SXSW 2013: Horse Thief / Colourmusic

But neither string of terms does justice to the Horse Thief sound, which is the sort that takes command of a room. A SXSW volunteer standing next to me leaned over halfway through Horse Thief’s set and informed me of how amazing the band was — even though we had not said a word to each other the entire set.

Such is the power of Horse Thief.

The thrumming bass, ringing guitar chords and pounding drums come together in a surprisingly elegant and organized way, tied together by Cameron Neal’s yowling, Walkmen-esque vocals. Horse Thief has been touring the nation and Europe recently, and it’s easy to see their stage-ready confidence when watching the show.

If you haven’t checked out Horse Thief, correct this error.

Photo: Stephen Carradini

Setting up two drum sets is a good way to inform the audience that you’re about to play some heavy, loud music, and Colourmusic delivered on that promise.

The Stillwater band, preparing to release a follow-up to its 2011 album, My _____ Is Pink, rumbled through a set of heavy art rock. The two drummers often played the same beat, creating the unique visual effect of two people doing the exact same motions, right next to each other.

These dual drummers created the foundation for a dissonant roar, but a bass guitar distorted within an inch of its life, a humongous set of pedals tuned to produce all manner of strange noises from an electric guitar, and Ryan Hendrix’s howling vocals completed the sound.

With the huge, pounding tunes going on, I felt the guys of Colourmusic play as much as I heard them play. It was an impressive set, as always. —Stephen Carradini

Hey! Read This:
Colourmusic interview     
Colourmusic’s My _____ Is Pink album review     
Horse Thief interview      
The Walkmen interview     

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