SXSW showcase reviews

Live Shots
Photo by Gary Miller


Wave Rooftop, Wednesday, March 17

Paging Pavement: Please report to the customer service desk; we have your children. Maybe it's unfair to pigeonhole Brooklyn trio Grooms, formerly known as Muggabears, as just their sonic kin. They do have a sound of their own, but Death by Audio debut Rejoicer pulls from a very distinct period of 1990s guitar school, where bands like Pavement and Polvo put effects pedals, feedback, and urban ennui up front. The 10 songs on Rejoicer steamroll through a colorful collage of rhythmic dynamics, guitarist Travis Johnson and bassist Emily Ambruso intricately yet subtly chasing each other's riffs without resting on wanky solos or "epic" jam sessions. They're all about the buildup and the blast, as live versions of the stuttering "Dreamsucker" and "At the Pool" illustrated, with new drummer Jim Sykes (Marnie Stern, Parts & Labor) acting as thrash anchor. It's not just noise: Under the squall, there's pop structure, however math-y. Kanine Records is reissuing Rejoicer soon, and, as the last half of one of their songs can tell you, "guitar feelings" are nothing to be ashamed of, as long as you take your crushes and make something new out of them.

Keep up with all our SXSW coverage at Sign up for our South-by-specific newsletter at for news, reviews, and previews delivered to your inbox every day of the Fest. And for the latest Tweets, follow @ChronSXSW.

More Music Reviews
Rock & Roll Books
Everything's Bigger in Texas: The Life & Times of Kinky Friedman
by Mary Lou Sullivan

Doug Freeman, Dec. 15, 2017

Rock & Roll Books
My Guitar Is a Camera
by Watt M. Casey Jr.

Tim Stegall, Dec. 15, 2017

More by Audra Schroeder
SXSW Interactive Conference Quick Cuts
The Signal & the Noise
Statistician Nate Silver on more data, more problems

March 15, 2013

SXSW Film Reviews: 'Kiss of the Damned'
Daily Reviews and Interviews

March 15, 2013



AC Daily, Events and Promotions, Luvdoc Answers

Breaking news, recommended events, and more

Official Chronicle events, promotions, and giveaways

Updates for SXSW 2017

All questions answered (satisfaction not guaranteed)