Photo: Trent Johnson
Photo: Trent Johnson

Okkervil River Comes Home for SXSW

During the entirety of Okkervil River‘s set up at SXSW‘s NPR showcase on Wednesday, March 14, I couldn’t help but think, “Is this band FROM Austin?” To be fair, I’ve never heard of them before, which may be blasphemous to some, but oh well, get over yourself.

Back to my thoughts: each looked like a stereotypical person from Austin. There was the bearded guy, a girl in a weird – but chic – dress, a guy with the curly hair shoved in a trucker hat, a guy who channels Keanu from Point Break, and so on and so on.

This band looks like Austin, with each representing a different aesthetic that I’ve witnessed in only two days in town. So when lead singer Will Sheff exclaimed, “We’re originally from Austin,” everything made sense.

Comments about appearance aside, the folk group provided a warm, but fun, jam. This band is far removed from playing at small barbecue joints, but the music provides a stellar backdrop to Lone Star Tall Boys and smoked brisket.

It was a heartwarming set, but within the emotional vignettes and heartfelt lyrics was a folksy easiness leaving you grinning as you walked to the next performance on the schedule.

For more information about Okkervil River, check out their website here.