The MetalSucks SXSW Metal Recap: Friday, March 15
Number of bands seen: 10 (Batillus, Inter Arma, Royal Thunder, True Widow, Goatwhore, Young Widows, Today is the Day, Mondo Generator, Orange Goblin, Trash Talk)
Biggest surprise: BOATWHORE
Number of tacos consumed: BOATWHORE
No disrespect to all the fantastic bands I saw on the Friday of SXSW, but they all paled in comparison to seeing Goatwhore on a riverboat, aka BOATWHORE. The entire afternoon beforehand amounted to killing time before Boatwhore, and the entire night afterwards amounted to winding down from Boatwhore. The sunset cruise on the Colorado River was beyond epic.
But first: I did get to see some fantastic bands in the daytime. I only caught a half song of Batillus’ set when I saw them Wednesday afternoon — and said half song was a highlight of that day — so I relished the opportunity to soak in an entire performance of theirs on Friday. They did not disappoint. Batillus are so fucking tight and locked in right now, and I don’t know what else I can say about the band that I haven’t already said that’ll get you to check them out, either on record or live. Stream their new album Concrete Sustain right here and see if it’s for you.
A bit off the beaten path, both figuratively and literally, were True Widow playing at Rock of Ages Tattoo. The band harkens back to a time when guitars were fuzzy and drums were loose and “alternative” still meant alternative. Dinosaur Jr. and Sonic Youth are obvious influences, but True Widow heavy it up a bit and make it feel more modern. Look for this band to drop a record on Relapse Records at some point later this year.
BOATWHORE. Words cannot describe. Imagine a private party with 129 of your closest friends, free booze, free food, 75 degree weather, sunny, at sunset… AND FUCKING GOATWHORE PLAYING WHILE YOU’RE GLIDING DOWN A RIVER ON A BOAT. Big thanks to IndieMerchStore for putting on one of the most unforgettable events in SXSW history. I think even the band members were in awe of this unique experience, culminating in the 10-minute long procession of thousands upon thousands of BATS flying out from underneath a bridge as the sun was going down and Goatwhore finished up with “Apocalyptic Havoc.”
From thereon out things get blurry, as tends to be the case when open bars are involved. We headed to Red 7 for the Tone Deaf showcase and caught the end of Young Widows and all of Today is the Day’s set, both of whom I think I remember enjoying. Mondo Generator were incredibly disappointing and sad. We watched our friend suck face with a rando in the corner for two hours. I may or may not have offended more than one person with my two-day showerless stench. After that we headed over to The Mohawk to watch Trash Talk close out the night in a flurry of mosh. That band is always a good time.
In conclusion: BOATWHORE.