They say you shouldn't judge a book by its cover but sometimes when you hear, or see a band's name it makes you not want to listen to them. I have learned my lesson about this a few times but it's still all about first impressions. I didn't listen to Austin-band Leatherbag for years because I found their name unappealing and assumed they played punk/metal or some other genre that I'm not interested in. I avoided Dale Earnhardt Jr. Jr for similar reasons so, when I received a press-release about a band called Sports I threw up in my mouth a little. As a husky, young, gay boy I never gave a crap about sports and as a blogger I, generally, abhor band names that are difficult to Google but I gave Rochester, NY band, Sports a chance and I'm very glad that I did.
Sports aren't re-inventing the wheel, they are making great bar-band music with vocals that simultaneously sound like Elvis Costello and Jarvis Cocker. I have listened to their album three times in the last couple of days and every time it gets to the last song I'm a little surprised and disappointed. These songs are gems and the record seems to breeze by really quickly with only nine tracks but it's also pretty perfect that it seems to be brief. You don't want to listen to an epic record from a bar band, you want to get in and get out, preferably drunk. You can listen to some great bar music from Sports on Spotify, Bandcamp or Soundcloud. They also have their self-titled album for sale on vinyl (with CD) for $12.
Sports - Side Effect of Talk video via YouTube
Sports is the second band I'm featuring who is not playing the official SXSW music conference but they will still be in Austin for the festival and I still think you should catch one of their sets if you can. They are still scrambling to book more parties and events but as of this moment they will definitely be playing here:
- March 15: Instant Classic Records Showcase @ Weirdo's
- March 16: STPP Showcase @ The Dogwood
Keep an eye on Show List Austin, Do512 and SXShhh for other opportunities to see Sports while they're in Austin.