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USA TODAY : SXSW - Thousands of Gigs Later, Fest Is A Wrap

AUSTIN — Over the last week here, more than 2,200 bands and artists performed more than 3,000 gigs in music halls, bars and even hotel lobbies.

And that's just the official number from South By Southwest. Unofficial performances throughout the city numbered in the hundreds more.

While most of the acts were up-and-coming and lesser-known, big names such as Iggy Azalea and Miley Cyrus made surprise appearances. As the week came to an end, lingering rain showers dampened outdoor venues, too.

Snapshots from a week of music :

South Korean punk rockers No Brain held down Saturday at South By Southwest. (Photo: Mike Snider, USA TODAY)South Korean punk rock godfathers No Brain were among the last performers inside the Austin Convention Center on Saturday. Lead singer Bulldaegal took seriously his job of inciting a sluggish 1 p.m. crowd, telling them their first attempt at cheering didn't match the band's previous South By Southwest audiences.

Their furious set paid homage to The Ramones and The Clash with short, straight-ahead rock songs and a dalliance with reggae. Drummer Hyoonga took the microphone to sing a song devoted to soju, a Korean alcoholic beverage. A cover of Social Distortion's Bad Luck broke down any language barriers.

By Mike Snyder

International Agent/Distribution : DFSB Kollective (No Brain)


The Austin Chronicle : 2K15 Seoulsonic @ SXSW South By Southwest

Korea Night 2: Seoulsonic
8PM The Majestic

Seoulsonic is different from the previous night's K-pop Night Out, in the sense that it focuses on the less bubbly and less commercially viable corners of the Korean music industry. Headlining is YB, a legit Korean rock band that writes songs that could easily co-headline a distant Warped Tour circa 2005. They sing in English, so you don't have any excuses. Victim Mentality are a bedazzled, leopard-print glam-metal act, which is about as ridiculous as you'd expect. The language barrier means we probably won't even know how seriously they take themselves. Big Phony makes stripped-down, empty-space folk à la Iron & Wine and Elliott Smith, which is the exact opposite of Heo's dreamy, chill-out synth-pop. Other acts include the Solutions, who deeply idealize the bygone alternative nation and Britpop revolution right down to the skinny ties, and From the Airport, who wear sunglasses and make heavy beats. Remember that outside the K-pop corporate sugar, which we all love, South Korea remains a place with musicians trying to make their way far away from the machine. SXSW exists for us to acknowledge that. – Luke Winkie

SXSW Live Shot : Victim Mentality

Korea Night II : The Revenge of Glam Metal

The Austin Chronicle [Photo By John Anderson]

We can thank South Korea for many things: bimbibap, director Park Chan-wook, Psy, and the 38th parallel among them. Now let us raise a glass of soju and toast our good fortune at discovering Seoul-based Victim Mentality. Friday brought the second half of SXSW’s Korea night, but it might as well have been 1990 at the Starwood on the Sunset Strip.

Glam metal dead? Not on your life. It’s simply changed hemispheres and now thrives on kimchi instead of the more traditional fare of blow, booze, and babes.

Playing to an overpacked crowd, the band looked the part – of Warrant’s best buddies – with hair extensions nearly to the floor and enough technicolor spandex to impress even Richard Simmons. Then guitarist Kyungho Sohn hit the first monster power chord of Korean smash “Don’t Spit on Me” and all of hair metal’s sins were forgiven in a high decibel blast of pure pop metal froth.

Frontman Krocodile lunged to the front of the stage and let loose a yowl, a come-hither glint in his eye, and more strutty swagger than Cinderella’s Tom Keifer and Skid Row’s Sebastian Bach combined. The crowd roared its approval and Victim Mentality roared right back at them.

Drummer Tarantula kept up a mid-tempo beat, occasionally kicking it up a notch, and Sohn’s fretwork can’t be faulted. Six songs in, the band closed with kickass chorus shouter “I’m Not Your Friend,” which may or may have a ring of truth to it. Certainly the long lines of autograph hounds fervently prayed that wasn’t really the case.

2K15 SXSW Seoulsonic Showcase (Planning/Production/Promotions) : DFSB Kollective x Mandoo Entertainment
International Agent/Distribution : DFSB Kollective (From The Airport/Heo/Big Phony)
International Distribution : DFSB Kollective (YB) 


MTV K : (K)Pop, Rock, Metal & More @ SXSW ’15

Courtesy of SM Entertainment

South By Southwest 2015 is well under way! The music, film, and tech show, which kicked off opening exhibitions on March 13, annually draws the hottest international talent to Austin, Texas like a giant convention magnet. Naturally, we’ve got our eyes on the music acts repping Korea this year.

Lucky for attendees (and fan-cam watchers), most of these acts will appear together in two showcases this week: K-Pop Night Out on Thursday and Korea Night II: Seoulsonic on Friday. We couldn’t have planned it better ourselves.

Of course, you don’t have to be partying it up in Austin to get the best of Asian Chairshot, Epik High, The Solutions, Victim Mentality, and all the rest — check out these essential tracks and rock on wherever you are:



SXSW’s third annual K-pop Night Out will get a grunge rock kickoff with Eastern Sidekick, the five-piece band that swept rookie awards in Korea back in 2011 and specifically captured our attention with their 2012 single “Fight for Rainbow.” Why deny it – we’re waiting for their upcoming EP, Hammer Lane, with baited breath.


Asian Chairshot’s blend of psychedelic, garage rock, and alt-rock will hit you over the head much like the outlawed wrestling move they’re named for: hard, fast, and outta nowhere. Showcase attendees should brace themselves for our personal favorite of theirs, “Mask Dance,” which won them a “Best Rock Song” nomination at the 2014 Korean Music Awards.


The Barbarettes will croon their way through through covers of golden oldies and nostalgia-inspired originals. The lovely “timeslip” trio have been stealing hearts in perfect harmony since mid-2014, when they released their debut album full of ’50s and ’60s inspired tunes.

More SXSW performances:
—March 22 @ The Palm Door on Sixth | 9PM

EE | 10:30PM

Husband and wife duo EE take their “total art performance” tagline to a level so high, pretty soon we’re going to need binoculars to see them. Every genre-defying sight and sound is perfectly crafted to engage the audience, and we’re totally hooked. On top of impressive credits like being the first Korean band to play at Cochella (2011), the pair have been extra busy lately: Check them out on Drunken Tiger’s new album and definitely don’t miss their new digital EP, Dear Door.

More SXSW performances:
—March 18 @ 405 Club | 11PM


K-pop hit production machine turned global EDM enigma HITCHHIKER is also on the list for K-Pop Night Out, and he’ll grace Elysium with the shiniest suit and the hypest beats. Check out the insane MV for his first single “11(Eleven)” below, and if you don’t feel confused enough after that, make a beeline for the remix and this hilarious profile piece. You are welcome.

More SXSW performances:
—March 17 @ Highland | 11:45PM


If we loved Crayon Pop any more, we’d probably need to be committed (click HERE to hear all about it). The five-member K-pop team is gearing up to drop new material later this month, and we’re excited to see if it lives up to viral expectations.


The one and only Epik High holds the final K-Pop Night Out showcase slot — get there early because we expect the venue will be PACKED by the time they hit the stage. It’s probably safe to expect tracks from their latest album, Shoebox, so familiarize yourself with “Spoiler” and “Happen Ending” below. You can also join us in hoping against hope for an abbreviated live version of “BORN HATER,” sans guest rappers.



The electro rock is strong in this one. The Seoulsonic 2015 showcase will satisfy all your digital cravings, starting with the guitar and synth-driven melodies of From the Airport. It wouldn’t be such a bad deal if we only hear tracks from the duo’s first full-length album You Could Imagine, but we have a good feeling that they’ll knock out fan favorites like “Colors” as well.


The Solutions call their brand of electronic rock “future pop” — we just call it gold. The duo’s 90s-Brit-pop-meets-American-alternative-meets-modern-J-pop sound is primed and ready to get the whole venue jamming to tracks off of their 2014 album, MOVEMENTS.

HEO | 10:00PM

How much does the crowd love it when HEO delivers their ambient indie rock with a dark edge? Enough to land the trio “Best Dance/Electronic Album of the Year” at the 2015 Korean Music Awards with their latest album, Structure, that’s how much. Check out “Luna” and “Word of Silence” for a taste:


This Seoul-based singer-songwriter from NYC (woo!!) makes his return to SXSW this year wielding everything from acoustic folk sounds to electronic indie rock. On this year’s schedule: An acoustic solo set on Thursday, electronic set with a band for Seoulsonic on Friday, and party with No Brain at the Funny Or Die booth.


Armed with 80′s glam metal inspiration, epic stage names like Tarantula and Krocodile, and (sometimes) a bullwhip, Victim Mentality is bringing metal to Seoulsonic 2015. On top of fan favorites “Magic Finger” and their latest single “Don’t Spit on Me”, Seoulsonic attendees should look forward to first listen privileges for tracks off of the band’s upcoming album.

More SXSW performances:
—March 18 @ Club Metropolis(Heavy Metal Pool Party) | 4:30PM
—March 18 @ Karma Lounge | 9PM

YB : 1:00AM

YB (aka Yoon Do Hyun Band aka Yoon Band) will close out the Seoulsonic showcase, a fitting spot for one of Korea’s top rock groups and a 4-time SXSW veteran. If you’re not into them yet, you’ve got nine albums of top-quality material to get started on. At a loss for where to begin? Why not their their newest English single, “Cigarette Girl?”

More SXSW performances:
—March 21 @ Lucille | 11PM

By Corynn Smith

2015 KOCCA KPop Night Out Showcase (Planning/Production/Promotions) : DFSB Kollective x SL Communications
International Distribution : DFSB Kollective (EE/Eastern Sidekick)

2K15 SXSW Seoulsonic Showcase (Planning/Production/Promotions) : DFSB Kollective x Mandoo Entertainment
International Agent/Distribution : DFSB Kollective (From The Airport/Heo/Big Phony)
International Distribution : DFSB Kollective (YB) 


Austin American Statesman : SXSW INTERNATIONAL BANDS Around the world in 5 days -- Our top SXSW international acts

Global sounds have been a part of the South by Southwest Music Festival since its beginning nearly 30 years ago, and the international component has grown yearly since. Of the nearly 2,200 bands scheduled to play this year’s event, 584 are international acts.

Though many of the artists traveling thousands of miles to share their sounds are top-billed performers in their home countries, these showcases generally take place in the shadows of high-profile headliners and buzz bands. This makes them some of the most accessible events for locals without credentials. Though all official shows offer priority entry to SXSW badge and wristband holders, it’s possible to pay a cover charge of $5-$20 at many international showcases. As Austin has grown as an international city, these shows have become rich gathering spots for local expats from around the world.

Over the past five years or so, Latin music has flourished at the festival, with many South American countries represented in their own showcases. This year’s lineup includes dedicated nights for Chile, Uruguay and Colombia. On the Asian front, Japan Nite, one of the flagship international fest events, celebrates 20 years this year, Korea expands to two nights of dedicated showcases, and for the first time Pakistan has a big presence at the festival.

The festival provides an incredible opportunity for Austinites to explore the world without leaving our own city limits, and this guide is an overview of the places you can go.


KPop Night Out at Elysium: Korean music at the fest has grown into two big showcases, and though this one is billed as KPop, the styles represented go deeper than the saccharine manufactured pop songs associated with the genre. Highlights include retro doo-wop girl group the Barberettes, who play at 9:30 p.m., and excellent hip-hop outfit Epik High, who close the show out at 1:10 a.m. (Korea Night II, Seoulsonic, is Friday at the Majestic) — D.S.S.

By Nancy Flores and Deborah Sengupta Stith

2015 KOCCA KPop Night Out Showcase (Planning/Production/Promotions) : DFSB Kollective x SL Communications
International Distribution : DFSB Kollective (EE/Eastern Sidekick)


SXSW.com/Music : 2nd Korean Showcase Added to the SXSW Music 2015 Schedule!

Photos (clockwise from top left): YB, From the Airport, Victim Mentality, Big Phony All photos courtesy of the artists

Korea Night II : Seoulsonic, a second showcase of Korean acts, has been added on Friday, March 20 at The Majestic (419 E 6th St). This will be the 5th annual Seoulsonic showcase.

Hosted by the cast of KTown Cowboys, a full-length comedy feature based on the popular web series which will be premiering at SXSW this year, this Seoulsonic showcase features a diverse range of talent ranging from KTown Cowboys star Bobby Choy’s Elliott Smith-meets-The Postal Service musical project Big Phony, to arena rock legend Yoon Do Hyun’s rock band YB, head-turning hair metal act Victim Mentality, moody electronic rock experimentalists HEO and the indie dance pop of The Solutions and From The Airport.

Korea Night I : KPop Night Out will be held the previous day on Thursday, March 19 at Elysium with Epik High, The Barberettes, Crayon Pop, Hitchhiker, EE, Eastern Sidekick and Asian Chairshot.

Doors will open at 7:00PM for both showcases. Music and Platinum Badge holders, as well as Music Wristband holders, will receive priority admission. If you haven't already, it's not too late to register.

By James Minor

2K15 SXSW Seoulsonic Showcase (Planning/Production/Promotions) : DFSB Kollective x Mandoo Entertainment
International Agent/Distribution : DFSB Kollective (From The Airport/Heo/Big Phony)
International Distribution : DFSB Kollective (YB) 

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