SXSW Music: Street Sweeper Social Club at Rusty Spurs

Street Sweeper Social Club is a live band that needs to find a way to capture it’s live sound on record. There, I said it. That has been bothering me about the Boots Riley and Tom Morello project since the first time I saw their energetic live show opening for the NIN|JA tour last summer.

On this particular evening at the Rusty Spurs I would be treated to an even more energetic live show than those I had experienced previously. SSSC had been pretty quiet since last summer’s NIN|JA tour and the release of their first self-titled album. Now it seems they were getting back together to play some shows at SXSW and prepare to head to the studio to record a new LP.

The show at Rusty Spurs was pretty similar to those I had seen previously sans the fact that the more intimate venue was much better suited for the band’s energy. Early on in the set the crowd was pretty relaxed, many were there to see that night’s headliner, The Glitch Mob. By midway through the set, SSSC had everyone jumping around and having a blast.

They played a new song which hasn’t yet been released in Ghetto Blaster. The band would later reveal via tweet that it is to be included on their new EP. They also threw in a cover of LL Cool J’s “Momma Said Knock you Out” in addition to the set standard cover of M.I.A.’s break out track “Paper Planes”. At one point they also brought out Outernational for a version of their “Fighting Song” with both bands jam packing the tiny stage.

It was a fun and interesting show. This has nothing to do with the performance but is an anecdote I found amusing.  The showcase at the Rusty Spurs was an LA showcase featuring bands from LA. She Want’s Revenge played while I was waiting in line to get in. It was interesting to me that the whole club seemed to have a very LA attitude going on. Thus for being an LA showcase it was a smashing success.

I give Street Sweeper Social Club at Rusty Spurs 4 “magic in a bottle” out of 5


By John Coovert

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