Foreign Born started in San Francisco in 2003 after singer Matt Popieluch and guitarist Lewis Pesacov graduated San Francisco State University. After playing a few shows, the pair went down to LA to clean up their rough demos. The results were promising enough for Lewis and Matt to quit their menial jobs and move down to LA where the current line-up of Foreign Born was, yes, born.
Their first LP, On The Wing Now, was released in 2007 and their latest effort, Person to Person, is due out in June. I’m in love with the first single from the album, “Vacationing People.” Judging by the number of recognizable faces in the audience at this show, I’m not the only one. Chris from The Morning Benders was as equally excited as I was to be there. And Grizzly Bear guitarist Ed Droste called Foreign Born his “favorite new band” recently.
My rock-n-roll vacation is just days, hours away. I’ve been combing the line up of 1400 bands for weeks now. My list is made, I’m checking it twice and trying to keep the panic at bay as I struggle to find a way to fit it all in.
SXSW is the equivalent of Mecca for the indie music junkie, like me. It’s the place you go to discover the best new artists everyone else will be listening 6 months or a year from now, depending on where you fall on the music curve. And already I’ve found some gems. Here’s a sample of a few bands I’m particularly excited to see. Believe me, there are many, many more. Some of them are classics reunited – like Echo and The Bunneymen and Red Red Meat – others somewhat establish, but most are new to the scene and trying to break out. Enjoy!
Johannesburg-based BLK JKS played a rawkin’ show last night at the Rickshaw Stop in San Francisco. And from the looks of the lightly attended crowd, you guys didn’t know what you were missing. Their music is a wild concoction of transcendental African rhythms, Zulu soul and scorching rock and roll. And they like to jam. They are all completely self taught musicians and it was fascinating to watch them perform. I was struck by way they handled and played their instruments. It was definitely different. There was an air of reverence that translated into this feeling of the instruments playing them versus they playing the instruments. That or they worked some really good voodoo magic on me last night.
The band’s Mystery EP is out today on Secretly Canadian. If you’re heading to SXSW, you can check them out for yourself at one of the following shows:
Wednesday, March 18 11:00am
ME Television Studios (KEXP event)
Wednesday, March 18 10:00pm
Paradise Café (401 E. 6th St)
Thursday, March 19 2:00pm
The Parish (NPR event) (214 E. 6th St)
Thursday, March 19 10:30pm
Mohawk Patio (912 Red River St)