Best of KUTX – March 2017
For Austin hip-hop artist Anastasia, music is much more than a form of entertainment. It is a way to bring communities together, a means of political and personal empowerment, and…alright…a damn good party starter. With nearly a decade of performing and emceeing under her belt, Anastasia recently turned her talents towards helping women and girls find their voice through music with her non-profit CAKE (Creativity Abundance Knowledge Elevation). That drive to lift up those around her is immediately apparent in her new EP Born to Love You.
Born out of the musical hotbed of the Texas and Louisiana Gulf Coast, Kevin Russel a.k.a. Shinyribs has been spreading the swamp-pop gospel in Austin for the better part of three decades. First with his band The Gourds, and now as his musical persona Shinyribs. For his recent visit to Studio 1A Shinyribs pulled out all the stops and brought along his friends, Winfield Cheek on Keyboards, Keith Langford on Drums, Jeff Brown on Bass, the Tijuana Trainwreck Horns, and The Shiny Soul Sisters – Sally Allen & Alice Spencer. Kevin and krewe were here help promote the brand new Shinyribs record I Got Your Medicine released February 24th. Strap yourself in and enjoy the Shinyribs experience caught live in Studio 1A.
When you hear the words “Star Parks,” it could either be a hip new bar/planetarium at the Domain featuring $15 watered down cocktails whose names come from unclever puns on constellation titles, or an awesome local laid-back psych rock group whose music sounds like the advice of a good friend. Thank our lord and savior Stevie Ray Vaughn it’s the latter. Star Parks is the brain-child of frontman Andy Bianculli, a singer and songwriter whose made the rounds in many groups around town, most notably the Preservation. This most recent project is his own reminder not to dwell on negativity. The music is spacey and somewhat ethereal, but the lyrics are down to earth and poignant.
There is something distinctly Texan about Greg Vanderpool’s music. Not the stereotypical cowboy boots and big belt buckle Texan, but the Texas of wide open spaces, tall tales, and larger than life characters. It’s less a sound than a state of mind. On his 2nd solo album, Pilot, Vanderpool uses these broad strokes to illustrate the ups and downs of life with a rawer, more open, and honest approach than his previous work with Milton Mapes and Monahans. Get a sample of Greg Vanderpool’s new music with his recent visit to Studio 1A and be sure to check out the new album Pilot when it comes out Friday, April 6th.
Indie/Folk/Blues/Americana/Grunge/Psych/Rock outfit OJR shook our brains with his set at the Four Seasons this year. His 2015 release Nashville Demos can’t and won’t stop playing in the studio here at KUTX.
Maggie Rogers was one of the most exciting acts of SXSW 2017, and we were lucky enough to have her in at the four seasons this year. Her album Now that the Light is Fading is certainly one not to miss, and we’re glad we caught it!
English rock group Temples might look like they belong in an episode of Scooby-doo, but their music is as contemporary as it comes. Their set at the Four Seasons this year was unreal, and we were lucky to have them!
- A sense of humor.
- Impeccable songwriting and production.
- Extreme amounts of people on stage; I’m talkin’ either 137 sweaty people in banana costumes, or 2.5 toddlers in train conductor uniforms.
Sweet Spirit has it all, and then some. The group grew out of the primordial Austin music ooze about three years ago inspired by Sabrina Ellis’ (Bobby Jealousy, A Giant Dog) disintegrating relationships. Since then they’ve been shooting up the local music charts. I actually don’t think that exists, but if it did, Sweet Spirit would be shooting up them. Their sound is somewhat familiar; female lead singer of an indie rock group. But at the same time, there’s something intangible about their tunes that push them into the realm of mythical local bands that make it big, we’re talkin’ Spoon, Black Angels, and White Denim status. Sweet Spirit has a new album, St. Mojo, coming out on April 7th, but they stopped by Studio 1A to delight a live audience with a set of tracks both old and new.