Saturnalia Festival 2017

2017 was a tough year for mid-tier Austin music festivals LEVITATION and Sound on Sound Festival both of which had their destination festival cancelled, then furiously rebooked acts into downtown clubs. Enter brainchild of The Electric Church guys and owners of The Sahara Lounge who hosted Saturnalia Festival at Sahara and adjacent lot next door at the Webberville Baptist Church in far East Austin last month. The three-day festival booked primarily local psych-rock, punk and garage rock acts with a few out-of-town heavy hitters like Allah Las, Cosmonauts and Crocodiles. All visuals were produced by the Mustachio Light Show, Ether Wave, Astral Violet and Lysergic Lights, Weird Destiny and Fever Dream according to Electric Church owner Levi Murray. 

Watch below as we rocked out to electro-punks, The Octopus Project with their custom, synchronized visuals, the intensity of American Sharks and the pop-psych weirdness of Annabelle Chairlegs. Matt Schweinstein (Annabelle Chairlegs – guitar) told us just before their set to expect new material as the band was in-studio at the time working on their second full-length. After seeing Schweinstein, lead vocalist/guitarist, Lindsey Mackin and bassist Derek Von Nunez Strahan and company rock the main stage, we cannot wait to hear the new record. 

Sailor Poon’s all-girl lineup turned in a super fun performance. Some of their members might bristle at that fact being pointed out and they’re not wrong. What fans should know is this band rocks out and like to have fun doing it. The set-up is fairly standard minus the lead vocalist/saxaphone player (who does that?). With monikers like Billie (sax), Cherya (drums) and Christmas (guitar), the punk esthetic is pronounced while incorporating that familiar beach-rock sound akin to Guantanamo Baywatch or Nada Surf. 

American Sharks performed at SOS Fest two years ago the last time we caught the band. We loved their intensity and super-loud guitars. In Austin, music fans can likely count on one hand the number of hardcore punk or metal acts they like as the scene isn’t nearly as robust as the neo-psych scene. Watch their return to an Austin-produced music festival below. 

Friday, December 1st – The Octopus Project,  Think No Think at Hotel Vegas.

Saturday December 2nd – American Sharks, Cosmonauts, Money Chicha at The Sahara Lounge.

Sunday December 3rd – Sailor Poon, Annabelle Chairlegs, and Amplified Heat at The Sahara Lounge.


The Octopus Project      .       Facebook      .     Bandcamp


Think No Think      .      Facebook      .      Bandcamp


American Sharks      .      Facebook      .      Soundcloud


Cosmonauts     .      Facebook      .      Bandcamp


Sailor Poon      .      Facebook      .      Bandcamp


Crocodiles     .       Bandcamp


Annabelle Chairlegs    .      Facebook      .      Bandcamp


Amplified Heat   .      Facebook      .      Bandcamp

Saturnalia 12.01.17 – Ringo Deathstarr, Octopus Project, Think No Think

Interview with Meanswell by Mike Cosmic

Meanswell is a four piece Indie-rock band from Austin, Texas who’s members have been collaborating for many years. They evolved from a band called The Gents, a folk-rock, harmony driven band, to  Meanswell a hard rock n’ roll band which is apparent on their two most recent  Bandcamp releases “Meanswell” and “Open Season”.  I had the opportunity to interview Kevin Manship (Guitar and Vocals)  and we talked about the bands new music,  and the bands future.
Upcoming Meanswell Shows:

Official Site      .      Bandcamp    .     Facebook

Beams, Abstract Class @ Cheer Up Charlie’s

Talk about late reviews and postings, but here is a blast of awesome shows that you might have missed!  

February 25, 2017 


Beams (Toronto, ON)     .     Facebook 

All the way from Toronto, we have the seven piece band, Beams, with duo vocals and a hard jamming tunes makes for a great performance. Beams is a very cool to watch live with all the sounds colliding uniformly! 




Abstract Class    .     Facebook

This performance was Abstract Class’s (formerly known as Mirrorman) first show and what better place to have a great show but other than Cheer Up Charlie’s. Abstract Class sound sends  a hypnotizing emotions through the airwaves which compliment the trios vibes. 

Interview with The Division Men by Mike Cosmic

The Division Men are a husband and wife duo, Caroline and Jesus Portillo, whose musical experiences bring a unique originality to their art form, not only musically but visually as well. A couple of months ago I had the opportunity to interview The Division Men while putting their finishing touches on their new album due out in early 2018.  Although the tour was interrupted by life’s unforeseen circumstances, plans for touring to promote their new album will continue in the spring of 2018.

Check out the video interview with The Division Men as we talk about their music, collaborations, inspirations and tour.

The Division Men     .     Official Site