The Pink Swords

SXSW Live Shots

SXSW Live Shots
Photo By John Anderson

The Pink Swords

Beerland, Wednesday, March 17 At first blush, the Pink Swords are punk rock band No. 29,372, straight from the 1981 model. You know the drill, charging through medium-fast riffage, singer barking like a rabid Rottweiler on a short chain. Austin's Swords are head and shoulders above the pack, more rock than punk, with longer songs, actual guitar solos, and the occasional nod to Seventies FM. More importantly, the Swords can play, stopping on a dime and executing breakneck changes, singer Pits Gaffer jumping about like Fred Astaire with a red-hot coat hanger jammed down the back of his trousers. Guitarist Stinkray Von, possessed of a really harsh and brutal guitar sound, throws in a lead squiggle now and then, but never anything that would get him accused of being a guitar hero. Songs like "Shit on You" and "Bathroom Stall" aren't very nice, but the band is having a good time doing them, as opposed to all the bands that are pissed, but you're not sure what about. It's the rock equivalent of raking the crowd with submachine gunfire, minus all the blood and dead bodies. It's enough to make even the old and jaded want to pick up a guitar and wage war with it. Right about when you thought this kind of stuff was yesterday's news, a band like this beats you over the head with the punk stick and makes it real again. We've hit a strange period in rock history when nothing goes completely out of style, and a band like the Pink Swords – awash in a spew of sweat, Lone Star, and PBR – are punk as hell, and they mean it. "Attitude? We don't give a shit what you think!" Damn straight.

Keep up with all our SXSW coverage at austinchronicle.com/sxsw. Sign up for our South By-specific newsletter at austinchronicle.com/newsletters for news, reviews, and previews delivered to your inbox every day of the Fest. And for the latest tweets, follow @ChronSXSW.

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  

READ MORE
Wednesday Interview
Wednesday Interview
Delta Spirit

Jim Caligiuri, March 20, 2015

Wednesday Picks & Sleepers
Wednesday Picks & Sleepers
First night SXSW Music recommendations and hints

March 20, 2015

More Music Reviews
Top 10 Box Sets of 2018
Metallica
... And Justice For All (Deluxe) (Record Review)

Alejandra Ramirez, Dec. 7, 2018

Texas Platters
Portrayal of Guilt
Let Pain Be Your Guide (Record Review)

Raoul Hernandez, Nov. 23, 2018

More by Jerry Renshaw
SXSW Live Shots
Export Sweden Showcase

March 19, 2004

SXSW Live Shots
Amsterdam Calling

March 19, 2004

MORE IN THE ARCHIVES
NEWSLETTERS
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