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SXSW Music: Yellow Ostrich

I saw a lot of great bands a SXSW this year, so I’ll keep working on sharing that with you. Here’s another one!

Band: Yellow Ostrich / Hometown:NYC
Show: Billions / Venue: Antone’s / Date: 3/18

Alex Schaaf is a resourceful man. When we first encountered his project, Yellow Ostrich, it was a solo lo-fi indie folk project based in Wayne, Maine (though also tied to Wisconsin). The inevitable move to New York happened (along with the addition of drummer Michael Tapper – formerly of We Are Scientists – and the more recent addition of bassist/horn player Jon Natchez – formerly of Beirut and Bishop Allen) and the band quickly got up to speed with some extensive touring. At the group’s Bandcamp page you’ll find a number of albums (we might call this one prolific) available for pay-what-you-want. The latest, The Mistress, is available at emusic or on vinyl via Afternoon Records. Though the live experience is obviously a far cry from the dense crackle and hiss of the recordings (and – well, feels more like a rock band) the strength of Schaaf’s vocal and guitar loops still carry the songs, only now they’re bolstered by additional live instrumentation. Perhaps my expectations were low, and I was prepared for a mellower performance, but the energy onstage gave these songs (which have a memorable quality that’s hard to deny) a whole new life. Check out the photo gallery, tour dates, and more below.

Yellow Ostrich tour dates (with Wildbirds & Peacedrums:
May 30 – Toronto – The Drake Hotel
May 31 – Montreal – La Sala Rossa
June 1 – Boston – TT the Bear’s
June 3 – NYC – Mercury Lounge
June 4 – Brooklyn – Music Hall of Williamsburg
June 5 – Philadelphia – Johnny Brenda’s
June 6 – Washington DC – Black Cat Backstage

Bonus! Before Yellow Ostrich became a sought-after indie buzz band, Schaaf released Radiohead’s Kid A : Re-imagined for two pianos, two violins, two cellos, and six singers. Check it out below or here.