AUSTIN – Mix St. Patricks Day with beautiful weather and a live band playing every 5 feet and you’ve got a cocktail so potent that seemingly no one in Austin can resist taking a sip.
Fortunately, there’s an oasis from the party. The IFC Crossroads House is set up on the corner of 7th St. a block east of Congress. It’s hosting a variety of events this week – the cast of MacGruber dropped in yesterday for fun and yucks and Neon Indian will be playing live in its studio in about an hour. Oh, and they’ve got free breakfast, coffee and computer access to any SXSW badge holder (thanks, IFC!)
Earlier today, while knocking back a breakfast taco, I listened to The Walkmen perform in the studio. The New Yorkers were playing new cuts from their upcoming album and sounding strong, considering they were playing at noon – which might as well be 6 a.m. for most bands.
“It’s too early to be doing that kind of stuff,” frontman Hamilton Leithauser said after a vocally taxing number.
How will his voice hold up? I’ll be able to tell tonight when I probably will be seeing them again at Stubbs (unless I stop by Dawes’ set across the street at Club DeVille). The Walkmen are part of NPR’s showcase along with Broken Bells, Sharon Jones and the Dap Kings and hometown heroes Spoon. Might duck out of that one before Spoon though – Nas is playing with Damian Marley at Emo’s up the street. Might need to get my head nod on.
A quick programming note – be sure to tune into KXT (91.7) Thursday and Friday at 4:20 and 6:20 as I will be live on the air talking about all things SXSW. Will I survive night one of music? Find out then.