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I generally don’t like the idea of music festivals. Too much to see, too many people, over-priced beer, stages that are too big for indie bands, etc. But I do like The L Magazine’s Northside Festival. Here are my reasons:

1. It’s cheap. Badges, although not guaranteed entry, are only $50, and last for four-days.

2. Sponsoring is minimal. Yeah, Heineken was everywhere. But that was basically it. In the press goody bag I got a healthy aloe drink, pirate booty and a novel. That’s the most inoffensive sponsoring ever.

3. It’s in BROOKLYN!

4. Stages are curated and presented by local blogs and websites. In SXSW fashion, you get to go to your favorite blogs or media peoples’ shows. But it’s on a smaller and more unique scale.

This year marked the 2nd year of Northside, and the bands were great.

HIGHLIGHTS

Titus Andronicus. Especially when Patrick Stickles told audience members to “not be animals and throw trash everywhere.”

Coasting. This dynamic duo from Brooklyn play fast and ferocious punk rock ala 2010, with tons of reverb. The band played the Brooklyn Based showcase, which MME curated! (Pat on the back.)

Cloud Nothings. The power-pop of alterna-rock Cleveland outfit Cloud Nothings is so infectious you’ll find yourself jumping up and down. The band played its first show opening for Real Estate back in early December, and are on tour with Wavves. That’s not for no reason….

Andrew Cedermark. Does being in a 120 degree room with humidity and feeling like a breath of fresh air is being blown over your soul and into your ears sound possible? It is.

Dana Jewell. Love songs at their most tender.

The Northside Festival opening night was a hipster frat party in which every dude (and a few dudettes) tried to out-bro the next guy. Instead of shotgunning Budweisers, though, these fresh young things chugged PBRs, moshed, and crowd-surfed.

It was a Wavves show! What did we expect?

Continue reading and look at pics at Sound of the City on VillageVoice.com…

Yeah, I know, these memories are a little out of order. But that’s how memories are remembered, yes? Without further blah blah’s, here’s Cloud Nothings, a band I really love for their utter infectiousness. Shot by the awesome Samantha Cornwell.

Also, you may not know this song…

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more about “Cloud Nothings- Live- Micro Pixel Rit…“, posted with vodpod

I wanted to throw up these pictures real quick so you could all see, in part, how fucking awesome the show was yesterday. Located a little bit outside of the downtown Austin shit show, MICRO-PIXEL-RITES was a chill space with positive vibes, grass, beer, amazing hand-made seitan bbq sandwiches and hand cut fries. But you want to hear about the bands!

They were all shiny. Each band played like they were into you as much as you were into them. Must have been, again, the vibezzzz. From Big Troubles’ reverbed roar to the super energized performance of the highly buzzed Cloud Nothings, from the psychedelic haze of Rangers’ second performance ever to Family Portrait’s ability to make you feel in the future and the past at the same time, to Twin Sister, oh my god Twin Sister, save your heart now, to the always true Alex Bleeker and the Freaks to the female riot power of Coasting, to Pill Wonder, what a wonder with 2 drum kits and finally, Campfires, Jeff Walls’ Chicago bedroom project that is now a loud onslaught of pop. WOAH.

Family Portrait

Rangers

Twin Sister

Alex Bleeker and the Freaks

Big Troubles

TONIGHT

Akron/Family, Warpaint, Please the Trees at Music Hall of Williamsburg, 8ish

THURSDAY

Man Man, Born Ruffians, Javelin at NYU Kimmel Center, 8ish

Sunburned Hand of the Man, Nancy Garcia, Grasshopper, Zebu, Sord at Death by Audio, 8ish

Gunfight, Shark?, Quiet Loudly, Scary Living at Glasslands, 8ish

Animal Collective (performing Transverse Temporal Gyrus), Danny Perez (artist) at the Guggenheim, 4:30 and 9

FRIDAY

Tanlines, Lemonade, Janka Nabay, Pictureplane, Blondes at Monster Island Basement, 8ish

SATURDAY

MICRO-PIXEL-RITES Pump-Up Pre-SXSW Show: Details TBA at 402 Jefferson, Bushwick

Golden Triangle, Sandwitches, Coasting, Girls at Dawn at Monster Island Basement, 8ish

Titus Andronicus, Parts and Labor, The Babies, Cloud Nothings at Bowery Ballroom, 8ish

Amniotic, Twin Sister, Jersey Band at Coco66, 6:30 ish??

Nude Beach, Total Slacker, Girls At Dawn and more at Don Pedros, 9ish

Evan Dando at Mercury Lounge, 10ish

Free Kisses, Shark?, Byrds of Paradise, Philip Seymour Hoffman at Shea Stadium, 8ish

SUNDAY

Washed Out, Small Black, Pictureplane, Oneohtrix Point Never at Mercury Lounge, 8ish (Monday too)

Awesome Color, Tyvek, Talk Normal at Market Hotel, 8ish

MONDAY

Oneohtrix Point Never, Metacomet, Sweetheart, Luke Perry at Bruar Falls, 8ish

Pictureplane, Oberhofer, The Shams at Glasslands, 9:30ish

Together with the ladies of Pixelhorse and Visitation Rites, we are Sisters Doin’ It For Themselves this year at SXSW! This is female powered– and sure to be an overwhelmingly awesome and DIY backyard showcase.

The party goes down at 1204 Salina Street in Austin on Thursday, March 18 from 1-8 pm. Check out the flyer, post it, pass it, love that cat on records!

And stay tuned for a BIG announcement… pre-SXSW-pump up party wump wump featuring awesome bands. IN BROOKLYN.

Cloud Nothings came out of nowhere and are the biggest thing right now. To have two premieres in one day on two of the biggest music sites on the internet (Gorilla vs. Bear and The Fader)… that can only mean one thing. OK, it could mean two things.

a) You’re a buzz band.

b) You’re good!

In this case, both are true. I saw Cloud Nothings first show. They opened for Real Estate and Woods at the Market Hotel. It was fun, energetic, and they played loud and ferociously. (Big Up’s to Todd P. He heard the band and booked them on that show.) I saw them play again less than a month later, opening for Alex Bleeker and the Freaks and others. Also a great show.

The band is playing SXSW and MtyMx. I’ll be seeing a lot of them and will report back.

Here’s one new song, off a Group Tightener release. (BTW, Group Tightener is the label run in part by Sam Hockley-Smith, an editor at The Fader. Conflict of interest?) CLARIFICATION: See Hockley-Smith’s comment. There will be no conflict.

Cloud Nothings: Morgan

Two bands from two midwestern cities, both fuzzy and fun. One is a one-man bedroom band that has never played a show but has loyal followers, the other is a full-band that played its first show in November and has since taken the Internet by storm and booked lots of shows.

Campfires and Cloud Nothings are the future. Make good music. Put it on the Internets. Build buzz and respond to fans and bloggers. Give songs away. THEN start playing shows. Both bands will be at SXSW, and Cloud Nothings will be at MtyMx. (Campfires was maybe going to be there too, fell through).

While there are many one-hit wonder Internet acts, both of these bands, especially Campfires, have put out release after release of hearty songs. The Cloud Nothings debut on Bridgetown sold out in like, five minutes. It’s being re-issued. Campfires has a release on Mexican Summer and Leftist Nautical Antiques. This split cassette, on Bathetic Records, is sure to be a golden ticket as well.

Stream Campfires’ “Magic Carpet” below.

Cloud Nothings buzzed the room with their mid-west 90s pop and Alex Bleeker and the Freaks then mellowed us all out. While Cloud Nothings inspired dancing and smiling, The Freaks inspired introspection and mind jams. The show experience would have been perfect if it weren’t for the sweaty drunk whom my friends deemed “the human sponge.” If he brushed up against you, you were drenched. Thanks for the Evan Williams, dude.

I would like if the Freaks went even further with their jams. I mean, let’s face it, extended solos and freak outs are awesome, but it’s gotta be shaken up a bit.

The Cloud Nothings line up was different than the last time I saw them, at the Market Hotel in early December. Anyone know what happened to the guy with the blue frames?

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TONIGHT

Sam Amidon at Mercury Lounge, 9ish (also Monday w/ Beth Orton at Bell House)

WEDNESDAY

Trouble and Bass, Uproot Andy, Ninjasonik at Studio at Webster Hall, 10ish

THURSDAY

Teengirl Fantasy, Stellar Om Source, Lemonade (DJs) at Pianos, 11ish

Big Troubles, Blissed Out, Procedure Club, Dream Diary at Silent Barn, 8ish

FRIDAY

Real Estate, Beach Fossils, The Beets, Total Slacker at St. James Church, LES, 8ish

Gordan Gano (Violent Femmes) and others at the Bell House, 11:45 pm

SATURDAY

Beach Fossils, Alex Bleeker and the Freaks, Cloud Nothings, Nude Beach at Monster Island Basement, 8ish

Dinosaur Jr. at Bowery Ballroom, 8ish(& Sun. at Music Hall of WBurg and Mon. at Brooklyn Bowl)

Aa, Dinowalrus at Cake Shop, 9ish

MONDAY

Ecstatic Sunshine, Jason Urick, McDonalds at Cake Shop, 8ish

Woods at Monkeytown, 2 shows, 8 and 1030

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