This article is part of the SXSW Guide / Anti-Guide series.
Andrew "Garbage Day" Miller definitely listened to every band listed on the 2012 SXSW schedule, and it's just a strange coincidence that all his recommendations begin with either "A" or some relatively underrepresented letter.
I guess I'll cover the Anti-Guide stuff first, because I don't want to end on a bad note, and these are the worst notes.
MAGGIE MAE'S ROOFTOP
SATURDAY, MARCH 17 8:00PM -8:40PM
Would you think that a band that named itself The Art might be prone to horrible creative decisions? Still, holy shit, this video. If you have a problem with Greasy Anchor-Tattoo Mascara Man writhing under a rainbow next to a waterfall, take it up with the band members - at least two have responded in YouTube's comments section! One says "I just hope that you contribute some form of art to the world instead of just breeding and submitting to this capitolist world." Another adds "We are not machines pumping out coke a cola for you." Ladies and gentlemen,"The Art" lmao
THURSDAY, MARCH 15 8:00PM -8:40PM
This Ear PWR video, available on YouTube, features rampant toplessness. Not just a quick flash; bare breasts, throughout the clip. It has 7,103 views. This terrible YouTube channel, which subsists entirely on cleavage thumbnails, has 44,438,295 views. Would it be fair to say the difference between the totals is that the people who click on Harold and Beth's clips aren't subjected to Ear PWR's music? Before you answer, watch this video. It's over-the-top obnoxious, the perfect bait for the anti-'hipster' contingent to post on Facebook alongside an inarticulate rant. 30,668 views. Ear PWR can't even get the laziest clip-consumers on the Internet to click on its videos; how could it possibly lure anyone to its live show?
YOU SAY FRANCE & I WHISTLE
FRIDAY, MARCH 16 9:00PM - 9:40PM
You know, if you can get past the stupid band name and the fact that this song is called "OMG" and the furry-fandom vibes the video radiates, the music is still pretty fucking unbearable.
THE AMERICAN SECRETS
IFC CROSSROADS HOUSE AT VICE
FRIDAY, MARCH 16 11:00PM -11:40PM
"You may recognize The American Secrets as the freecreditscore.com band. Get to kno -" let me stop you right there.
Are you concerned that you may be a character trapped in a Tom Waits song? Be smart and learn the warning signs before it's too late. Also, it's too late. It has always been too late.
I'm haunted by a recurring vision of a skeleton flipping me off. To avoid seeing this terrifying image in bumper sticker form, I pay someone with a blank bumper to drive in front of me at all times.
The Something Awful front page news tackles anything both off and on the Internet. Mostly "on" though, as we're all incredible nerds.
SA music writers point out cool bands to see at SXSW (or listen to at home, if you're not going). Also they warn about dumb bands you should avoid!