Last March my band had the extreme displeasure of attending the annual SXSW festival in Austin, Texas. It would seem that what may have once been a reputable industry convention was now just another frat boy, girls-gone-wild tit and puke fest. A Mardi Gras with bands, a spring break with every sideways haircut dipshit handing you a cd of his band and telling you to "have a killer showcase, bro" FUCK OFF!!!!!
I'd be absolutely full of shit if I said there wasn't some highlights like seeing Slough Feg, Kylesa, Bible of the Devil, and Hammers of Misfortune on one bill, being mistaken for Aesop Rock and signing some autographs, and being introduced the the young men and woman of Austin locals, Blackholicus. I say young because Blackholicus are barely out of high school, if they are at all. They are fronted by the tiny Margaret, who is dwarfed by the enormous bass she seems to be wrestling. But what is age when you are fueled by the classic albums of Maiden, Cirith Ungol, and old Rush? That's right, Blackholicus play metal without the goofy trappings of any sub-genre, just metal, deal with it. Their debut album "Variations in Death Minor" has enough dual-leads and galloping riffs to sate the most curmudgeonly denim-clad geezer. Blackholicus may not be as awesome as say, Slough Feg, but when you see young kids with a working knowledge of the classics you'd have to be dead not to be thrilled. They are band that deserves your attention and support, so if you like what you hear, be sure to drop them a line (http://www.myspace.com/blackholicustheband) and buy the cd, it's packaged in a great looking digipack with cool art depicting a warrior on horseback in outerspace. Metal!