For anyone attending the annual South By Southwest Festival (SXSW) in Austin, Texas the week of March 12, the decisions are painstaking. Who do you miss so you can see someone else? A Green Day fan who also loves the Flaming Lips and Depeche Mode will know this catch-22 all too well come this Friday.
But before then, for your convenience, here are the big names playing this Wednesday. Mark your calendars and go out there and help keep Austin weird!
1) Nick Cave & The Bad Seeds/Yeah Yeah Yeahs, 7:45pm, Stubb's - Will Karen O be this year's PJ Harvey and toy with Nick Cave for a duet, or will Cave insist on bringing his best album in years, the brooding Push The Sky Away, to the cognoscenti in its purest, most unadulterated form? Either way, Yeah Yeah Yeahs will surely burn down the house--figuratively, of course--with previews from their upcoming April release Mosquito. And Cave will be Nick Cave, the creepiest and coolest guy in the business.
2) Iron & Wine, 11pm, Austin City Limits at Moody Theater - It's not a music festival unless you spend some time watching a sensitive dude in a beard break your heart. Sam Beam's new album, also coming in April and titled Ghost On Ghost, is slated for the artsy Nonesuch label, so expect him to go high-class.
3) Iggy & The Stooges, 8:30pm, House Of Vans - No one should ever miss a performance by one of the greatest live performers of all time.
4) Paramore, 12:10am, The Belmont - In a music scene overrun by dudes, it's time to see what Hayley Williams has planned for her next chapter of the band without founding members Josh and Zac Farro. Comeback? (No, she isn't asking the former members to come back. I mean she's planning a career comeback!)
5) North Mississippi Allstars, 12:30am, The Parish - This group of industry vets--they backed John Hiatt and Luther Dickinson spends time in the Black Crowes--toured with Robert Plant in 2011 and are the type of aggressive blues and rock band that is always better in concert.
6) Kendrick Lamar, 9pm, 1100 Warehouse - All we need to say here is "Dr. Dre protégé" and it should be evident why you should find your way to one of this man's three showcase gigs. Friday, 1:15am at Austin Music Hall is an alternate date, but it's always best to either catch the first gig--or the final one, which happens to be on Saturday at 12:30am at Viceland.