Another Free Week is in the books and all of Austin’s local talent and generous travelers have packed up after nine days of fueling the city with free live music. Although it is possible to see live music every night in Austin, Free Week congests popular venues that usually charge covers with some real talent willing to give you a free sample.
Free Week is like a big, free coat that keeps everyone warm and makes it easier to step out in the cold weather in the name of music.
The week, (which actually runs a little over seven days), started out at Holy Mountain. Politics was wrapping up their set donning their lovely sweater vests, as we impatiently sipped on our beers and waited for Holy Wave’s evil to land on stage next. Perhaps the alcohol can be blamed for the overwhelming desire to grab a burger “really quick” from The Jackelope down the street, or maybe getting food seemed to be the easiest refuge from the slowly moving time. Needless to say, we didn’t end up catching Holy Wave.
On Tuesday, Knifight was on the bill at Mohawk and that seemed to be enough convincing to round up some troops to face the rain and go downtown. We stood elbow to elbow as the crowd became enthralled with the Austin talent and continued to stick around for Tacks, the Boy Disaster. The mood decelerated when headliner My Empty Phantom took the stage to put the crowd in a sleepy, yet mesmerizing, trance with nature-inspired minimalist looping. It sounds almost crazy to say ‘minimal’ when artist Jesse Martin Beaman is the mastermind and executor behind it all, but he mans those multiple instruments flawlessly.
Wednesday gave us our first hint that perhaps Free Week was catching on, or more people enjoy The Growlers in this city than we gave them credit for. Red 7‘s line was ridiculously hopeless, so we moseyed our way back to the comfort of Holy Mountain. Well, comfort was the intention, but we found ourselves smack dab in the middle of the heaviness of Woodgrain and Shitty Carwash. Not necessarily our cup of tea, but the many people with their fists in the air and mouths opened seemed to be enjoying it.
Despite the sometimes inevitable laziness, which we would love to blame on cold weather and subsequent colds, Free Week is a great motivation to get out and experience the crazy amount of talented folks and see them perform at some of Austin’s best venues.