The Untitled Interview #33 – SXSW Edition: Starring Matthew Byars (The Caribbean)

I’m finding it hard to believe that it’s almost time once again for the annual industry hootenanny known as SXSW. In a few short days, Austin will be taken over and all hell will break loose. To celebrate the impending week of absolute havoc, Austin-style, we’ve thrown down the interview gauntlet to see what some of our favorite bands are going to be getting up to whilst gettin down in the wilds of Texas.

It has definitely warmed the cockles of my heart to see some solid local bands heading down to Austin to represent DC this year at SXSW. The Caribbean has been around for quite a few years now, and it’s nice to know they’re getting some big time festival cred. After all, they’re just so very appealing, mellow and melodic and just sorta pretty songs. In a way, their music reminds me of DC in the spring, right before it gets too bloody hot. They should do rather well down there in Texas, I do believe. If you’re heading that way, you’ve got two chances to see ‘em. Don’t sleep.

Les Enfants Terribles: How are you getting to SXSW: plane, train, or automobile?
Matthew Byars: Plane. Then automobile.

LET: Inevitably, you will forget to pack:
MB: Yes.

LET: How many showcases/parties will you be playing?
MB: Two.

LET: Bands you're most looking forward to seeing at the festival?
MB: 1) Collections of Colonies of Bees 2) Tobacco. 3) Slaraffenland.

LET: What's the first thing you plan on doing upon arrival in Austin?
MB: Finding Adam & Sara from our label.

LET: What was the first festival you ever attended, either as a musician or member of the general public?
MB: We played SXSW in 1997 as part of a previous band; that was my first festival experience.

LET: Favorite thing about festivals?
MB: In my experience, festivals largely suck, but SXSW is special. Best city for it to be in, especially in March, and the closed-off streets make everything super accessible. It's also a rare opportunity for the entire Hometapes family to be together, and we're generally pretty close, so that's special.

mp3: Bees, Their Vision and Language (The Caribbean from Populations)


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