The Untitled Interview #74 – SXSW Edition: Starring Empress Hotel

The days are getting longer, the nights are getting shorter and sweeter, and that, my little vixens, can only mean one thing: it's getting close to being almost time for the one and only SXSW. And of course, that means I had to ask some questions of the bands I'd sure want to see if I was heading down to Austin for the 25th annual SXSW-stravaganza.

Just for shits and giggles, I looked at the assemblage of influences Empress Hotel cites on their Myspace. Electric Light Orchestra, David Bowie, Prince, and The Cars are just a few, and the great this is you can hear all of that and more in the music of The Big Easy's Empress Hotel. There's something joyful and festive to their glammy pop, and it's as cool and refreshing as that sweaty bottle of beer on the sultriest of Summer days. Definitely worth checking out, both at SXSW and otherwise.

Les Enfants Terribles: How are you getting to SXSW: plane, train, or automobile?
Empress Hotel: Neither. We use a spaceship and a trailer.

LET: Inevitably, you will forget to pack:
EH: I always plan on someone else packing toothpaste, and usually only one person usually does. So we always have to share. I will most likely forget to pack a pillow or snacks.

LET: How many showcases/parties will you be playing?
EH: As of right now, just two but we plan on playing a shit-load more.

LET: Band you're most looking forward to seeing at the festival?
EH: Middle Brother, Pepper Rabbit, Generationals (with the new lineup, should be tight), Cults, Low, Menomena, Yellow Ostrich, Ty Segall, Quintron, The Black Angels.

LET: What's the first thing you plan on doing upon arrival in Austin?
EH: Eating some Mexican food or sleeping!

LET: What was the first festival you ever attended, either as a musician or member of the general public?
EH: New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival. My mom's been taking me since I was a little kid and by the age of 15 or so I started going with friends and/or by myself. It’s great. I've had the pleasure of playing the fest a few times too.

LET: Favorite thing about festivals?
EH: The food is usually pretty amazing but often a bit overpriced as we all know. Seeing big production bands (Metallica at Bonnaroo) is something that is a once in a lifetime opportunity and though it’s a little cheesy, its so worth it! SXSW is not what I would call a typical festival. It’s more like Mardi Gras on Bourbon St. in New Orleans only not lame. Crowded streets but not because there are a bunch frat boys and topless women (not that there is anything wrong with the latter). Also, music everywhere, but not club oonce oonce music like Bourbon St. It is usually pretty awesome! I can dig it.

mp3: Bells Ring (Empress Hotel from the forthcoming Empress Hotel EP)

[photo by Zack Smith]


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