As the years have gone by, SXSW has become more and more of an international platform for overseas artists to launch and get exposure in North America. This aspect grows every year, and is especially apparent at the SXSW Music Festival. For this week’s Austin Chronicle, a load of international musicians get the preview treatment, and it’s worth taking note because over the years SXSW has been the first major stateside appearance for artists like Amy Winehouse, Franz Ferdinand, and many more. There are many international previews to check out in this new issue, but here’s a sample from Belinda Acosta’s look at this year’s presence from Mexico and Spain :
Those people speaking Spanish behind your back are talking about you, aren’t they? Get over yourself! If you’re really wanting, longing, hurting to know what those Spanish-speaking rockeras, headbangers, and crooners are singing about, you’ll be happy to know that many of the acts coming to South by Southwest 08 from south of the border and Europe are singing in English as well as Spanish. And they’re still not talking about you – unless, of course, you’ve ever fallen in love, been jilted/angry/hurt/bruised, and lived to tell.
Remember the first time you made love to the one you love? Loved, then lost? Fell into bed with a friend, an ex-lover, or someone plain wrong, wrong, wrong? Lost a friend? Made friends with a former lover? Wrote someone a love song? Told someone to go to hell? Begged someone to come back? Thanked someone for being there? Lived with your head in the clouds?
Music is like math. It’s multilingual. This year’s lineup is heavy on rockeras, but of various stripes, from die-hard headbangers to pensive, emo-crooners that you can groove to without spilling your drink. The Spanish bands, particularly those from Barcelona, are the most enticing, but some reliable rockeras from Mexico are well worth stepping out for, too.