News SXSW: Tigers That Talked Tour Diary (Part Three)

Good evening friends,

Hope you’ve been keeping well? First off, we need to apologise for not getting in touch sooner - it’s been pretty difficult to get at the internet when your host family doesn’t really have it and you’re rushing around the city all day. As a result, this is quite a long post, as it was originally designed to be two separate diary entries. So, you have been warned. Hope you enjoy our extended ramblings…

Second off, we need to say a heartfelt thank you to everyone who voted for us after the Topspin Grant debate. In the end, after 1,300 votes had been cast, it turned out we lost by 6. Up against a guy who has played Synth for NIN for the last 5 years. 6 votes behind. We were told after the result that Trent Reznor himself had picked it up and been campaigning on SONOIO’s behalf – apparently it even showed up on the NIN official forum! So, that’s one hell of an effort for a debut album DIY band from Leeds, and it’s all down to you. Thank you guys.

“That’s all very good, but what about the prize?” we hear you cry… Well, it turns out that Alessandro from SONOIO was so impressed by how close the race had been, he offered to split the prize with us 50:50! That’s right, $2,500 each! Since meeting him on Thursday we knew he was a genuinely nice guy, but this absolutely astounded us. The whole story is far too fairytale-esque for us to do justice to in this blog, so if you want, you can check out the full tale on the Topspin site here.

Whilst you’re at it, you should also check out the SONOIO album here, where you can get the first four tracks of the record completely free. Even if the above hadn’t happened this week, we’d still be telling you to check him out, his record is incredible…

So, exhausted from the tension (those Topspin guys really knew how to milk our frayed nerves) and giddy at the thought of the $2,500 that was currently flying across the Atlantic into our bank accounts, we hit downtown. We’d planned to take it easy on Friday as we had another gig Saturday morning, but after this, that was never going to happen…

We flew into every bar we could, rushing around town trying to see as much music as possible – Noah & The Whale, Black Lips, Gayngs, Sage Francis, Bombay Bicycle Club, Little Dragon, Little Comets, Gallops - the list went on, the beer flowed and the spirits were high. We even managed to get into the massively oversubscribed Hype Machine private party (not before Owain got told to “Back Up, Sir” by a very, very burly Austin City Policeman outside the venue – yes, they actually say that, and when they do, it’s very, very effective…) and caught some of Jamie Woon’s set before we had to rush off to catch our lift home. A hell of a day that was…

So, Saturday morning gig time came around, and all we were praying for was that our hire gear would be less problematic than on Wednesday. Thankfully, everything arrived on time (and it was actually what we ordered this time – fancy that…), and, for a fleeting moment, it looked like we were going to have one of those elusive gigs that flowed smoothly, like the finest of clockwork.

Oh, will we ever learn…

5 minutes into line-check and the subs on stage exploded. Cue a 45 minute delay whilst our sound guy Craig and the in house engineer furiously scrabbled together a temporary fix. It did, however, give us time to go and check out the volleyball sand pit at the back of the venue, which in turn gave us the opportunity to confirm something we’d all learnt in school – we’re not really cut out to do sports…

After we finally got on with the gig, which was another great, welcoming show (we love Austin audiences), we headed to the South side of the river to do some predictable Cowboy boot and hat shopping, then on to the East side, as some local Austin friends had told us there were some great bars over there. We ended up in Cheer Up Charlie’s for a few before heading back to the river for the biggest gig we’d attempted to get into this week; Bright Eyes.

Surprisingly, we didn’t even have to queue (smug artist wristbands, don’t you know…), and the gig itself was incredible – they were great, the venue was a beautiful outdoor stage right on the lake, and the set closed with an impressively co-ordinated fireworks display. Sweet. We then followed the advice of almost everyone we’d asked about late night food and ended up in Magnolia’s, a 24hr diner on the way back to the house, where we all ordered the best Blueberry and Banana Pancakes in the world. Fact. Well, you know a place is good when there’s a half hour wait for a table at 3am…

That just left Sunday, and our last day in Texas, and we’d agreed that today, we’d actually go through on the promise of ‘taking it easy for a bit’. So, after a leisurely morning of basketball in the front yard (again, not cut out to be sportsmen one little bit…) we headed to the beautiful Barton Springs to soak up the nature of the area. They’ve converted a natural springs ten minutes outside of the city into an outdoor pool, and it’s COLD, which is perfect in the Texan heat.

We’re heading to the BBQ pit tonight for a massive farewell meal before the long trip home tomorrow. We’ll write you the next (and last) of these once we’re back on the shores of the UK, late on Tuesday…

Until then…

Much Love, Tigers xx

Top tip for the Day: There is nothing “short” about a short stack of pancakes. It’s easier to eat an entire Sunday Dinner in one sitting. In this situation, Maple Syrup is your friend. Until the diabetic sweats kick in…

Owain, Bob Topspin and Alessandro SONOIO waiting for the results.

6 Votes in it!

Repping the ‘704 y’all

These boots were made for buyin’

Bright Eyes Show. Populated by Bad Lookalikes

Drunken Midnight Pancakes, drinking Maple Syrup like it’s gravy

Your subscription could not be saved. Please try again.
Your subscription has been successful.

Love Festivals?

Subscribe here to receive regular updates from DIY on all things festivals.

Latest Issue

February 2024

Featuring The Last Dinner Party, IDLES, Yard Act, Crawlers, Remi Wolf and more.

Read Now Buy Now Subscribe to DIY