SXSW 2015 Report: Russ Borris

FUV's intrepid music director and host of The Alternate Side, Russ Borris, is at SXSW in Austin this week with Team FUV. On Wednesday night, he found himself running from venue to venue, trying to catch artists and bands on his must-see list, like Only Real and Chastity Belt. He also came across a few surprises too.

SXSW 2015: Public Radio Rocks Day Stage Showcase


From NYC to Austin, Team FUV is getting ready for our annual live broadcast from SXSW. The Public Radio Rocks SXSW Day Stage showcase once again brings live music discovery to the radio, and not only on FUV but on our partner stations: WXPN in Philadelphia, KUTX in Austin, KXT in Dallas and The Current in Minneapolis. So listen along with music fans all over the country – this Friday from 1 to 7pm EDT – for performances by Twin Shadow, Gang of Four, Ryan Bingham, Best Coast, Madisen Ward and the Mama Bear and Courtney Barnett.

Dan Mangan: TAS In Session

Vancouver folk musician Dan Mangan has steadily built a critically-acclaimed career, receiving four nominations earlier this month for the Juno Awads, Canada's equivalent of the Grammys.. His highly-praised third album, Oh Fortune, was released on Arts and Crafts last autumn, produced by Colin Stewart. Mangan is presently on tour in Australia, but he will head to Austin for SXSW next month. A lengthy journey through Europe is planned for April. The busy Mangan slowed down just long enough to bring his band to the Bronx for a session with The Alternate Side and after the jump, read highlights of that interview and watch performances of four songs from Oh Fortune.

Watch Friends Perform "My Boo" (Ghost Town DJ's Cover) At The Alternate Side

Brooklyn quintet Friends, which is headed to SXSW next month, won't release its still-untitled debut album until May, but the band dropped by The Alternate Side last week for a five-song set. They even treated us (our request) to their fantastic cover of Ghost Town DJ's 1996 hit, "My Boo," the B-side to their slinky 2011 single "I'm His Girl." The entire session with Friends will run next month on The Alternate Side and TAS on 91.5 WNYE,  but after the jump, enjoy an exclusive live TAS performance of "My Boo" from the group's dynamic set.

TAS In Session: Scala and Kolacny Brothers

One of the more curious hits of Coachella and SXSW was Scala and Kolacny Brothers, an all-female Belgian choir led by a pair of dynamic siblings, Steven and Stijn Kolacny.  Their haunting covers of rock hits, like Radiohead's "Creep,"  grace their new, self-titled album. Scala and Kolacny Brothers play New York's Webster Hall on April 28 and recently, Steven, Stijn and fifteen members of Scala visited WFUV and The Alternate Side's Studio A. Their conversation with Claudia Marshall will air on WFUV this Wednesday, April 27 at 9 p.m., but you can see them perform in our studio after the jump.

Thao Nguyen' s SXSW Blog

Singer and social advocate Thao Nguyen had a hectic SXSW schedule, juggling gigs with her band Thao and The Get Down Stay Down and participating in a panel on music and post-Katrina New Orleans. Intrigued by her many obligations - she's also releasing a collaborative album with Mirah Yom Tov Zeitlyn of Mirah on April 26 - The Alternate Side asked Thao if she'd blog about her Austin escapades.

Bon Iver's Justin Vernon Slates Sophomore Album

Winter might be over, but the melancholy, snowbound lyricism of Bon Iver's Justin Vernon is making a return - in June, of all times. No real clue as to whether Bon Iver's ten-track next album will reflect its sunnier release time, but as he admits in an interview with Rolling Stone regarding the nearly four year lapse since the release of 2007's For Emma, Forever Ago, "I forgot how to write songs."  

Withered Hand's SXSW Photo Blog

Scottish singer and songwriter Dan Willson, who plays as Withered Hand, learned about a week before he was to depart for SXSW that his visa application had been rejected by U.S. immigration officials. Stunned, he appealed and reached out to his label, friends and fans for help. International press, radio personalities and other musicians took up his cause. Hours before he was to depart for the States, Willson's visa was approved. Given his stressful escapades, The Alternate Side thought that Dan would have an especially poignant perspective on SXSW and we asked him to do a blog for us ... and he kindly agreed.

TAS Interview (SXSW): TV On The Radio

TV On The Radio arrived at Austin's SXSW without bassist Gerard Smith, who is in the midst of cancer treatment, but the group managed to soldier on at the festival with a few gigs at Stubb's and the Mohawk, unveiling songs from their new album, Nine Types of Light, which is due out on April 12. The Alternate Side's Alisa Ali caught up with Tunde Adebimpe, Kyp Malone and Jaleel Bunton (who took on bass duties in Smith's absence) for a brief chat. Video after the jump.

Esben and the Witch SXSW Blog: Day Four

Esben and the Witch's indefatigable trio of Daniel Copeman, Thomas Fisher and Rachel Davies has been poetically and visually documenting their SXSW experiences - the good, the bad and the ugly - for The Alternate Side. The powerful Goth-touched band, which recently released their startling debut Violet Cries on Matador Records, play their last SXSW show today, March 19, the all-star Mess With Texas party.

The Boxer Rebellion's SXSW Blog: Part One

Anglo-American anthemic rockers The Boxer Rebellion are gearing up for a North American tour this April, but first they made a return trip to SXSW, supporting their new album The Cold Still which dropped last month. Despite heavy-duty SXSW stress - the band plays their last Austin showcase tonight, March 19 - drummer Piers Hewitt found time to send on a blog for The Alternate Side.

TAS Interview (SXSW): The Cave Singers

The Cave Singers had a pretty easy SXSW schedule - just three shows - and the guys have finished their Austin run and are headed to New Orleans where they kick off a North American tour tomorrow, March 20. They were slacking off a little - and reminiscing about Friendster - when The Alternate Side's Alisa Ali caught up with Pete Quirk, Derek Fudesco and Marty Lund the other day, wandering the Austin alleyways. Video after the jump.

TAS Interview (SXSW Artist): Will Sheff of Okkervil River

Okkervil River return with their first album in three years, I Am Very Far, on May 10 and they've been rolling out new material from the record at SXSW this week (they play Antone's at 1 a.m. tonight, which we'll count as late on March 18). The Alternate Side's Russ Borris caught up with frontman Will Sheff for a quick tête-à-tête and was surprised to learn that if it weren't for SXSW, Okkervil River would have never gotten its big break. Video after the jump.

SXSW Live WFUV Broadcast Today: Josh Ritter, Emmylou Harris and More

The Alternate Side's sister station WFUV will be broadcasting its very first SXSW showcase today, March 17 at 1 p.m. EDT, with a dynamic lineup of Josh Ritter, Emmylou Harris, The Head and the Heart and The Belle Brigade, live at Austin's Convention Center. Check it out either on 90.7 WFUV in New York or streaming via

TAS Interview (SXSW Artist): James Blake

Dubstep-leaning, electro-pop crooner James Blake made his SXSW debut alongside fellow Brits Yuck and The Vaccines at Time Out's showcase at Stubb's on Wednesday night, March 16. The Alternate Side's Russ Borris caught up with Blake before the gig and found out a little about what makes this emotive artist tick. Video after the jump.

TAS Interview: The Soft Pack

The Soft Pack, who began life with the moniker the Muslims, wrap up the last of a three night stand in the New York area on Saturday night at Music Hall of Williamsburg. The Alternate Side caught up with the quartet at SXSW where they told us about tricky name changes, the perils of pizza delivery and why they miss having Warren Zevon and Alex Chilton around.

SXSW Flashback: Fyfe Dangerfield

The frontman for the Mercury Prize-nominated Guillemots recently released his very own debut album Fly Yellow Moon and took a trip to SXSW. He talked with The Alternate Side about his solo sojourn, hiding his passion for Suede while working with Bernard Butler, his unapologetic love of good commercial pop and plans for the third Guillemots album

SXSW 2010 Blog: Melissa Auf der Maur

The Alternate Side asked the very busy and talented solo artist, bassist, filmmaker and photographer Melissa Auf der Maur, former member of Hole and Smashing Pumpkins, if she'd document her SXSW 2010 experience for us ... the start of which happened to coincide with her birthday. Melissa releases her second solo album Out Of Our Minds (OOOM) on March 30.

TAS in Session: Drink Up Buttercup

Philly's carnival popsters Drink Up Buttercup not only survived nine shows at this year's SXSW, but the winsome, retro-leaning quartet finally release their debut album Born and Thrown on a Hook tomorrow, March 23. The band - Jim Harvey, Ben Money, Farzad Houshiarnejad and Mike Cammarata - recently dropped by The Alternate Side to chat with our own Alisa Ali and play "Doggy," "Gods and Gentlemen" and "Young Ladies" for us. They even brought along a mannequin head.

SXSW 2010 Blog: Steve Schiltz of Hurricane Bells

Steve Shiltz of Hurricane Bells has survived SXSW week and sent The Alternate Side his "bloggy doggy" of his adventures in Austin. Hurricane Bells' new album is Tonight is the Ghost and Steve launches a tour with Blue October in April.

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