The Extraordinaires, debating a late night or early start.
Videos by Matthew Keever
Two days had gone by since we last visited the SXSW Overflow Fest at Super Happy Fun Land, and the number of people in attendance seemed to have quadrupled. Tuesday night, the bands had much better luck than those who performed on Sunday and, for some of them, it was neither their first trip to Houston nor SHFL.
The Extraordinaires, a progressive, narrative band from Philly, played an energetic set and still had the liveliness afterward to show us their merch. The band's lead singer, Jay Purdy, a Seth Rogan-looking rock star, told us the band has booked three shows at South by; one today at noon, another tonight at 7 p.m. and a third on Thursday. When we talked to them, the band was debating whether to get a hotel in Houston and wake up early or hit the road right then and there.
As East of the Wall took the stage, the members stumbled to find their instruments - guess why. The band mentioned its new single "Googly Eyes" at least 20 times and, although we assume they had more than their fair share of free beers, they still managed to put on quite a performance. One minute, they sounded like Slipknot; the next, their musical interludes were more akin to Explosions in the Sky.
Dancing in the aisles... always a good sign.
They reminded us of System of a Down's later albums, not so much because of a similarity in sound, but more because they seem like an able, young bunch unsure of which direction to go. They have a lot of talent and use it to aggressively shred strings and beat drums. We wouldn't be surprised if the singer gets polyps sometime soon, either.
And yes, that's a compliment.
While his voice may have just been raw, which would be understandable given the band's musical style, East of the Wall should stick to screamo or tune down some of its softer songs. The poor boy was straining to hit some of the notes, and he never came too close.
What seemed like a lot of fans in the seats turned out primarily to be other performers. As each band finished its set, various members of the crowd would get up, walk outside, grab some gear and hit the stage.
Bands watching bands!