranchhouse, graced by paintings, white tablecloths, and candlelight, perfectly captures the spirit of its literal and figurative position at the cusp of urban Austin and the Texas Hill Country...."

Where the Heart is
The writing team of Lowell Ganz and Babaloo Mandel is responsible for some of the best comedic dramas of the past 20 years (Parenthood, City Slickers) as well as individually...
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Film Review  April 28, 2000, by Marc Savlov
"...That bastion of middle-American consumer conservatism achieves almost mythic status in the film -- when Novalee is forced to give birth to her child in the sporting-goods aisle, she becomes a totem of unwed mamas everywhere, though it's hard to see the point. Bargain prices on Asian sweatshop-manufactured tennis clogs just don't have the can-do spirit the film ought to be going after..."

Affliction
"Some days I feel just like a whipped dog," says Wade Whitehouse (Nolte). The sad, uncomprehending look in his eyes both confirms his words and foreshadows the ones that follow:...
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Film Review  February 19, 1999, by Russell Smith
"...The sad, uncomprehending look in his eyes both confirms his words and foreshadows the ones that follow: "… someday, I swear, I'm gonna bite back." Wade, an ill-paid and ill-regarded small-town cop in New Hampshire, is a guy we all know only too well. Middle-aged in body but utterly used up in spirit, his main source of satisfaction in life appears to be a grim commitment to slogging robotically through his remaining years -- if only to spite the ill-defined outside forces he blames for his failures and disappointments..."

Meet the Deedles
I have to admit to not really being able to remember all of the Teenese from Bill and Ted's Excellent Adventure or Fast Times at Ridgemont High or even Clueless...
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Film Review  April 3, 1998, by Hollis Chacona
"...The Deedles (Phil and Stew) are twins, a pair of latter-day Moondoggies whose love for the surf and wahines has gotten them expelled from school on their 18th birthday. Daddy Deedle is disappointed, and sends the boys packing into the Wyoming wilderness to be straightened out by his ex-Army buddy, a Rambo-like wildman who runs Camp Broken Spirit, a boot camp for languishing rich kids..."

Keepin' Up With the Jones Family
The Jones Family Singers hear the spirit speak in Austin
Music Story  September 20, 2013, by Michael Corcoran
"...An older gentleman with a James Brown step to his drawl introduces the group as his five daughters, two sons, and a grandson. Twelve-year-old Ian Wade then kicks it off with a fierce snare; the sisters in matching lime green shirts and jean skirts start to sway as if moved by a spiritual wind..."

Darkbird Gets Down With Its Bad Self
Austin quintet goes crazy channeling Prince
DAILY Music  December 5, 2017, by Kevin Curtin
"...Darkbird at its most swaggering, sonic, and sweaty can be glimpsed in the video for “Bad Self,” from an end-of-summer 7-inch single dished by the Austin quintet. The clip finds the group collaborating again with John Valley, the actor/filmmaker known for making wondrously twisted music videos for Sweet Spirit and Whiskey Shivers..."

Playback: Armadillo Tales
A review of the best book on Austin’s 1970s music scene since The Improbable Rise of Redneck Rock
Music Column  April 6, 2017, by Kevin Curtin
"...Sweet Spirit welcomed Har Mar Superstar to duet on Pulp's "Common People" during Friday's sold-out album release show at Barracuda. A socially diverse crowd, including Mayor Steve Adler, who proclaimed April 1 "Sweet Spirit Day" then watched the whole set, proved Austin's heavy pop favorites have crossed over...."

SXSW Music List Four
Spoon, Kate Nash, Malcolm London, and 141 more added
DAILY Music  January 19, 2017, by Kevin Curtin
"...Rising country/folk singer-songwriter Carson McHone, pop detonators Sweet Spirit, almighty groove-mongers Greyhounds, and pan-Latin songstress Gina Chavez lead a list of 36 Austin acts. Also included are: Ben Aqua, Broken Gold, Curved Light, D.J..."

SXSW Music: Second Band List of 2016
Tommy Stinson, Thee Oh Sees, Mercury Rev, and 212 more
DAILY Music  November 17, 2015, by Kevin Curtin, Raoul Hernandez and Chase Hoffberger
"...Closer to home, Austin reps 11 artists on SXSW’s second blast: Ben Aqua, Dana Falconberry & Medicine Bow, Future Blondes, Ghost Wolves, Colin Gilmore, Gold Beach, Hard Proof, Mr. Kitty, Ramesh, Sertified, and Sweet Spirit...."

Playback: Bavu Blakes Carpes the Diem
Bavu Blakes seizes his own day, Shakey Graves lands an Austin City Limits taping, and the Saxon Pub turns 25
Music Column  April 30, 2015, by Kevin Curtin
"...Since 1993, when the tradition began, nearly 700 bands or artists ranging from Grammy winners to cover bands, have garnered such honors. Yet Blakes' day exhibited particular poignancy, not only for his leadership qualifications in the realms of music, education, and spirituality, but also because his performance tore the damn roof off City Hall...."

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