Sydney Wayser is one of the musicians I thank the SXSW gods for giving me. Having arrived early for Yukon Blonde's set, Sydney's voice parted the cloudy skies for a brief set that gave me a glimpse of what is surely to become a well known name. Mix Grace Potter and Maps & Atlases and you've scratched the surface. My only complaint about the set is that 30 minutes was far too short. I certainly hope that this gal comes through the Midwest so I can catch a proper set.
A member of The Big Sleep said it best when stating "we are a night band" and they are just that. A darker, muddier, slightly heavier rock band from Brooklyn that I could see playing many venues in New York late at night with a strong following of fans. I was hesitant at the beginning of the set, but the last few songs seemed like they hit there stride and the next time I'm out in one of the lovely five boroughs I hope to catch them in a dark seedy bar.
You can judge a band by how many other groups they are friends with by their mutual respect level and individual talents. With that as the standard, Yukon Blonde is very high on a list of popularity.They breathed life into the crowd and venue during their set. Seeing musicians who are not only extremely talented but also really happy to play makes all the difference in the world. They are overall great performers.
I needed my dose of Chicago and thought I would get it from seeing the guys from Yawn perform tonight, little did I know Paper Thick Walls would walk into my life. Male and female harmonizing vocals reminiscent of Of Monsters and Men with a surprise guitar wail with the occasional heavy bass and drum adds interest and relevance for a new sound. They could have easily followed a set sound of many bands already established, but instead pushed what was expected. Can't wait to check these guys out in my hometown.