Fewer stages, weaker lineup, bad weather and now headliners JAMC pushed to Wednesday. Starting to sound more like the moment after the Rosebud moment for this festival.
By Jim Schutze
By Rachel Watts
By Lauren Drewes Daniels
By Anna Merlan
By Lee Escobedo
By Alice Laussade
By Scott Reitz
The Labb, 11:30 p.m.
San Fernando Valley sisters Jessica and Jennifer Clavin formed California beach-punk band Bleached after their previous group, Mika Miko, dissolved in 2009. Bleached combine sun-soaked, carefree rock with a tinge of late-'70s punk nostalgia by cranking out upbeat pop hooks and an in-your-face attitude, which can be found on their recent 7-inches.
Rubber Gloves Rehearsal Studios, 11:30 p.m.
Going on just before chant-gazers Om, True Widow will be on the front end of perhaps the sonically slowest, yet most righteous back-to-back performance of the weekend. The Dallas stone-gaze gurus have long since proven they know how to entrance North Texas fans. If one can be simultaneously lulled and bludgeoned, Dan Wilson and crew certainly know how to apply the hypnotics for such a combo.
Rubber Gloves Rehearsal Studios, 12:30 a.m.
Stoner metal, just like 3 a.m. Whataburger, is really best when one doesn't have to be altered by herb in order to fully enjoy the groove being offered. Since splitting from marathon metal sludgers Sleep, Al Cisneros and Chris Hakius have successfully continued the tribal, rhythmic stomp as a bass-and-drum duo since 2003. A new album should be out on Drag City soon. Join the chanting as they close down Rubber Gloves.
Main Stage 1, 8 p.m.
Mountain Goats' "The Best Ever Metal Band in Denton" was paid tribute (or desecrated, depending who you ask) last month as part of 35 Denton's cover series, and whether you liked Jessie Frye's cover or not, John Darnielle remains one of this decade's best songwriters. An avid metal fan, Darnielle takes it down several notches with his trio, assuming the folk-singer role and becoming the world's best people-watcher and story-teller. Last year's All Eternals Deck continued the trend. Get there early for Whiskey Folk Ramblers.
Andy's, 10:30 p.m.
Denton's Peopleodian make the music you want your computer to make, but with guitars. The four-piece's 2011 debut LP, It Woke the Moon!, was a wonderfully odd jaunt into a black hole of analog beats, chiming guitar and singer Ally Hoffmann's vaporized melodies. Somewhere between total chaos and pop songs, Peopleodian have found a happy medium.
Hailey's, 11:30 p.m.
Tired of the Lana Del Ray back-and-forth of style over substance? Shift that controversy right over to Class Actress' Elizabeth Harper. Rapprocher, the trio's 2011 release on Carpark Records, is a flirty piece of fluff with enough edge to retain your cool and provide that pop fix.
Banter, 12:30 a.m.
No, Julianna Barwick's 2011 Asthmatic Kitty debut, The Magic Place, was not the soundtrack to Tree of Life, but it is a mirror image. Long, trancelike stretches of looped vocals and angelic harmonies are the Brooklyn singer's signature, and while they often toe the line of what some may call New Age, her Southern upbringing in a church pew gives the music more of a Gothic weight.
Main Stage 2, 5 p.m.
Atlas Sound is the solo project of Bradford Cox, the Atlanta-based musician and lead singer of self-described "ambient-punk" act Deerhunter. Although blogger lore regularly notes Cox started recording under the Atlas Sound moniker on a cassette deck as a child, his first official full-length wasn't released until 2008. With Atlas Sound's third LP effort Parallax released on 4AD last year, Cox distills his stream-of-consciousness into the act's finest, most cohesive album to date.
Main Stage 2, 7 p.m.
You've got to hand it to Bethany Cosentino: She knows the basics of a good pop song. L.A. trio Best Coast's 2010 album, Crazy For You, resonated with a new generation of '60s pop fans, though their aesthetic was a bit more '90s. Hey, songs about boyfriends never really go out of style, right?
Denton Square Donuts, 12:30 a.m.
They're only teenagers, but Schmillion have come a long way. The group formed in the Girls Rock Camp Austin back in 2009, and went on to record an EP, play a SXSW showcase with the Bangles and open for Arcade Fire, all in the span of two years. A few lineup changes later, they've just put the finishing touches on a debut LP. There's honestly no better venue to see them in.
Rubber Gloves Rehearsal Studios, 12:30 a.m.
Home recording curiosity R. Stevie Moore has shrugged off labels — both genre-wise and actual label-wise — in favor of doing things the way he wants. Since 1976's Phonography, he's made the kind of bizarre, sweet stare-at-the-bedroom-ceiling pop everyone with a four-track and some cracked software is trying today, though feeling way less authentic than Moore. He finally got a backing band together, Tropical Ooze, and toured for the first time ever last year. See what has become of him.
Main Stage 1, 6 p.m.
Dum Dum Girls' Ronettes-meet-Ramones take on fuzz-pop started out as the home recording project of Kristin "Dee Dee" Gundred. After assembling a live band, it didn't take long for their visual aesthetic and stoic leather-and-lace performances to attract the eyes and ears of Sub Pop, who scooped up the four-piece and released their latest full-length, Only In Dreams, produced by Richard Gottehrer, (Blondie, The Go-Go's) and the Raveonettes' Sune Rose Wagner.