Austin … according to Mike!
Knowing the late night nature of Austin, I persuaded Kim to take a nap after we got there Thursday. The result was she was rarin’ to go when she woke up. So we took a cab to Austin’s famed 6th St./4th Warehouse District around 8 p.m. We walked and walked, exploring bar after bar, restaurant after restaurant before settling on Louie’s 106 where I had some awesome trout and Kim ate half an expensive steak. A really expensive steak… That she had half of.
Then, even though it was 10 p.m. (yes, we’re parents who typically rise at 5:30 a.m.), I convinced my lovely, understanding and stuffed wife to try and walk some 6 blocks to Zona Rosa, where Spoon (one of my favorite bands) were supposed to be playing a sold-out show. I had passed two weeks earlier on eBay tickets for this club gig. ($75 a piece for $25 face price tix). I figured we might get lucky and be able to hear the distant sound outside the club for free. I tried talking up the somewhat hairy, intimidating gate guys to let us in. No luck. Kim found a guy hawking $20 tickets. I bit. We got in. And awesomeness happened. We got to watch a great show, stumbling upon a view from the side of stage where we were close to the band.
Among the folks hanging out/buying beer/peeing alongside me, were the members of Grizzly Bear, something that is only gonna resonate with the other music geeks who read the same music blogs I do.
Anyway, Spoon played all my favorites, a balls-out great show with front man Britt Daniel closing with an intimate, solo version of “Me and the Bean” from the lauded Girls Can Tell record. Heavenly. Read more about it here.
Friday at the fest was good. It took a long time to get in. Kim and I got sweaty. We got tired. And finally, we got in. We perused Peter, Bjorn & John doing the “Young Folks,” sans Kanye. Then we went to see one of Kim’s faves, Joss Stone, who was very OK. Then we saw LCD Soundsystem. Frontman James Murphy made some great jokes about playing the AT&T stage. “When I was listening to punk records in 1983, I thought… one day…. I’m going to bring the rock to…a stage sponsored by multinational telecommunications corporation.” Ha. Then we saw Spoon again, which was OK.
And the Killers, who took the stage with some over the top messianic theme music and video suggesting they are pilgrims wandering the Mojave in search of … SAM’S TOWN, gambling Mecca of South Boulder Highway.