Tag Archives: Kodaline

Kristen’s SXSW ’13 Mix – Part 7 – Haley Bonar, Kodaline, Frank Turner

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SXSW is my favorite time of the year for collecting new artists to watch. Far be it from me to keep these gems to myself. Here are some of bands and songs I discovered this year:

 

19. Haley Bonar – “Bad Reputation”

I was attracted to the tone of Haley Bonar’s voice. It stuck out in a sea of voices while I was going through all the SXSW announced artists and got this Minnesotan a spot on my best of SXSW playlist.

 

20. Kodaline – “All I Want”

These Dubliners made it into one of my top sets of SXSW, partly due to the circumstances surrounding my first seeing them and partly due to their intoxicating tunes like this one. The way this song builds gets me every time. A Kodaline show = a magical experience.

 

21. Frank Turner – “I Still Believe”

I had heard of Frank Turner prior to SXSW 2013, but I hadn’t given him a proper listen. I saw two of his sets this year and, especially the one with The Sleeping Souls, they could be described as one of the more energy-packed, empowering sets I’ve seen. Turner has an impressive ability to stir a crowd into fist-pumping madness. Giving his tunes a few listens, I can tell why. His recently released album, Tape Deck Heart, is packed full of gems.

 

~ Kristen

Top 10 Sets of SXSW 2013

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It’s been a couple weeks, but people are still asking about our SXSW highlights. We did our best to boil it all down to our top sets of the week.

Amanda’s picks: 

1. Semi Precious Weapons at The Main

I know I haven’t regaled you with the story of how I inadvertently got kicked out of the last Semi Precious Weapons show at Sayer’s Club after only two and a half songs. The gist is that I got jilted on my last Semi Precious Weapons experience and I was anxious for a full and proper show. Despite being tired, sore, and taking some time to rest before going out again the excitement of seeing Semi Precious Weapons lead to some pre-show room dancing as well as putting on some eyeliner for the occasion. Can you tell I was excited? Of course they delivered an amazing show full favorites such as “Drink” and “Free Booze” as well some new tunes like “Aviation High” we can expect to hear off their new forthcoming album. Even though they have a new sense of style, Semi Precious Weapons are as fantastic as ever. Like fellow show goer and friend Trina said, “it’s like falling in love all over again.”

2. Sir Sly at Empire Automotive

Not much is known about Sir Sly but they have to be one of the most buzzed about bands I’ve heard about lately. According to a source of mine, they are composed of session players who decided to start a band. How novel! They had a residency here in San Diego in February and my friend Lauren fell in love with them. I knew they were something I had to check out and I finally got to see them at Empire Automotive. Admittedly, I wasn’t really sure how I would feel after seeing multiple keyboards being set up on stage because really, who needs two keyboards? They were nothing like I had expected and everything I had hoped for all at once. It’s obvious all the good buzz was fully justified for this band. I can’t wait to see where they go from here.

3. Moon Taxi at Sennheiser + Paste Interactive Studio and Lounge at The Blackheart

With a name like Moon Taxi, one conjures up images of a psychedelic synth oriented band full of ooooohs and aaaaahhhh. Or maybe it’s just me. However, Moon Taxi was the first band I saw of SXSW and they were a great way to kick off the week of music. With vocals reminiscent of early Kings of Leon combined with a pop rock edge, they were a fun and groovy band to dance with.  While admittedly I adore the singer’s smiling eyes and gorgeous hair, I was really enamored with their lyrics. My favorite song of their was “Mercury” but their whole set was fun. I enjoyed them so much that I made sure to catch another set.

4. Willy Moon at the Skype Party at The Belmont

The name Willy Moon didn’t register at all in my brain. I was sitting at the Belmont waiting for The Neighbourhood and was enjoying his set while sitting inside. It wasn’t until I heard his song from the iPod commercial that I jumped up and realized I knew who this was! I was even more surprised to see him in a fashionable suit dancing and jumping around while he was singing. It was his last show of SXSW but I never would have guessed it with his crazy live energy. I was really impressed with his show and love his genre bending tunes. I can’t wait for him to get back here so I can see a full set and enjoy the show properly and without walking induced foot pain.

5. Butch Walker at Rachel Ray’s Feedback at Banger’s

I knew of Butch Walker only in passing as an artist’s artist and as the guy who had produced and written for other bands and artists I loved. Earlier that day I caught the screening of his documentary so I had some knowledge of the man behind the music but this was my first time seeing him play. I adored his story telling between songs and of various songs. That’s always a characteristic I enjoy in an artist. I recognized some of his songs from the documentary I saw earlier which made it all the more enjoyable. After seeing him play, I’m making it a point to acquire his music. Such a great artist!

HM: Blackout Party

San Diego’s own Blackout Party made the trek to SXSW to tear up the place. I only managed to catch their last show at Wahoo’s Fish Taco’s (random right?) but they brought their A game! The set ended with a broken guitar after using it to play on a cymbal. No big deal.

Kristen’s Picks:

1. Leogun at VEVO TV Control Room

This show was so good I found myself doing the eyes closed sway. It was perhaps my 5th time seeing British rockers Leogun since I declared them an LMN band love back in October and it was the best (and longest) set I’ve seen them do. The venue was ideal and the audience was in a jovial mood, the last official night of SXSW. My feet had numbed to the walking-induced pain and were ready and willing to dance…and dance I did with a couple of my friends experiencing the band for the first time. Afterwards, I didn’t feel pressure to run off to another show so I hung out for a bit with friends both new and old. It was an idyllic SXSW experience.

2. twenty one pilots at The Nikon/Warner Sound Party at The Belmont

twenty one pilots was my number one band going into the SXSW experience and my number one coming out. I saw them three times and each show was a heart-stopping, fist pounding experience better than the last. The genre-defying duo may have a bit of a shtick, but to me it never gets old. Instead, it becomes the challenge to memorize and capture…I’m pretty sure I took more pictures of this band than everyone else combined.  I’d have to say the set at the Nikon/Warner Sound Party at The Belmont was my favorite.  At one point twp singer, Tyler Joseph, suddenly appeared on ledge of the balcony I was standing on, shocking me into propelling my arms forward into the guy perilously traversing an 8 inch ledge…thankfully he was too “in the zone” to even notice. Also, this venue seemed to have more “fans” and the energy and enthusiasm in the room was a proper fit for a twenty one pilots show.

3. Kodaline at place unknown

I only caught the last two songs of the set from this Dublin-based group, but those two songs (one being the heart-lifting “All I Want”) made my week. I had planned on seeing a proper Kodaline set a day or two before at The Hype Hotel. I got terribly lost and was running late, but I was relieved when I got to the venue to find the band hadn’t started yet. The relief turned to frustration which turned to panic as about an hour after the band was supposed to begin, they had yet to play a note. I had other places I had to be! I stuck it out for the first song and it only took about 20 seconds for me to fall in love with the band whose music can best be described as “soul-warming”. It was very hard to leave and I would have been haunted by that decision had it not been for the happiest of accidents when I wandered past a venue (still unknown) with Kodaline unexpectedly playing on the patio. This moment best exemplifies what I love most about SXSW.

4. Bastille at The British Music Embassy

I feel like I’ve been waiting a very very long time to see Bastille. SXSW 2013 marked the first time the band has played in the US and the entire room was a-buzz with anticipation. I think it was mostly Brits who knew what an amazing deal it was to see this band in such a small space, but regardless, the mood was electric and incredibly energizing. Then the band came on and exceeded my already lofty expectations. I heard all the songs I wanted to hear. I saw the most amazing shirt of the week. Actually, upon reflection, the whole set was a bit like a dream. I’m not entirely sure it happened as it was too good to be true. In my memory, the experience is just a bright glowing orb of happiness.

5. Kassidy at The British Music Embassy

Kassidy was one of the many bands I listened to in preparation for SXSW that went on my “to check out” list. The plan was to squeeze in a few songs from their set at The British Embassy in between Atlas Genius and CHVRCHES….I mean, the venue was en route. I’d been doing a pretty good job sampling bands, a couple songs here and a couple there, but half a song into Kassidy’s set I was completely hooked and knew I wasn’t going anywhere. I mean, I tried. I even walked to the back of the room at one point, but I couldn’t seem to leave the building and slowly drifted back up front. It was like a gravitational pull. There was something about the four gentlemen on stage with their acoustic guitars and harmonies…they didn’t even need drums! I’m not sure how much of the set I caught, but it was one of my favorites. Bonus points for the guy in the band wearing my watch, also on the wrong hand…

HM: The Stone Foxes at Rusty’s

The Stone Foxes put on one of the most engaging and energetic live shows, it’s impossible not to have a good time. This particular set, I ended up providing background vocals for a song. It was quite a memorable moment.

Other Notable Sets:

SXSW ’13 – Day 5

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You know SXSW is nearly over when your evenings go from hitting up 2-3 venues/hour to getting to one show/hour to finding one venue and staying there all evening. Well, tonight, my feet decided they were done with the crazy walking so I went to Blackheart and there I stayed for three sets in a row. Wow. Even though all the music was good, my mind regrets all that could have been had I had the capacity to venue hop all night.

But I shouldn’t complain. I did get to see a few bands today. After a brief stop for Irish Breakfast at BD Riley’s, I started my day at The Quantum Party at Whole Foods where I got to catch one of my new favorites, The Wild Feathers. I also briefly popped across the street for one of my old favorites, Frightened Rabbits (I really am loving their new album). Afterwards, I ventured back to Filter’s party at Cedar Street Courtyard where I was able to dance with Brodka and Haerts. Then I simply crossed the street to a cool bar called Oil Tin Harry’s where I caught a bit of Philly’s Zelazowa. It’s a shame that not many people joined me as the brothers of Zelazowa had some great new tunes…

Frightened Rabbit at Waterloo The Wild Feathers

The absolute highlight of my day happened when I was leaving Oil Tin Harry’s to meet Amanda at J. Black’s for The Dunwells. For some backstory, the biggest disappointment of my yesterday was the fact that The Hype Hotel was running over an hour late and I was only able to catch a couple songs of Irish band Kodaline. This wouldn’t be a huge issue except all it took was about 20 seconds of one song for me to fall in love with the band. Leaving was difficult. Then today, a SXSW miracle occurred when I walked past Kodaline playing in a small bar. I still wasn’t able to catch more than a couple of songs, but now at least in total, I’ve almost seen half a set!

Kodaline

The rest of my afternoon included a lovely set by the always charming The Dunwells, singing every word along with Andrew McMahon for Something Corporate’s “I Woke Up In a Car”, and an invigorating walk back to the East side to catch some of the Swinghouse event at Rusty’s and a little Reignwolf at Peckerheads. Somehow, at The Swinghouse event I ended up back-up singer for The Stone Foxes (as long as there is no video evidence, I say that was kinda awesome). So, I guess this marks my SXSW singing debut…

Andrew McMahonThe Stone Foxes

After a happy hour at Moonshine, I decided the best course of action was to sit for a bit in some comfy chairs on the 18th floor of the Hilton Garden inn and listen to Irishman, Declan O’Rourke. Then I took a deep breath and began my night. We caught Sir Sly at Empire Automotive and a second round of Young Guns at Dirty Dog Bar (which, I must say, it not one of my favorite venues) before I headed to Blackheart for the one, two, three punch of Glossary, Jim Lockery & The Solemn Sun, and Frank Turner who, as expected, was an amazing performer. It was the perfect way to close the day and I can’t wait to do it again tomorrow.

Sir Sly Frank Turner

Speaking of the last official day of SXSW, here are some of my recommendations for Saturday the 16th: 

11am- The Never Clock Out Party featuring Ivan & Alyosha (12:30), BOY (1:30), Bernhoft (2:30), The Wild Feathers (3pm), and Civil Twilight (3:30)

4pm- Super Water Sympathy at Firehouse Lounge

5:15- Kassidy at Doc Motoworks

8:15- The Neighbourhood at The Belmont

9:20- Free Energy at The Iron Bear

10pm- Bronze Radio Return at Rebels Honkey Tonk

10:45- Leogun at VEVO TV Control Room

12:50- Frank Turner at Cedar Street Courtyard

 

Did I just plan your day for you? I think I did…

Whatever you end up doing, make the most of your last day at SXSW!

~ Kristen

Kristen’s LA Concert Calendar: 1/28-1/3

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Yesterday I was able to check “go to Big Bear” off my LA bucket list. Actually I was able to check try downhill skiing off my list as well. I was pleasantly surprised at how music-friendly the mountain was. I walked up to the resort to one of my favorite Switchfoot songs, had lunch with some Band of Skulls and Imagine Dragons, and throughout the afternoon heard snippets of live music from the various bands. It was very tempting to give up the snow and skis for a smoothie and some live tunes.

This week, quite frankly, has too many shows I “need” to attend. Honestly, there is at least one thing every night that I’m super pumped about. I am going to have to make some difficult choices, so if anyone has anything to say to sway me in a particular direction, let me know. The one choice I will have no troubles making is Wednesday night. The Viper Room. Dead Sara. Need I say more?

As for everything else, here’s what I’ve got:

Monday: Oedipus at The Viper Room (10pm)
ALSO: Deluka at Harvard and Stone (10:30)
ALSO: Lisa Loeb FREE at Central SAPC (8:30)
ALSO: Aly Tadros & Irvin Dally at The Hotel Cafe (8pm)
ALSO: It’s a School Night featuring Urban Cone, Tom Odell and Wildcat!Wildcat! FREE at Bardot (9pm)
ALSO: Monday Monday FREE at Room 5 featuring Clare Means, Terra Naomi, Jackie Does Joel, and many more (8pm)

Tuesday: Nina Nesbitt and Kodaline at The Hotel Cafe (7pm)
ALSO: The Ten Thousand at Amplyfi (11pm)
ALSO: Urban Cone at Bootleg Bar (11pm)
ALSO: The Basement Sessions FREE at Hemingway’s featuring SHEL (9pm)
ALSO: Beachwood Tuesdays FREE at The Piano Bar featuring The Filthy Souls and Foster Timms (9pm)

Weds: Ritapalooza (Benefit Show) at The Viper Room featuring Dead Sara and more (7pm) http://viperroom.com/?page_id=8362
ALSO: Kyle Nicolaides at Room 5 (9pm)
ALSO: TWLOHA’s Heavy and Light Tour at The House of Blues Sunset featuring Jon Foreman and Fiction Family (7pm)

Thursday: The Ten Thousand and Raheem Cohen at Lyric Theater (9pm)
ALSO: Sweet Talk Radio, Meiko, My Name is You at The Hotel Cafe (8,9,10)
ALSO: The Howls at Formosa Cafe (8pm)
ALSO: Lowlight and La La La Birdtime at The Spare Room (10,11)
ALSO: Sonia Rao at WitZend (10pm)
ALSO: SHEL at Formosa Cafe (8pm)
ALSO: Tristan Prettyman at The Troubadour (9pm)
ALSO: Two Gallants at Bootleg Bar (10pm)
ALSO: Petty Cash at The Viper Room (11pm)

Friday: Queen Caveat at Saint Rocke (9pm)
ALSO: Irontom at O’Brien’s Pub (10pm)
ALSO: Amie Miriello at The Hotel Cafe (8pm)
ALSO: Icarus Landing FREE at House of Blues Sunset (8pm)
ALSO: Justin Hopkins at WitZend (11pm)
ALSO: Tegan and Sara at Club Nokia (9pm)

Saturday: Augustana (Acoustic) at The Troubadour (10pm)
ALSO: Creepshow at The Hotel Cafe (10pm)
ALSO: Otis Heat at The Mint (11:30)

Sunday: The Short Eyes at The Smell

 

To Keep in Mind:
Feb. 5th and 6th: Kris Allen at The Hotel Cafe
Feb. 7th: Haim at The House of Blues
Feb. 7th: The Grammy Foundation’s Pay It Forward Event at The Saban Theater featuring Ed Sheeran, LP, Leann Rimes, Emmylou Harris, etc.
Feb. 8th: The Stone Foxes at The El Rey
Feb. 9th: Ed Sheeran at Hollywood Palladium
Feb. 12th: Ellie Goulding at Hollywood Palladium
Feb. 13th: Papa Roach at Club Nokia
Feb. 13th: Dear Boy at The Troubadour
Feb. 17th: Ed Sheeran at Nokia Theatre LA Live
Feb. 20st: twenty one pilots at The Troubadour
Feb. 21st: The Shakers at The Roxy
Feb. 26th: Anberlin at The House of Blues Sunset
Feb. 28th: Matthew Perryman Jones at Bootleg Bar
Feb. 28th: Jukebox the Ghost at The Echo
March 5th: Marcus Foster at The Troubadour
March 5th: Mother Mother at The Viper Room
March 8th: Boy at The Troubadour
March 12th: CHVRCHES at The Echo
March 13th: Frightened Rabbit at The Music Box
March 15th: Anais Mitchell at McCabe’s
March 20th: Nico Vega, Atlas Genius, and Imagine Dragons at The Wiltern
March 24th: Janis Ian at McCabe’s
April 20th: Tyrone Wells and Wakey!Wakey! at The Troubadour
April 23rd: The Revival Tour at The El Rey
May 18-19th: Overture Con at The Mint
June 1st: Black Rebel Motorcycle Club at The Wiltern
August 19th/20th: Ed Sheeran at The Staples Center

~ Kristen

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