Dale Earnhardt Jr Jr perform during SXSW.
Yesterday in Austin felt like the first true day of SXSW. The amount of shows swarming all over the city was far more intense than Tuesday. On a national level, artists like Odd Future, Lil B, Raphael Saadiq, Das Racist, Yelawolf, and Bad Brains, all played amazing shows last night that proved why none of the artists above are merely hype. The line to get into Bad Brains was nearly a mile long and it was a good reminder of why South By Southwest is such a relentless music festival. You can have multiple acts that are eventually headed to the Rock N Roll Hall of Fame playing at the exact same time all over town.
As for how the Michigan-based bands did, Dale Earnhardt Jr. Jr played a raucous show at the Phoenix last night that drew a number of industry insiders. People were talking about the show all day long yesterday in anticipation and the boys didn't disappoint. Dressed in their usual race car suits and armed with a bass, guitar, and drums, Dale E used a bevy of songs that quickly showed how talented they are. Lot's of folks all over the country have heard about the Detroit-based experimental rock band for awhile and seemed glad to finally have a chance to see them live. The cheers that the band received in between songs definitely made it hard to deny that whatever buzz is following Dale Earnhardt Jr. Jr. is real.
Shortly after Dale E showed and proved what was up, myself and Doug Coombe headed over to see Michigan-born group Binary Star kill it on a hip stage. It's been years since the duo had even seen Doug Coombe at a show so his photos, when he eventually uploads them, should catch OneBeLo and Senim Silla in good spirits. The crowd at the venue was packed and a lot of folks in the audience were mouthing every word. It's always crazy to see a group that used to record music together in 1999/2000 and then disbanded get so much love as they reunite. Ro Spit was on the wheels of steel DJing throughout their set and in-fam producer Decompoze was taken shots. It sort of felt like a mini Subterraneous reunion if only one of the best rappers in the crew, Magestik Legend would have been on hand.
Today is going to be a cluster as Danny Brown, Big Sean, Black Milk, Jon Connor, and a handful of other Michigan artists all have shows.