Here's a list of LA bands/songwriters to chase down at SXSW in Austin next week. This is a tipsheet for those of you with $$$ in your eyes. Looking for a band to break, license, co-opt, manipulate, convince to sell out? Here are some tips.
Gender: Four men
Their MySpace descriptive: “Tropical/Pop-Punk/Regional Mexican”
How might they make money for your label/agency/blog/film project/TV show/bake sale? One of LA's most promising young guitar bands, Abe Vigoda (alas, no relation) comes out of the thriving downtown Smell scene, which spat out fellow spazzes Mika Miko, No Age, Health, Sissy Spacek (one more celeb-band-name and we've got a trend!) and the Mae Shi. Abe Vigoda are smart, young, tightly wound guitar band that understands melody and dynamics, and scream in perfect harmony. They're also wonderfully comfortable and chatty in front of the mic.
Abe Vigoda featuring Mama Chancla (a Silver Dagger/Mika Miko)
Gender: Two men
Their MySpace descriptive: “Regional Mexican/Glam/Punk”
How might they make money for your l/a/b/fp/TVs/bs? Acid Girls make kick-ass funky party music as part of the thriving IHEARTCOMIX scene, mix Bonde Do Role with the Fugees with Simian with the Acid Girls' remix of Health's amazing “Triceratops.” It's electro, it's kinda cheesy, but it gets 'em dancing.
Gender: Five men
Their MySpace descriptive: “Reggae/Soul”
How might they make money for your l/a/b/fp/TVs/bs? Five no bullshit men make soulful, swinging rocksteady and eighteenth-wave (right?) ska. They're signed to Hellcat, so sniff elsewhere, A&Rers. But the perfect fivesome for the bar band scene in your movie.
Aggrolites live, with effects.
Gender: One man.
His MySpace descriptive: “Hip Hop/Soul/R&B”
How might they make money for your l/a/b/fp/TVs/bs? Aloe Blacc's part of the estimable Stone's Throw crew, and has been called “the indie-R. Kelly.” His smooth, velvety croon is seductive and sensual, and, being of Panamanian descent, can flip the switch and make 'em melt in Spanish, too.
Aloe Blacc unplugged
Gender: Four men
Their MySpace descriptive: “Experimental/Electro/Hardcore.”
How might they make money for your l/a/b/fp/TVs/bs? A feast of jerky digital no wave and funny disco riddims, Anavan would be perfect for your nerd chic photo spread. They're part of the ragtag post-punk Smell scene, so there's a lot of (deserved) cred.
Anavan enjoys some reaction shots.
Gender: Five men
Their MySpace descriptive: “Down-tempo/Psychedelic/Progressive”
How might they make money for your l/a/b/fp/TVs/bs? Thick distorted metal that draws from that muddy dark forest where Ozzy roams through pines in leotards, Lars thumps on his Tama drums and Buzz bounces his 'fro whilst scraping on his downtuned Les Paul. You'll perk the ears of the metal kids, fer sure.
Bodies of Water
Gender: Three men, one chick, and a few extant men and women.
Their MySpace descriptive: “Showtunes/Showtunes/Showtunes”
How might they make money for your l/a/b/fp/TVs/bs? One of this year's potential break-out bands, Bodies of Water rides into Austin on the tails of last year's much praised Ears Will Pop & Eyes Will Blink album, which prompted the great Secretly Canadian label to sign them. Rejoice with a band who sings boisterously and with great spirit like that one anthemic Montreal band. Proof of their buzz: Bodies of Water is playing SXSW parties thrown by great NYC record store Other Music, the taste-making Gorilla vs. Bear blog, Secretly Canadian's showcase and, yes, even the Urban Outfitters throwdown.
Bodies of Water: LA breakout?
Gender: One woman
Her MySpace descriptive: “Indie/Folk”
How might she make money for your l/a/b/fp/TVs/bs? Ahn has a perfectly Grey's Anatomically correct and presentation: soft and lilting, heartfelt, her “Dream” would make a perfect track to couple with teary break-up scene. And “The Boob Song” below, well, it's clever.
Priscilla Ahn, part of the Hotel Cafe posse.
The Airborne Toxic Event
Gender: Four men, one woman
Their MySpace descriptive: Ghettotech
How might they make money for your l/a/b/fp/TVs/bs? They're being cheeky with the “ghettotech” thing. In fact, the punk band's recent standing-room-only residency at Spaceland was the buzz of the rock industry, and their sound draws from early Elvis Costello and the Jam. Their “Does This Mean You're Moving On” would be perfect for an iPod commercial.
The Airborne Toxic Event, named after a DeLillo reference.