Shearwater

SXSW showcase reviews

Live Shots
Photo By Roxanne Jo Mitchell

Shearwater

Central Presbyterian Church, Thursday, March 15

Consider Shearwater's otherworldly showcase a testament to the Austin act's decision to re-record and release a deluxe edition of last year's Palo Santo. Where that album failed to capture the frailty of songsmith Jonathan Meiburg's restrained falsetto and magnitude of his cataclysmic outbursts, at the altar of Central Presbyterian Church the local quintet delivered a baptism by fire that revealed the full extent of the band's matured songcraft. Beginning behind the grand house piano, Meiburg's voice resonated beautifully throughout the steeple with Santo's slow-building opener, "La Dame et la Licorne," before a rapturous kick drum ushered in the banjo-tinged "Red Sea, Black Sea." The recent Matador signees debuted some new material as well, most notably a pensive piano ballad, "The Snow Leopard," that segued into a rousing "Seventy-Four, Seventy-Five." Fulfilling a childhood fantasy, Meiburg, a former Episcopalian choirboy, then amped up his electric guitar and rattled the pews with "Nobody" and "White Waves," closing with the crashing crescendo of "Hail, Mary" that quite possibly pierced the heavens.

A note to readers: Bold and uncensored, The Austin Chronicle has been Austin’s independent news source for over 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
Saturday Interview
Saturday Interview

Kevin Curtin, March 20, 2015

Friday Interviews
Friday Interviews
The Church, Leon Bridges, Best Coast – vintage, meteoric, and sincere.

March 20, 2015

More Music Reviews
Review: Grandmaster, <i>Grandmaster</i>
Review: Grandmaster, Grandmaster
Funk prog rock supergroup lures listeners through each stage of cosmic cult indoctrination

Miranda Garza, May 24, 2024

Review: Nova, <i>NovApocalypse</i>
Review: Nova, NovApocalypse
Experimental folk-pop player Nova’s sophomore release gets twisted

Laiken Neumann, May 24, 2024

More by Austin Powell
The American Analog Set’s Heavy Return and Seven More Songs From Austin Artists
The American Analog Set’s Heavy Return and Seven More Songs From Austin Artists
New music picks from Pelvis Wrestley, NOOK Turner, the Teeta, and more

Nov. 3, 2023

Review: Explosions in the Sky, <i>End</i>
Review: Explosions in the Sky, End
ATX instrumental band's seventh studio album is also its first in seven years

Sept. 29, 2023

MORE IN THE ARCHIVES
One click gets you all the newsletters listed below

Breaking news, arts coverage, and daily events

Keep up with happenings around town

Kevin Curtin's bimonthly cannabis musings

Austin's queerest news and events

Eric Goodman's Austin FC column, other soccer news

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