Japancakes: Thirty Three Degrees In-store, Thursday, Mar 16

Wednesday Night


Thirty Three Degrees In-store, Thursday, Mar 16

One of South by Southwest's open secrets is that between a myriad of in-store performances, barbecues, private parties, and showcases, music hounds can see music almost 24 hours a day. The day after playing their official slot at Emo's on the conference's first night, Japancakes joined Dressy Bessy for an in-store performance at venerable record haven Thirty Three Degrees. The former pharmacy turned small-but-mighty independent record store was an ideal setting for such an intimate performance: a small but adequate sound system, raised stage, free beer, and a gaggle of interested musicheads. Japancakes, an Athens, Georgia, septet of bass, slide guitar, drums, two electric guitars, keyboard, and cello opened with "Vocode-Inn," a two-chord willie that added layer upon layer of instrumental sounds. Like most of the group's original and melodic mini-symphonies, found on their recent Kindercore album If I Could See Dallas, the song was not quite as polished or interesting as a tune by contemporary instrumental masters Tortoise, but it did reach a pleasant flowing group crescendo. It got a good response from the half-packed house, a healthy mix of locals and conference attendees, with Pavement, Hyde Park preschool, and Hellacopters T-shirts in attendance. Their short set's closer was a more upbeat rocker, one that even got the rather subdued but nice woman at the free beer table nodding her head to the beat. Being a young band, and an instrumental one at that, the group seemed rather microphone shy, saying only "we're Japancakes" at the very end of their afternoon set. Overall, at worse their songs gravitated toward meandering group jams. At best they came on like Angelo Badalamenti conducting a slide guitar version of the Dirty Three on a sunny afternoon. Very cinematic. And that's a good description for the music of Japancakes: songs for a film yet to be shot.

A note to readers: Bold and uncensored, The Austin Chronicle has been Austin’s independent news source for almost 40 years, expressing the community’s political and environmental concerns and supporting its active cultural scene. Now more than ever, we need your support to continue supplying Austin with independent, free press. If real news is important to you, please consider making a donation of $5, $10 or whatever you can afford, to help keep our journalism on stands.

Support the Chronicle  

More Music Reviews
Top 10 Box Sets of 2018
Brian Eno
Music for Installations (Record Review)

Dan Gentile, Dec. 7, 2018

Texas Platters
Jeffrey Zeigler/Golden Hornet
The Sound of Science (Record Review)

Jeremy Steinberger, Nov. 30, 2018

More by David Lynch
Rock & Roll Summer Reading
How Can I Keep From Singing?: The Ballad of Pete Seeger

May 30, 2008

Texas Platters
That Damned Band
999 Surreal Eyes (Record Review)

Feb. 15, 2008

One click gets you all the newsletters listed below

Breaking news, arts coverage, and daily events

Can't keep up with happenings around town? We can help.

Austin's queerest news and events

Updates for SXSW 2019

All questions answered (satisfaction not guaranteed)

Information is power. Support the free press, so we can support Austin.   Support the Chronicle