At a house in East Austin, near the corner of Chicano and Cesar Chavez, Romantic Rock Designs hosted an unofficial SXSW party featuring a fashion show, art showcase and punk rock concert. The Goodnight Darlings (NYC), The Stand Alones (ATX), Walk the Plank (DC) and Broken Gold (ATX) were all to play in the backyard on a stage that was built the day before, making for an extremely intimate setting. Between sets, models would show off the ‘pin-up’ inspired clothing-line, using the pathway between the house and the garage as their catwalk. No sponsor labels were to be found anywhere, just friends, art, music and good times–a shining example of what SXSW is really all about.
While all of the bands sounded great, Walk the Plank took the place by storm. During soundcheck, Alex Reimer (guitar) double checked his amp rig by playing the opening riff to Minor Threat’s “I Don’t Wanna Hear It,” as if to proclaim DC’s presence in Austin–I knew it was about to get real. The band opened with “93 South,” one of their more upbeat numbers containing an opening riff exuding late 70s punk. After the first song someone in the crowd exclaimed, “That was fucking awesome!” Honest passion and enthusiasm could clearly be felt from the guys as they powered through their set, showcasing their big, raw and energetic sound. Ian Crocker (vocals) is clearly no stranger to the stage; the man was all over the place, jumping on and off stage and weaving in and out of the crowd, getting everyone involved. At one point I was afraid he was going to tangle himself up on his microphone cable and topple over. After their set, I overheard someone tell them, “It’s clear you guys have a certain integrity about what you’re doing.” Well said, sir, whomever you are.
Thanks to Zappy Springs for the above photo.
STREAM: Walk The Plank – “Settling”