The Austin Chronicle

Day Party Crawl

By Darcie Stevens, March 20, 2009, Music

Insound/Hot Freaks Party

Club de Ville, Friday, March 20

Ten years after launched its website, that first online indie distributor celebrated a decade of underground success with its annual South by Southwest party. Obits stormed out of the noontime gate, wishing the near-capacity crowd a happy Nowruz, the Iranian new year, courtesy of guitarist Sohrab Habibion (Edsel), who traded vocals with former Drive Like Jehu/Hot Snake Rick Froberg. With the essence that new debut LP I Blame You (Sub Pop) lacks, Obits blasted heavy and clean, bassist Greg Simpson's Ricky thump leading the rampage throughout Kinksian closer "Back and Forth." Terribly sober labelmates Handsome Furs followed, husband and wife Dan Boeckner (Wolf Parade) and Alexei Perry wiping the sleep out of their eyes with second LP Face Control. Imagine Johnny Cougar with a drum machine. All told, it was the return of Austin's American Analog Set that gleamed. It's been 10 years since The Golden Band was released, and the fivepiece from that era, including keyboardist Tom Hoff, played the album in its entirety: no hiccups, just soothing sound. Never has a crowd been this still for an Analog set, and while the instrumentals didn't hold up as well, it was ebullient seeing Andrew Kenny's subtle head-shake balance "The Wait." Austin pride was dominant in that sun-drenched space. We may be quiet, but the silence is deafening.

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