As for the Rest: …other acts that caught our eyes (and ears) at SXSW 2014!

A typical day at SXSW, if done correctly, is spent running around, catching as much music as is humanly possible. Sometimes this means you catch very brief performances of bands; a song here, a song there. Here’s “the best of the rest” from my SXSW experience. The bands I caught briefly but left a lasting impression.

Artist: 3BALLMTY
Location: Spotify House
Date: 11th March

Verdict: Spacey with sexy beats, this electronic duo had the room dancing. I was immediately drawn into their performance, which seemed to be quite technical given all the knobs they were playing with. But ultimately the music was simply inspired you to move, and sometimes there’s nothing more you need than that.

Artist: Fuel Fandango
Location: Sounds from Spain Day Party
Date: 12th March

Verdict: What a fantastic voice from Nita Acosta, supported by a guitarist, drummer and some sounds out of the computer! Their high energy rock and roll makes you dance, with really accessible music – in spite of the fact it would be hard to fit it in the box of one genre over another, and they switch from Spanish to English throughout. Something about it just makes it hard to ignore. Check them out! Here’s a bit of footage to get you started:

Artist: Hunter Hunted
Location: Empire, Governors Ball Party
Date: 12th March

Verdict: This Californian band were impressive. They struck me as rawer version of a band like Fun. That melodic, indie pop that makes you want to get on your feet and move about… without the over production.

Artist: Connan Mockasin
Location: New Zealand Day Party
Date: 12th March

Verdict: Playing as a five piece, the recent touring companion of Charlotte Gainsbourg had a beautiful sound, and was one of the most talked about acts of SXSW this year, at least from the crowd I was surrounding myself with. Layered, ethereal and all kinds of wonderful, I have to give particular mention to the impressive moves by his bassist. He did get to tour Australia with Radiohead, you might remember. So applause for the artist is coming from high places…

Artist: Hozier
Location: Communion Showcase, St. David’s Church
Date: 14th March

Verdict: I couldn’t get anywhere near the room, but thankfully they kept the doors open to we could listen in the queue. The group had an interesting mix of influences going on, though ultimately the most important thing to mention is the stellar voice and the solid guitar work.

Artist: The Magic Numbers
Location: Swing House, Day Showcase
Date: 14th March

Verdict: This was one of those moments where I was running past a venue, heard a Magic Numbers song blasting out, thought oh it COULDN’T be…, ran inside and indeed, there they were! I didn’t even know they were doing anything at the moment. But there you go… such is the magic (no pun intended) of SXSW. They sounded fantastic as always, though were playing to just a handful of people! Can’t wait for the fourth album…

Larry Heath

Founding Editor and Publisher of the AU review. Currently based in Toronto, Canada. You can follow him on Twitter @larry_heath or on Instagram @larryheath.