Last night I had a dream that I was sitting at the Driskill hotel, the beautiful southern gothic inn smack in the middle of Austin’s 6th street madness, with my boyfriend, and he was getting text messages saying that he had to come out and escort Sheryl Crow into the bar. Then she came in and demanded that the hotel comp her drinks, and the waist-coated bartender snootily informed her that the Driskill never gives out free drinks. She was mad and that was the end of the dream.
I guess after so many days in here, The Time of Year When A Lot of Bands Happen to be in Austin, TX has fully crept all the way into the back of my brain. I’ve been fully converted.
I know I said this last time but day three was definitely the best day so far. It just keeps getting better. I discovered an excellent survival trick while walking across Austin to start the day at the White Iris showcase–if you enter the convention center on 4th St. right off Red River, you can walk in the freezing air conditioning all the way to 1st and Trinity. That’s four blocks where you don’t have to sweat your ass off. It’s the little things. After that refreshing treat I headed over to Malverde, a swanky venue high above Guadalupe ave., where California surf/stoner punk rock band FIDLAR (Fuck it Dog Life’s a Risk, apparently) shredded so hard I audibly gasped when front man Zac looked like he might fling himself right over the side of the balcony.
After their set, sitting in the blazing sun drinking a vaguely tex-mex bloody mary (not so good), Zac regaled me with stories about their drive from Los Angeles to Austin. “We wanted to be ready, you know, so we bought a bunch of tabs of acid and hits of ecstacy,” he told me, in the same tone one would talk about the shoes they packed or making sure to bring enough underwear. “But then in Arizona there was this sign for a border crossing and we were like ‘fuck, man’ and pulled over. We found a spot and dug a hole and buried everything, made a map to it, and we’re gonna stop by on our way home.” When I asked if this story was something I could share on the internet, Zac responded, “Of course dude! It’s not like somebody’s going to go find it and steal it.” Rock ‘n’ Roll, people. It will never die.
After finishing my bloody mary and drinking eight glasses of water I decided it was time to press on, and started making my way east to see Glasser at the Rhapsody showcase. On the corner of Congress and 3rd who did I run into but Zinzi and Jesse of LA pop-disco band Kisses, who had flown into town for one show that night, which I would subsequently miss. Zinzi was gingerly applying Hello Kitty band-aids to her toes and fashioning some brilliant toe-less stockings (for peep toe booties) out of some drugstore knee highs. This girl is a genius. And all worth it for the end result.
Kisses was headed over to the Fort, so I left them a couple blocks later to head to Rhapsody. The outdoor space at Club De Ville was packed and the sun was going full force, so I quickly retreated to the back to get a little R&R and try and figure out how to use the Windows Phone I mentioned in my previous post. After some more chimp-like poking and banging (not really banging, but there was definitely a grunt or two) I figured not only how to turn the application buttons an extremely pleasing shade of turquoise, but also how to work the maps function. Success! I am a genius. I think actually it’s just really easy, but let a girl dream.
Across the street I went to the Spin throw down at Stubb’s. A massive affair with a stage more suited to a huge festival that what you normally see in Austin, it was a perfect place to feverishly apply sunscreen and run into everyone I’ve ever met. By day three everyone is hot, this delirious hybrid of exhausted and totally stoked, and is running from place to place like a chicken with it’s head cut off. As a result, there are some pretty impressive collections of badges and wristbands on display. The winner for yesterday with definitely MTV’s Jolina Hoang, who I’m hoping will have wristbands up to her elbows by the time this is all over.
Changing things up a bit, I crossed the street yet again (the middle three or so hours of the day took place over a one block radius) to meet a friend at Headhunters for about three minutes of a metal showcase. Earplugs in and resolve strong I plunged into the dark humid room and burst into the sun one song later, feeling surprisingly awesome. Nothing like some aggro shredding to make a lady feel alive.
I finally left Red River Street around 5 PM to prepare for Vice’s launch of their new site Noisey, an Intel sponsored effort in which bands get followed around for lengthy periods of time. Some free food and excellent company was had before Dirty Beaches took the stage to open the show, performing his haunting, Lynch style show with all the fervor of the love child of Leonard Cohen and Elvis Presley. This is the third time I’ve seen the performance since coming to Austin, and it never fails to totally freak me out in the best way ever. He was followed by Oberhofer, one of the (deservedly!) buzziest bands of the week. The band’s lead singer vaguely resembles Joe Jonas, and his toe tapping revealed argyle socks under his ankle length pants in such a way that made my little heart melt.
The rest of the night was slightly blurred by the unbelievable pain in my feet. I came home to realize there was actually a blister on the sole of my right foot, and my dear gentleman friend was kind enough to wrap them in cool towels until the aching subsided somewhat (just need to shout that one out, a good man is hard to find). Unfortunately I had missed Kisses and everything else happening that night, but it was worth it for some relief and a good night’s rest.