Saturday Sleepers

SXSW Music Fest preview guide

All Showcases Subject to Change

The Sippy Cups

12:30pm, Town Lake Stage @ Auditorium Shores For some truly trippin' family time, check this San Francisco sextet, which relies on giant puppets, bright colors, and juggling unicyclists to hold the rugrats in thrall. Their self-released debut, Electric Storyland, earned raves from all the kid-rock critics; this appearance is one of the group's first outside NorCal. – Melanie Haupt


8pm, Creekside @ the Hilton Improbably based in Harlem, Samamidon's reworking of traditional folk songs on their debut But This Chicken Proved Falsehearted (Plug Research) drawls with a back-holler authenticity and devotion to the spirit of the originals. Samuel Tear's gentle banjo and guitar minimally shade the creaking whine of Sam Amidon's Appalachian-styled vocals. – Doug Freeman

Papa Mali

8pm, Eternal To some, he's Dr. John with a Texas ZIP code, but Papa Mali – so dubbed by Burning Spear – brews a wicked gumbo of Louisiana-influenced funky roots-blues while calling Austin home. A founding member of the reggae band Killer Bees, Papa Mali (aka Malcolm Welbourne) grinds plenty of mojo on his latest CD, Do Your Thing. – Margaret Moser

Uncle Earl

8pm, Continental Club Featuring the core talents of fab-femme foursome K.C. Groves, Kristin Andreassen, Rayna Gellert, and Abigail Washburn, Uncle Earl's sophomore effort, Waterloo, Tennessee, is contemporary old-time music at its best. Produced by John Paul Jones, the oft-raucus tunes are beautifully polished, with the g'Earl's originals as timeless as the traditionals. – Doug Freeman

Daniel Francis Doyle

8pm, Blender Balcony @ the Ritz Two years ago, we hadn't even heard his name. Nowadays, Austin's Daniel Francis Doyle has his feet in everything from this solo project to the like-minded When Dinosaurs Ruled the Earth. Armed with his drum kit, sampler, and various noisemakers, his 2006 debut, Who Are Your Customers (Furniture), is a 12-minute blast of rhythmic psychosis. – Darcie Stevens

Awesome Cool Dudes

9pm, Karma Lounge Austin fivepiece Awesome Cool Dudes love basketball shorts, choreography, and falsetto jams. They rap on 2005 sophomore tastemaker Maxin and Relaxin (Furniture), and after a crazy 2006 (involving a hacked Web site, a stolen van, and a benefit concert for said thievery), the boys are back on the court. – Darcie Stevens

Joseph Israel

9pm, Flamingo Cantina A redheaded kid from Arkansas, Joseph Israel's folks owned a club that hosted touring reggae acts. From this intro, the singer sought Haile Selassie and Jamaica's I-and-I riddims. Israel's debut, Gone Are the Days (New Door), was tracked at Bob Marley's Tuff Gong studio with Chinna Smith, Marley's guitarist. – David Lynch

Messiah J & The Expert

9:30pm, Soho Lounge Know anyone Irish? Then you're familiar with verbosity. A good trait, if it's focused like this hip-hop-electronica-jazz duo from Dublin. Supporting their sixth, Now This I Have to Hear (Inaudible), toaster/rapper Messiah J and sonic chemist the Expert dismantle typical Irish music conventions. – David Lynch


10pm, Club de Ville We're still waiting on a follow-up to this Austin outfit's 2004 self-titled sophomore effort, but that doesn't mean the supremely talented indie-rock quintet isn't making compelling music these days. Spend a few minutes on their MySpace page and you'll hear some of their best work yet, like the sassy rocker "Autographin' Bibles" and the boppy "Race Rabbit." – Melanie Haupt

Viva l'American Death Ray Music

10pm, Blender Bar @ the Ritz "We are record-collector rock," proclaims this tensile trio from Memphis by way of New York. Given that appellation, it's not surprising to catch flashes of Velvet Underground, Television, and Pere Ubu on 2006's In the Meantime (New York Night Train). – Greg Beets

Keith Killgo

10pm, Elephant Room While still in his teens, this jazz drummer and vocalist was working with Joe Henderson and Stanley Clarke, and spent years with Donald Byrd as a member of the Blackbyrds. Based in D.C., Killgo just re-released his 2004 album, This World, which features Byrd, Larry Coryell, and Oscar Brown Jr. – Jay Trachtenberg

The Red Stick Ramblers

10pm, Continental Club Lafayette, La.'s Red Stick Ramblers mix Cajun fiddle tunes, Western swing, Twenties jazz, and inspired originals with a youthful verve that's intoxicating. The quintet was recently featured on the soundtrack to the film All the King's Men and contributed to the Linda Ronstadt/Ann Savoy collaboration Adieu False Heart (Vanguard). – Jim Caligiuri


11:20pm, Redrum Traversing the cosmic universe with lightning speed and a Maiden-esque tandem guitar gallop, Austin's Blackholicus embarks on classically minded metal voyages led by the siren shrieks of bassist Margaret Myrick. The quartet's 2006 indie debut, Variations in Death Minor, writhes with virtuosic solos from the metal of yore. – Austin Powell

Au Revoir Simone

12mid, Copa Taking their name from Pee-wee's Big Adventure, Brooklyn's Au Revoir Simone percolates on three keyboards and a drum machine. The female trio's 2006 debut, Verses of Comfort, Assurance and Salvation, was a minimalistic, synth-pop delight, while May's The Bird of Music adds strings, vibraphones, and more to the mix. – Doug Freeman

The Lennings

12mid, Mohawk Austin quartet the Lennings are still under the radar, but their dusky, multi-instrumental acoustic pop is catching on at local coffeehouses and listening rooms like Flipnotics and the Cactus Cafe. Last year's debut, Big Beige Car, available locally and at, will charm any self-respecting Elliott Smith fan. – Christopher Gray

Frog Eyes

1am, Habana Calle 6 Patio Following their epileptic trilogy – The Bloody Hand, The Golden River, The Folded Palm – Victoria, B.C., quartet Frog Eyes continues its explorations of all things cataclysmic with Tears of the Valedictorian, due in May on Absolutely Kosher. Once again featuring Wolf Parade/Swan Lake's Spencer Krug, the group's epic trek reaches new heights of mania. – Austin Powell


1am, Tap Room @ Six This twang-tinged quintet from Bergen, Norway, was one of SXSW 06's hidden treasures. Real Ones place their ace musicianship and stylistic palette in the service of the Beatles, Neil Young, and the Flaming Lips. Even in a cramped Sixth Street bar, lighters should flicker to would-be hits like "Ballad of an Old Man." – Greg Beets


1am, Blender Bar @ the Ritz After skittering around the edges of prog-punk delirium, Austin's Oh, Beast! reveal themselves to be masters of a controlled, sonic death spiral. The trio's cut-and-paste lyrical Dadaism does nothing to restore equilibrium. Recent tunes such as "Scab Museum" have the warm, rough quality of experimental cinema and/or fresh scabs. – Greg Beets

Dead Meadow

1am, Club de Ville D.C.'s Dead Meadow keeps one foot firmly in the past with sludge that colors the spectrum from Black Sabbath to Blue Cheer. Last year, the habitually stoned trio rekindled their own fallen foliage, re-releasing their self-titled debut with 2001's Howls From the Hills. Their infamous Peel session follows shortly. – Austin Powell

Big Tuck, Tum-Tum & DSR

1:15am, Visions Tum-Tum's "Caprice Musik" just might wind up as the Dallas version of "Still Tippin.'" Fellow DSR member Big Tuck didn't quite blow up with "Tussle" as was expected, so to have Tum-Tum follow it up with an instant classic is just what the doctor ordered for Big D hip-hop. – Robert Gabriel

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Friday Picks & Sleepers
Friday Picks & Sleepers
Obvious Picks and loads of not-so-obvious Sleepers!

March 20, 2015

Thursday Showcases
Thursday Showcases
International hip-hop, or domestic, Modern Outsider sounds?

March 20, 2015

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