Fans of free sneakers and buzzworthy bands like Bishop Allen, Midlake, and Cold War Kids gathered Thursday afternoon (March 15) at Schubas 11th Annual SXSW Round-Up at Yard Dog (1510 S. Congress), co-sponsored by Spin, Miller, Saucony, Maxell, and Yard Dog.
Chicago’s the 1900s kicked off the party with songs crammed with dreamy boy-girl harmonies that alternated from rafter-shaking rock to dusty alt-country. Elvis Perkins in Dearland followed, recreating a ragged old-time sound with the aid of a harmonica, bird whistle, and strap-on drum. The stripe-wearing troubadour crooned shambling tunes from his debut release, Ash Wednesday, that were at once poetic and bleak. French-speaking band the Prototypes played next, segregating their chugging, sneering punk with polite “merci’s” in between songs. Meanwhile, David Vandervelde and the Moon Station House Band launched a stream of blistering Stones-inspired tracks, and the long-haired retro rockers drawled that the show was the ‘second practice’ for their new lineup.
The crowd surged for party favorite Cold War Kids, whose blues-drenched performance was filled with dirges of regret and promises to be a better man. Yet the impassioned set was more than just Delta-based despondency. “Feel free to swing from the rafters,” they encouraged the audience, who were clearly elated to be witnessing the spectacle. GINNY YANG / PHOTOS BY CHAD WADSWORTH