SXSW Reviews: Daniel Casimir, Yoo Doo Right, Voka Gentle

20220318 Daniel Casimir

At its best, SXSW is all about the joy of discovery, of finding something brand new to you that totally blows you away and makes a lasting impression once the chaos of SXSW is over and done with. This is especially true of acts that are making truly ambitious and interesting music and of the many acts who played Austin last week, here are a few who impressed with their musical prowess and sonic explorations:

Daniel Casimir, March 18, Brush Square Park

Okay, the London-based Casimir wasn’t entirely a new discovery as I’d been turned on to his music just before heading to Austin and had made it a point to fit one of his shows into my schedule based on what I’d heard. And Casimir and his band did not disappoint.

Daniel Casimir has been a fixture on the UK jazz scene for the past few years and has appeared at SXSW in the past as a sideman for others, but this year he got the chance to showcase his own work accompanied by a stellar band. The interplay between all of the players was impressive, though I have to give a special shout out to his drummer, who not only kept the groove going on Casimir’s compositions, but elevated everything to the next level.

Yoo Doo Right, March 16, Swan Dive Patio

We made the call on Wednesday night to head out to the Pop Montreal/M pour Montreal showcase at Swan Dive and happily came across a stellar set from Yoo Doo Right, whose heavy psych/krautrock hit just the right spot at just the right time. The influence of Can is evident in the band’s name, but I also detected some Hawkwind, Pink Floyd and even hints of post-punk and shoegaze in their sound.

Voka Gentle, March 19, The Green Jay

It’s rare to see a band take to the stage on the last night of SXSW, announce that they’ve been in town for close to a week, and then go on to play what was apparently their first and only set of the festival, but if I heard it right, that’s exactly what happened on Saturday night as English band Voka Gentle took to the stage for an evening of weird and wonderful music. Or maybe it wasn’t their only show as a quick look at the band’s social media suggests they played at least one other show during the daytime, but it makes for a better story to say they only played one show. Either way, it was a show I won’t soon forget.

Posted on by Paul in South By Southwest

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