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DID YOU READ

SXSW…One Week Later

SXSW…One Week Later (photo)

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Sadly, my seven-year streak of attending SXSW came to an end this year. No live music for four straight days (sigh), no warm weather for an east coaster looking to escape a winter that doesn’t want to end (sigh), no discovering a handful of promising, up-and-coming indie rock bands (sigh), and no gnawing on a big Texas rib from Iron Works BBQ (sigh). My body does thank me though–I didn’t stay up past 2AM one time last week, and come to think, I don’t think I had to wait in any long lines either.

(left: Bang Bang Eche, said they were 18 years old, but looked even younger.)

Just cause I didn’t attend SXSW this year, doesn’t mean that I didn’t send spies. Oh don’t you worry, I had some eyes down there in Austin peeping the action. Equipped with a love for music and a digital camera, I had blogger/music aficionado, Sarah Pesin, capture the four days of action that I missed. Besides being wowed by sets from The Cheek, The Proclaimers, and Illinois, here are Sarah’s other top picks from SXSW 2009:

Bang Bang Eche, at Maggie Mae’s Rooftop
New Zealand’s incredibly young Bang Bang Eche were my favorite discovery at SXSW. For such a young band they have more stage presence than musicians two, three, and even four times their age. Their sound is a unique blend of pure raw energy, mixed with dance and hints of hardcore–allowing fans of various genres to enjoy their sound. I liked them so much, I saw them three times over the course of the festival!
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The Whip, at Filter Cedar Street Courtyard
I think I have to go so far as to say that The Whip make the best dance/electronic music out of any act in their respective field–they actually make the music themselves, with instruments, instead of solely relying on computers and sound-effect loops. Also, they were able to get the jam-packed courtyard–in outdoor Texas heat–to dance and pogo, which is a feat for any band. If you’re in the New York City area, make sure you catch them live. They’re playing with Late of the Pier at Bowery Ballroom on April 1 and Studio B on April 3. (I can guarantee you a great time!)

Playboy Party, at Safeway
As the second night of SXSW came to a close, I headed over to the 10th Annual Playboy Party. By the time I got there I already missed Kenan Bell and Calvin Harris, and the place was packed. Although the party took place in an old Safeway, it had an industrial elegance to make it perfect for a Playboy party. Having bars on both sides and a huge stage in the center was an ideal setup for California DJ Bassnectar, who brought the right mood to the party by getting everyone to dance. At 1:30am, the newly reunited Jane’s Addiction took the stage to a very eager audience. Having over an hour set (a rarity for SXSW), the reunited foursome played some of their greatest hits. After their incredibly energetic set, A-Trak took the stage, but by this point in time my SXSW-legs had given up the will to stand, and I headed back to my hotel after two very long days in Texas.

(top to bottom: The Whip, Lissie Trullie, The Postellles, and Hockey)

Lissie Trullie, at Fader Fort
On day two, I headed to the Fader Fort to catch one of my favorite female vocalists, Lissy Trullie. Her androgynous sound and live vocals are incredible, and not only is she extremely talented, but she’s also smoking hot with an attitude fitting of a New Yorker!

The Postelles, at Maggie Mae’s Rooftop
Starting off night three were, The Postelles, who are basically the perfect blend of The Kooks and Vampire Weekend. They remind me of the the real version of that band The Oneders (or The Wonders) from the movie That Thing You Do.

Hockey, at Peckerhead’s
Hockey are one of the best American band’s I’ve seen in a while. They remind me of a less pompous version of Razorlight, with the lead singer even looking a little bit like Johnny Borrell. Hockey’s songs are more Vampire Weekend-pop than Razorlight-rock, but they still have a similar feel to both bands’ sound.

Natalie Portman’s Shaved Head, at Fader Fort
To start off day two of SXSW I decided to see the ridiculously named, Natalie Portman’s Shaved Head, who were outrageous and not ashamed of it. They’re a dance band looking to have fun, and if that involves making fun of themselves along the way, then so be it. If interested, they’ve got an upcoming US tour with Lily Allen.

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Give Back

Last-Minute Holiday Gift Guide

Hits from the '80s are on repeat all Christmas Eve and Day on IFC.

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GIFs via Giphy, Photos via The Everett Collection

It’s the final countdown to Christmas and thanks to IFC’s movie marathon all Christmas Eve and Christmas Day, you can revel in classic ’80s films AND find inspiration for your last-minute gifts. Here are our recommendations, if you need a head start:

Musical Instrument

Great analog entertainment substitute when you refuse to give your kid the Nintendo Switch they’ve been drooling over.

Breakfast In Bed

Any significant other or child would appreciate these Uncle Buck-approved flapjacks. Just make sure you’re not stuck on clean up duty.

Cocktail Supplies

You’ll need them to get through the holidays.

Dance Lessons

So you can learn to shake-shake-shake (unless you know ghosts willing to lend a hand).

Comfy Clothes

With all the holiday meals, there may be some…embigenning.



Get even more great inspiration all Christmas Eve and Day on IFC, and remember…

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A-O Rewind

Celebrating Portlandia One Sketch at a Time

The final season of Portlandia approaches.

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GIFs via Giphy

Most people measure time in minutes, hours, days, years…At IFC, we measure it in sketches. And nothing takes us way (waaaaaay) back like Portlandia sketches. Yes, there’s a Portlandia milepost from every season that changed the way we think, behave, and pickle things. In honor of Portlandia’s 8th and final season, Subaru presents a few of our favorites.

via GIPHY

Put A Bird On It

Portlandia enters the pop-culture lexicon and inspires us to put birds on literally everything.

Colin the Chicken

Who’s your chicken, really? Behold the emerging locavore trend captured perfectly to the nth degree.

Dream Of The ’90s

This treatise on Portland made it clear that “the dream” was alive and well.

No You Go

We Americans spend most of our lives in cars. Fortunately, there’s a Portlandia sketch for every automotive situation.

A-O River!

We learned all our outdoor survival skills from Kath and Dave.

One More Episode

The true birth of binge watching, pre-Netflix. And what you’ll do once Season 8 premieres.

Catch up on Portlandia’s best moments before the 8th season premieres January 18th on IFC.

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WTF Films

Artfully Off

Celebrity All-Star by Sisters Weekend is available now on IFC's Comedy Crib.

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Sisters Weekend isn’t like other comedy groups. It’s filmmaking collaboration between besties Angelo Balassone, Michael Fails and Kat Tadesco, self-described lace-front addicts with great legs who write, direct, design and produce video sketches and cinematic shorts that are so surreally hilarious that they defy categorization. One such short film, Celebrity All-Star, is the newest addition to IFC’s Comedy Crib. Here’s what they had to say about it in a very personal email interview…

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IFC: How would you describe Celebrity All-Star to a fancy network executive you just met in an elevator?

Celebrity All-Star is a short film about an overworked reality TV coordinator struggling to save her one night off after the cast of C-List celebrities she wrangles gets locked out of their hotel rooms.

IFC: How would you describe Celebrity All-Star to a drunk friend of a friend you met in a bar?

Sisters Weekend: It’s this short we made for IFC where a talent coordinator named Karen babysits a bunch of weird c-list celebs who are stuck in a hotel bar. It’s everyone you hate from reality TV under one roof – and that roof leaks because it’s a 2-star hotel. There’s a magician, sexy cowboys, and a guy wearing a belt that sucks up his farts.

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IFC: What was the genesis of Celebrity All-Star?

Celebrity All-Star was born from our love of embarrassing celebrities. We love a good c-lister in need of a paycheck! We were really interested in the canned politeness people give off when forced to mingle with strangers. The backstory we created is that the cast of this reality show called “Celebrity All-Star” is in the middle of a mandatory round of “get to know each other” drinks in the hotel bar when the room keys stop working. Shows like Celebrity Ghost Hunters and of course The Surreal Life were of inspo, but we thought it
was funny to keep it really vague what kind of show they’re on, and just focus on everyone’s diva antics after the cameras stop rolling.

IFC: Every celebrity in Celebrity All-Star seems familiar. What real-life pop personalities did you look to for inspiration?

Sisters Weekend: Anyone who is trying to plug their branded merch that no one asked for. We love low-rent celebrity. We did, however, directly reference Kylie Jenner’s turd-raison lip color for our fictional teen celebutante Gibby Kyle (played by Mary Houlihan).

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IFC: Celebrity seems disgusting yet desirable. What’s your POV? Do you crave it, hate it, or both?

Sisters Weekend: A lot of people chase fame. If you’re practical, you’ll likely switch to chasing success and if you’re smart, you’ll hopefully switch to chasing happiness. But also, “We need money. We need hits. Hits bring money, money bring power, power bring fame, fame change the game,” Young Thug.

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IFC: Who are your comedy idols?

Sisters Weekend: Mike grew up renting “Monty Python” tapes from the library and staying up late to watch 2000’s SNL, Kat was super into Andy Kaufman and “Kids In The Hall” in high school, and Angelo was heavily influenced by “Strangers With Candy” and Anna Faris in the Scary Movie franchise, so, our comedy heroes mesh from all over. But, also we idolize a lot of the people we work with in NY-  Lorelei Ramirez, Erin Markey, Mary Houlihan, who are all in the film, Amy Zimmer, Ana Fabrega, Patti Harrison, Sam Taggart. Geniuses! All of Em!

IFC: What’s your favorite moment from the film?

Sisters Weekend: I mean…seeing Mary Houlihan scream at an insane Pomeranian on an iPad is pretty great.

See Sisters Weekend right now on IFC’s Comedy Crib

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