ACL Preview: Mason Jennings

Mason Jennings has been through his ups and downs as a songwriter, but mostly he’s been on the ups. His incredible vocals always lead those in his mass followings, such as Issac Brock of Modest Mouse, to a pleasurable listening experience. The crowds at Austin City Limits will surely be witness to his magic when he takes to the Austin Ventures stage this Saturday at 6:30. Read more after the jump.. Read more

ACL Battles: CSS vs. Man Man

Round two of our ACL battles pits Brazilian dance/pop band CSS vs. Philly artist Man Man.  This is our earliest battle of the festival weekend with both bands playing at 3:30 on Saturday.  CSS will be gettin’ it down on the AT&T Blue Room stage while Man Man plays on the Dell stage.  So the question is simple: Power pop goodness from the ipod commercial makin’ CSS or get a little more intense with war paint wearin’ Man Man?  Tell us who you’re seeing and why.  Both bands most recent singles are below:

[audio:http://austintownhall.com/wp-content/uploads/2008/09/02-rat-is-dead-rage.mp3]

Download: CSS – Rat is Dead (Rage) [MP3]

[audio:http://austintownhall.com/wp-content/uploads/2008/09/manman4.mp3]

Download: Man Man – Big Trouble [MP3]

ACL Battles: MGMT vs. Spiritualized

Okay, so I personally think this may be the toughest choice to make of the festival.  On one side, you’ve got a very young band in MGMT who have only had major success since the release of their superb second album Oracular Spectacular in 2007.  On the other hand, Spiritualized are coming up on twenty years of existence and have been seeing success since before members of MGMT were in middle school.  Both bands will be playing at 5:30 on Saturday on the AT&T Blue Room stage and the Dell stage respectively.  You have a choice between the psych-pop of MGMT or the space rock of Spiritualized.  What’s it gonna be?

[audio:http://austintownhall.com/wp-content/uploads/2008/09/04-electric-feel.mp3]

Download: MGMT – Electric Feel [MP3]

[audio:http://austintownhall.com/wp-content/uploads/2008/09/spiritualized_-_soul_on_fire.mp3]

Download: Spiritualized – Soul on Fire [MP3]

ACL Preview: Hot Chip

By this point in time, we’ve all heard about Hot Chip many times before, or at least I hope they have done a fly-by on your radar. Well, this bunch of Brits are here to brighten up your ACL experience on Friday afternoon. Expect this to be a hot-spot for those in the know, and since I’ve alerted you, you are now one of those privileged people! Grab more info after the jump.

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Town Hall ACL Battles: Manu vs. Mars

Town Hall ACL  Battles is another feature we will be bringing you everyday leading up to the festival this weekend. The idea is fairly simple: two bands, same time slot, same day, who ya gonna pick? Feel free to leave comments on why you should or shouldn’t see each band represented in our “battles”. Now obviously we can’t hit every single conflict over 5 days so don’t be offended if we miss something. These are “the big ones”. Our first battle pits Manu Chao vs. Mars Volta both headlining around 8:30 on Friday. The schedule does have Mars Volta ending at 9:30 and Manu ending at 10 but were talking about opposite ends of the park (AMD and AT&T stages). It might take you 30 minutes just to get from one side to the other this late in the day. So, Sunday at 8:30, where ya gonna be? Getting your face melted by the prog-rock of Mars Volta? Or jammin’ to the world sounds of Manu Chao? If you need a little assistance, we have the most recent singles of both bands. Ding Ding.

[audio:http://austintownhall.com/wp-content/uploads/2008/09/rollingstone_download_manuchao_politikskills.mp3]

Download: Manu Chao – Politik Kills[MP3]

[audio:http://austintownhall.com/wp-content/uploads/2008/09/04-wax-simulacra.mp3]

Download: Mars Volta – Wax Simulacra [MP3]

ACL Preview: Colour Revolt

This being the week leading up to ACL, we’re going to preview the Festival by offering you a feature of a few bands we’re pumped about seeing. We’ll try to keep it to bands that might be a little left of center or not quite on everyone’s radar. Today, we take a quick look at Colour Revolt out of Oxford, Mississippi. A short bio, song preview and a ton of links after the jump.

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Xemumba ’08 Afterthoughts

The Latin music festival known as Xemumba can best be summarized as an audio/visual extravaganza that takes hold of your senses and never lets go. One minute you’re sipping on a beer listening to the latest salsa coming out of Cuba, and then your running upstairs to watch the UT ballet folklorico cuttin’ a rug. Oh and then you have tasty South American treats to munch on, while watching a Spanish documentary made by local film makers. Xemumba even had opportunities to help out less fortunate young hispanic girls in the community. Not impressed yet? After the jump is a quick review of each band we saw on Friday at the festival with photos (Saturday unfortunately was postponed to a later date. We’ll of course let you know when the event is rescheduled). 

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The New Year Ticket Giveaway

ATH is teaming up with Touch and Go Records to give away 2 tickets to the upcoming The New Year show at Emo’s on Saturday, September 20th. If you read our recent review of their new self-titled album, you know this is a must see event. The contest is simple. In the comments section, tell us why you want to see The New Year this weekend. We’ll judge the best responses, and announce the winner on Thursday, September 18th. 

I Saw Death Vessel at Emos

After months and months of spinning this album in my room I was finally able to put a face to the band. Sure, I had seen a few pictures of Joel Thibodeau, frontman and main songwriter of Death Vessel, but I desperately needed to put a face to that voice that continuously haunted the speakers on the floor next to my IKEA bed. Read the full story after the jump. Read more

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