Show Review: Pinegrove @ Barracuda (9/29)

When did Pinegrove become so huge?

David Sackllah posed the question to Twitter (@dsackllah) on the eve of the band’s sold out show at Austin’s Barracuda. Sackllah goes on recalling a time not so long ago when a Pinegrove performance seemed like an under-attended and perhaps under-appreciated experience. Back then, turnouts hovered around thirty people. That was a year ago. Maybe he’s exaggerating the crowd’s smallness, but the visual goes a long way in driving the point home; Pinegrove is now suddenly huge, or at least hugely important to a lot of people.

Hit the jump for more.

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The Top ACL Undercard Acts

Unfortunately, a festival has to curate line-ups that cater to that audience, and as such, some bands unfortunately fall victim to the undercard slot…the slot before the day really gets going or on the smaller stages. Whether you see it as a slight, or just one of the many headaches with scheduling a mass festival…here are my highlights for bands on the Undercard slot (pre-2 PM).

Recent things that we loved that fit this description: Lucy Dacus, Slaves, Jose Gonzalez, Albert Hammond Jr., Rey Pila, The Rosebuds, Wild Nothing, FIDLAR, Widowspeak, Pinback, Willis Earl Beal, Gardens & Villa, and on and on…

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Show Pics: The War on Drugs @ Stubb’s (9/30)

Nicole and I are going to tag team coverage for The War on Drugs with Land of Talk at Stubb’s plus bonus coverage of King Gizzard and the Lizard Wizard at Mohawk.

NB: Saturday night was another one for the books as Austin was lit up as ever with great bands and crazy antics on Red River. My main event was at Stubb’s for The War on Drugs, touring incredible latest album, A Deeper Understanding. B. Gray was on double duty–taking killer shots of The War on Drugs and then bouncing over to The Mohawk to catch King Gizzard and the Wizard Lizard. Follow the jump to see his pretty pics and read some brief thoughts on a night at the gravel pit.

BG: Click through, y’all.

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Show Review: Arcade Fire @ The Frank Erwin Center (09/27)

Last Wednesday night had a large crowd flooding to the Frank Erwin Center for a night of music indie rock legends by the names of Arcade Fire and Wolf Parade. If you’ve been around or even somewhat paying attention to the music of the past decade, it feels like it would be an impossible feat to not recognize at least one of these two household names. While Wolf Parade has lived a fairly tame existence in terms of constant rock goodness, Arcade Fire have admittedly dabbled in controversy as of late. I wasn’t sure what to expect of the evening: would the infamous band that created Funeral and Neon Bible force its fans to pay 75 dollars to hear only new material off their less-than-good latest release Everything Now, or would they delight fans to the music that made them famous?

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Dr. Lonnie Smith Trio / Ike Stubblefield Trio @ Antone’s (9.29.17)

Rarely does the opportunity arise when a living legend makes their way through our fair city. Even rarer when 2 living legends happen to share the bill. Rarer still is the unlikely scenario where both legends are vastly proficient on the same instrument…in this case the Hammond B3 Organ. This perfect storm of unfathomable talent and unrivaled musical accomplishment took the stage at Antone’s on Friday night with Dr. Lonnie Smith and Ike Stubblefield showing in no uncertain terms why they are considered some of the best ever. Follow the jump for more on the show. Read more

Balmorhea / Caroline Says @ Stateside at the Paramount (09.22.17)

Whenever the opportunity arises to catch local instrumentalists, Balmorhea as the 6-piece live incarnation of Rob Lowe and Michael Muller’s cathartic project, we at Austin Town Hall jump all over it. Friday night’s album release party at the fantastic Stateside at the Paramount Theater stage for the band’s enthralling sixth LP, Clear Language was no exception. Follow the jump for more on the show. Read more

Show Pics: Two Door Cinema Club @ ACL Live (9/21)

We are suckers for a good pop song, especially of the British variety. I don’t think there is a band doing better work in a live setting than Two Door Cinema Club. They have been touring pretty much non-stop for the last year hitting ACL last year early in the record release cycle, now back at the end of the finishing out the festival junket.

I figured I might as well take an opportunity to get some photos, shimmy and channel my inner tween. They brought Circa Waves along. They are from Liverpyyoool.

Click through, I kinda dig these photos. I was playing with shutter speeds in stroby lights. Plus, this is the best sounding setting possible, thanks ACL Live.

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Show Pics: The Church with Helio Sequence @ 3ten (9/19)

Nostalgia acts are difficult. Ticket prices are usually higher, merch is prominent, meet and greets are “a thing” and expectations can be low. I have had several great experiences lately with bands I loved years ago coming in and performing at an insanely high level including two recent shows at 3ten with The Fixx and Midge Ure.

The Church, more to the point Steve Kilbey and a slowly evolving support band, last came through Austin for SxSW. I was always overlapped and didn’t have the chance to catch them along the way. When I saw the announcement for The Church to headline a show at 3ten, my interest level was sufficient to go on radar. When I saw the announcement that The Helio Sequence would open, I was locked in as they are one of my favorite things.

It was a good show, but not without issues. That is what we call a teaser. Click through for notes and all the pics.

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ACL 2017 Preview: Five Things To Look Forward To This Year At ACL

So we’re a little under a month away from two weekends of live music and overall good times at Zilker Park, which may seem like quite a ways out, but why not start to get excited about the staple of Austin life? Whether you’re a veteran festival goer or just moved here and this is your first year in attendance, you need to be prepared for another weekend (or two if you go hardcore) of music and festivus. So click on through the jump to check out my list of things you should be getting stoked for this year at ACL.

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