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SXSW Rundown: Kimbra Killed It

Yesterday marked the first proper day of the SXSW music festival. Since the number of fun-sounding festivities, concerts, parties and after-parties is completely and utterly overwhelming, and we are of slightly delicate dispositions, our strategy was to see where the wind took us...  

We decided to start the day on the East Side of town. Which meant that we caught Light Asylum, the Brooklyn-based "cold wave" duo comprised of Shannon Funchess and Bruno Coviello, at The Echo, Echoplex & Origami Vinyl SXSW Throwdown at Shangri-La.

There were a lot of girls who looked like this there. 

We then meandered down to Rainey Street, where stumbled into a Goodnight Records party at Bar 96, and caught Brooklyn-based, Austin-bred ...Trail of Dead. These boys still got it!

of-monsters-and-men-4.jpgThen while getting a smoothie at Juan Pelota cafe, we realized that the bike shop next door, Mellow Johnny's, was the scene of an Of Monsters and Men concert, sponsored by KEXP. The Icelandic six-piece play jangly, super-catchy, Mumford and Sons-esque folk pop. You probably know this song.

Lead singer Nanna Bryndís Hilmarsdóttir

The crowd, which skewed on the young (read: braces-clad) side.

Then it was off to the Warner Sound showcase at La Zona Rosa, where we caught insanely talented pop-hits-songwriter-turned-singer-songwriter-in-her-own-right L.P. The pint-sized, mop-topped singer has a voice on her. Though it's hard to see her in this picture, stay tuned for the next issue of PAPER, where you'll be able to see a better picture of her ; )

A few mediocre bands whose names we will not mention played next, and then, our favorite discovery of the evening, New Zealand pop wunderkind Kimbra took to the stage, for what she said was her first show in the United States. Here she is looking RIGHT AT US.


kimbra-6.jpgWe've been hankering for a new, slightly-weird, super-dynamic female pop star to get behind, and we think we've found her! Her debut album is out in here in the States in late May.

Look, it's Carson Daly! He was co-hosting a showcase with Sony at Red 7. Here he is about to introduce Lee Fields. 

Here's legendary soul man Lee Fields, playing with his band The Expressionists. For those who weren't able to catch him in Austin, do yourself a favor and see him when he plays Music Hall of Williamsburg this Saturday. 

We then caught some tunes by Brooklyn-based blues-rockers Alberta Cross before our legs literally felt like they would fall off and we dragged ourselves home to bed. 

Photos by Byron Sorrells

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