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Austin music 2013 - Ramon Ramirez’s highlights

Staff Writer
Austin 360

By Ramon Ramirez

Editor’s note: This article was originally published December 29, 2013

The Impossibles, Hotel Vegas. The reclusive Trapper Keeper ’90s skater punk heroes reunited for Fun Fun Fun Fest, performing off campus late Sunday. Power chords, Lone Star singalongs — this was a gorgeous mess of muscular riffs.

A Giant Dog, the Mohawk. The band’s “Bone” record was my favorite Austin release of the year. Romantic, sexy, fast fuzz rock for leather jackets. Try “Virgin Girl,” and tell me its circa-’70s sax stabs don’t make you want to pour up a shot of Old Crow and take home your upstairs neighbor.

Yeezus, AT&T Center. The most compelling, brilliant and noisy national tour edges Macca’s Erwin vibes because of its pompous grandeur. Jesus Christ offered salvation; Kanye West let his most difficult songs breathe on stage; a glacier parted in half.

The Eastern Sea, South By Southwest. The music conference was stacked as always with prestige. Kendrick Lamar performed a one-song set, “Backsest Freestyle,” and the Fader Fort erupted. I kept running into these home-brewing locals and their sincere, post- Arcade Fire baroque pop.

Black Flag, Infest. Greg Ginn and the punk grandaddys played their first show on American soil since 1986 in Austin. It was basically karaoke, as rowdy friends turned out the pit and an Infest employee was thrown out for stage-diving.