Ume, the Calm Blue Sea, the Black & White Years, My Jerusalem

Highlights from first half of Free Week

Jeff Klein of My Jerusalem
Jeff Klein of My Jerusalem (Photo by Shelley Hiam)

Ume, the Calm Blue Sea, the Black & White Years, My Jerusalem

Emo's East, Jan. 4

Two years since its inception, Modern Outsider has corralled an impressively eclectic roster of Austin talent, all on display for the local imprint's Free Week showcase. Emo's bowed to the dark bellows of non-Modern Outsiders My Jerusalem, fronted by Jeff Klein and airing out November's sophomore LP, Preachers, with a powerhouse set honed from touring with X. "Born in the Belly" surged with scathing riffs into the melodic "Mono," as Klein and his quartet controlled the stage with rock star aplomb, riding jagged bursts of "Sweet Chariot" into the crowd for closer "Sleepwalking." The Black & White Years lightened up the mood with jangled, synthesized pop, diving into its catalog on "Up!" and "Power to Change," while debuting a new tune from the locals' upcoming and long-awaited second album. The foursome still proved capable of surprising, with madcap quivers and turns on "To Modern Science" and the whistling "Two Reservoirs." Pummeling percussion into epic proportions, the Calm Blue Sea dislodged its post-rock with tension-tight builds from last year's Arrivals and Departures. The addition of deeply reverbed vocals served to accent their swirling instrumental climaxes without distracting, simultaneously hypnotic and jarring in release. As expected, Ume conquered the night, the trio erupting with a well-honed "The Conductor" as Lauren Larson flailed a vicious vision in white and wrestled her guitar across the stage. The lulling thrash of "Hurricane" and "Captive" crashed into the shredding wall from "Dancing Blind" and "Burst," cementing Ume, and Modern Outsider, at the top of Austin's rock pile.

Check out our Free Week Photo Galleries.

More Ume
SXSW 2014 Records
Monuments (Record Review)

Doug Freeman, March 14, 2014

Like a Hurricane
Like a Hurricane
The agony and the ecstasy of Ume

Doug Freeman, Nov. 18, 2011

More the Calm Blue Sea
Playback: Teatro Negro
Playback: Teatro Negro
Reunions, fundraisers, performance videos – trying to rein in local music as 2012 draws to a close

Kevin Curtin, Nov. 30, 2012

Phases & Stages
The Calm Blue Sea
Arrivals and Departures (Record Review)

Kevin Curtin, Nov. 23, 2012

More Music Reviews
Texas Platters
Black Pistol Fire
Deadbeat Graffiti (Record Review)

Alejandra Ramirez, Oct. 27, 2017

Texas Platters
Leroi Brothers
Check This Action (Record Review)

Tim Stegall, Oct. 27, 2017

More by Doug Freeman
Texas Platters
David Ramirez
We're Not Going Anywhere (Record Review)

Oct. 27, 2017

Chris Stapleton’s Outlaw Triple Threat
Chris Stapleton’s Outlaw Triple Threat
Smokin’ guitar licks, howling wail, and forceful songs

Oct. 24, 2017


Ume, the Calm Blue Sea, the Black & White Years, My Jerusalem

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)