SXSW Showcase Reviews
Reviewed by Jim Caligiuri, Fri., March 16, 2012
Garland JeffreysThe Palm Door, Thursday, March 15
"I'm going to be 68 in June," Garland Jeffreys boasted midset, sweat on his brow. "But I bet I have more energy than you." Save for last year's Sunday night performance at the Continental Club on Alejandro Escovdeo's annual closing South by Southwest bill, Jeffreys hasn't been to Austin in years, but there was a welcome cheering for both new old and new material. Appropriately, he kicked things off with "I'm Alive," a track from his new disc and first in 13 years, The King of In Between, Jeffreys repeating the phrase over and over as if trying to convince both the listener and himself. With a band of Austinites offering support – Mark Patterson on keys and guitar, Glen Fukunaga on bass, and Billy Masters on lead guitar – he blew through "Coney Island Winter" and got cinematic with "35mm Dreams." The ska beat of the classic "Modern Lovers" found Jeffreys prowling the audience. The entire band smiled at his antics even though they were sweating, too. Despite his youthful vigor, Jeffreys is really a little long in the tooth to pull off his punky anthem "Wild in the Streets." The set ended with an extended "96 Tears," false ending and all, leaving everyone anywhere but in between.