Buffalo Black is Spike Lee-Approved and SXSW Puts North Texas Bands In The Spotlight.
One doesn't need to be an official wristband-holder to have figured out that SXSW is going down in Austin this week.
For that matter, one doesn't even have to be all that into music, necessarily, to have noticed at least some of the spillover events Dallas plays host to around this time every year.
Hell, even if you've just been paying attention to things at all, you've likely already been driven somewhat crazy by the sheer amount of times you've heard the word “spillover” this week period.
Point is, the massive music and film gathering going down a couple hours south of us on I-35 is pretty unavoidable this time of year for us. Fortunately — for the sake of some of the North Texas-based acts playing official showcases at this year's South By, anyway — many a national media outlet has taken notice of the area's local talent.
Of the more than 2,000 acts playing official showcases at this year's fest, it was local throwback rockers Dovetail that earned itself a mention in BuzzFeed's list of the “10 Bands at SXSW That You Don't Want to Miss.” That list would have been more accurate had it been called the “Nine Bands You Don't Want to Miss,” though, as Kelis was only thrown in so the writer could make a “Milkshake” joke.
Then, in a rundown of the best Texas acts performing in Austin this week, the New York Times had more than a few complimentary things to say about Dallas rock trio Oil Boom, rap outfit Yung Nation and Fort Worth rockers The Unlikely Candidates — the last of which, you might remember, scored a deal with Atlantic Records during last year's SXSW.
Hopefully, a year into that deal, things are still are still working out between The Unlikely Candidates and their label. The reason we bring it up is that Jonathan Tyler has been publicly lamenting his own band's deal with Atlantic of late, blaming them for “stifling his energy,” and legally restricting him from releasing music or accessing his own web page. Still, as he wrote on Facebook earlier this week, with the end of his deal in sight, he's already got studio time booked to record his next album. In the meantime, he's been posting new, free-to-download songs and demos on his personal Tumblr page.
But we digress. Back on the SXSW tip: Mel of the SXSW-showcasing artist The Outfit, TX had his syrupy good “Purple Diamond Tea” video featured on Noisey this week.
And while perhaps no band is getting as much pub at South By as Nintendo's Real Life Mario Kart track, it's not like acts with local ties are going wholly unnoticed either. St. Vincent, for instance, will help kick off the music portion of the proceedings at NPR's opening night showcase tomorrow night at Stubb's. Then, later in the week at Stubb's, the Toadies will perform Rubberneck from front to back for the first time ever.
Meanwhile, and somewhat impressively, Mystery Skulls found himself DJ-ing a party at Funny or Die's SXSW Clubhouse earlier this week — and in the same week that the FOD folks collaborated with President Obama, no less.
Moving on: Last night's debut of Clark Vogeler's Rubberneck flick at The Kessler isn't the only band that's gotten the documentary treatment of late. Premiering at this April's Dallas International Film Festival will be We From Dallas, a documentary that's been described by its creators as “a locally produced documentary covering the rise of hip hop culture in Dallas, TX. From the early days of KNON radio [to] the golden era of Deep Ellum.” The film features interviews from Vanilla Ice, The D.O.C., Play N Skillz, SymbolicOne, Headkrack and others. Check out the trailer below.
Another niche scene being examined on film this week is Fuck You! We Built This, a short doc on Denton's DIY scene that features interviews from Daron Beck, Wanz Dover, Nouns Group and Daniel Francis Doyle. That one can be seen in its entirety below.
Speaking of films: If all goes well for local emcee Buffalo Black, he'll see his song “Enter the Void” featured in Spike Lee's next joint. Just this morning, the director informed the local emcee that his song — which the director called both “great” and “haunting” — was a finalist for consideration for inclusion in Lee's upcoming film, Da Sweet Blood of Jesus. Check out the song below:
Elsewhere, Denton indie-rockers Blessin' will release a new album later this month via the UK label Art Is Hard Records. And Pageantry frontman Roy Robertson released his first solo track since his Wonderness EP back in 2010. Check that one out here.
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