SXSW 2013: Desert Noises @ Javelina – New Frontier Touring Showcase 03.15

Posted March 18, 2013 in
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What was the crowd's reaction?
It was my first time on Rainey Street in Austin when I headed to the New Frontier Touring Showcase at a bar that reminded me of The Garage on Beck called Javelina. The place was packed, and as I arrived, a folk rock band was just finishing up their set to an enthusiastic audience. When Utah natives and indie rock band Desert Noises started up with ten times the energy of the previous band, the crowd filled in even tighter and the whooping got a little louder. I have never seen these guys play live, and dammit, I've been missing out! Their music is a lot more alt-country sounding on their records, but played live, they definitely had a garage rock vibe going, with a taste of straight up rock n' roll every time guitarist Pat Boyer started to shred. There was not a moment that Desert Noises wasn't giving their all, and the sound was as flawless as if they were playing Velour. I look forward to seeing them again when they get back in town.

If you had to marry one band member, who?
I had a short conversation with Pat while they were setting up, who was the most gracious and polite lead guitarist I have ever had the pleasure of meeting. I took a spot right in front of him as the show began, which ended up being the best idea ever, 'cause I had a front-row seat to his twitchy guitar solos. As I watched his fingers run up and down the frets, his curly hair waving in front of his face, I was in love by the end of the first song.

What was the best song they played?
I'm a total sucker for sad love songs, so when "I Won't See You" started up, I was immediately swaying back and forth. The song reminds me of a twangier, groovier Band Of Horses track, and Pat had plenty of solo moments that allowed me to clasp my hands and stare at him doe-eyed.

What set the show apart from a typical set you might see in SLC?
Since I haven't had the pleasure of seeing them play in town, I don't have much of a reference point, but the bar was pretty much sardined with people from the stage on back, and they completely fit the venue's woody, country feel. That's something that doesn't always happen in Salt Lake––the band fitting in with the venue. I know these guys got their start out of Velour's music churning machine, but they seemed right at home in Austin.

Most memorable moment?
After all of Pat's solos, of course, there was a moment near the end of their set when frontman Kyle Henderson danced his way to Boyer and they played a groovy, bluesy riff-and-respond, facing each other and leaning in and out together, like they were in a game of alternating hokey-pokey. The crowd loved it, and so did I. They're currently on tour through the Southern states, but I hope they make some time to play to their home fans, I'm itching to hear them again.