It’s the beginning of the year, and that means only one thing to Austin music fans: Free Week. While it’s more than just a week now, it’s still a time to hear your favorite local act, or find your next favorite local act. One of those bands is called Startographers, and the four-piece opens up a Free Week show tonight at The ND.
Yours truly first happened upon Startographers when I saw them play a wall-shaking house-party show earlier in December. They passed out ear plugs before they went on, and it was darn good thing, because you could probably hear ’em clear from South Austin to San Antonio. Despite the decibels, the band’s songs, which call to mind acts like My Bloody Valentine, have an impressive tunefulness. And through the overdrive and reverb, Startographers have ears for hooks. Matt McCandless’s drumming is athletic, and the band’s front line strikes an impressive figure with guitarists Ian Lund and Michael Pawlowicz (who also sings lead) on the wings and bassist Katherine Peters front-and-center.
Before you head to the show tonight, take a sec to check out “All That I Have Now.” It’s a preview of what you’ll be hearing when they put out a release this spring. The song uses sturdy rock (with some grunge thrown in for good measure) for its bones, but there’s enough room to breathe for gentle atmospherics. The combination makes for a song with all the right hooks.