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PopMatters @ SXSW 2008

PopMatters wraps up its 2008 SXSW coverage with three pieces: Justin Follin’s literary Austin/SXSW road journal, “Gutterpunks Gone Gonzo”, Kevin Pearson’s A to Z of the fest, and Jennifer Kelly’s tips for enjoying SXSW.

Edited by Megan Milks / Produced by Sarah Zupko

For ten days each year, Austin goes bananas, and people from across the globe bounce in to go bananas with it. Things start civilized with the SXSW Film Festival and the less-familiar SXSW Interactive Festival—those are the people who got all the hotel rooms. Meanwhile, the venues lining Sixth Street wait with bated breath, steeling themselves for the five days when their guts get bloated to bursting, filled by the usual Austinites, the out-of-town friends in town to sleep on their couches, the entire music industry, and, of course, beer.

It’s halfway through the film fest’s formidable line-up of national and regional premieres when the music kicks in, kicks up, and kicks everyone in the kertunkus. Good thing it sticks to a healthy five days; we don’t think we could survive much longer, busting booty as we do to bring you near-daily coverage of the 10, 20, 50 bands we see daily and nightly, racing from pre-party to BBQ to packed showcase (times six) to after-party to after-after-party to bed/couch to computer (repeat) just so we can share the scoop on the new, the old, the same-old, and the stunning.

And so let me and my fair intro step aside to give you that self-same scoop, straight from the penetrating eyes of our intrepid reporters to this very laptop (or desktop, as the case may be). Welcome to PopMatters’ SXSW coverage galore. We’ve got our usual slew of incisive film criticism and music-reviewing mayhem, not to mention a photo essay and video blog on the way. Sit back, enjoy the ride, and remember: safe kids buckle up.

Megan Milks

Wednesday, March 19 2008

Gutterpunks Gone Gonzo

What was Justin Follin doing in between seeing all those movies and cranking out all that copy? It seems he was out way past his bedtime (!!), cavorting offsite at bonfires with crazy New Orleans gypsy band the Music Box -- and somehow still getting his copy in before deadline.

Tales from the Fest: An Abecedarium

Fresh outta Austin, Kevin Pearson alphabetizes his impressions of the music fest, all the way from A to Zzzzz (or lack thereof).

In Extremity and Loving It

Fifty-eight bands and two aching ear canals later, Jennifer Kelly offers up some guiding lights for next year.

Monday, March 17 2008

Music Days 3 & 4: “Too Much Fun”

With 40+ bands to catch, plenty of beer to be drunk, and only four Bathroom Breaks between the two of them, we wonder about the state of our writers’ bladders. Either they’re shockingly resilient or there was a gold pile of good music this weekend. Our sources say yes.

Film Days 5-7: Amazing Truths and Beautiful Losers

Explorations into the complex lives and motivations of a Filipina transsexual and Lower East Side graffiti artists, among others, trump the perplexing polyamory of Scorsese, the Stones, and IMAX. Meanwhile, torture-porn loses whatever remaining edge it had.

Sunday, March 16 2008

Music Days 1 & 2: Rabid Blues-Punk, Americana, and a Whole Lot of Crooning

PopMattters gladly shoves its neck under the Guilloteens before getting buried alive under a huge bed sheet at Mae Shi and walloped by just a few legendary Americana artists: but it's the good kind of violence, we swear.

PHOTOS: SXSW Music Days 2-4

Pics of Simian Mobile Disco, Le Loup, Clipse, No Age, Woods and many more.

Thursday, March 13 2008

Film - Days 3 and 4: Marijuana, Joy Division and Ear Candy Galore

Rock operas sink, while PopMatters swims -- in documentaries, that is. From the new Joy Division doc to a spoof of Super Size Me to a journey into the high-stakes gantlet of high school student government elections, we've got coverage of the latest docs from the SXSW Film Festival right here behind the click.

PHOTOS: SXSW Music Day 1

Pics from the event at Emo's including The Wedding Present, Why?, The Mae Shi and YACHT.

Wednesday, March 12 2008

Conquest of Paradise: Spain at SXSW 2008

With an ever growing sense of belonging to a certain international musical indie community and with better weapons than ever, Spanish acts of astonishing quality abound in this year’s SXSW.

Tuesday, March 11 2008

Film: Days 1 and 2

During Days 1 and 2 of the SXSW film festival, PopMatters dives head-first into the darkest depths of the human psyche, only to emerge cold and bleary-eyed several hours later, and with a few great movies to show for it.

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