sxsw 2021 - ccj reviews

The CCJ takes a look at some of the most intriguing acts featured at this year's virtual SXSW Music Festival, starting with:

Connie Constance


NME calls Constance' songs "eclectic, conversational pop". The world needs good conversationalists, particularly if they came with a beat.

"Gone are the days where a singer-songwriter would just strap on an acoustic guitar and perform hushed, heartfelt anthems..." - Ali Shutler, New Music Express, 3/22/21


Apparently that observation nullifying strappers-on of acoustic guitars doesn't apply to those who prefer electric, like Phoebe Green. Aren't guitar-driven sounds supposed to be dead?  

Katy J Pearson

It seems like we hear a lot of delicate female voices on our radios and satellite streaming services these days. That seems to occur in cycles. Pearson makes it work as more than a device on the strength of her hooky melodies and interesting word choices. She is likeable, which counts for a great deal. But what about that quote from NME where singer-songwriters can no longer do hushed, heartfelt anthems?   


Sofia Valdes



Speaking of hushed balladry, how about Sophia Valdez? And then what about that power when the horns come in? 

Listening to this girl puts some of us to mind of a developing Amy Winehouse. Valdes comes from a different place culturally, but her deep Jazz influences are apparent and shared. What a find!

Baker Boy

See what happens when you hang out with hippies? You get transported from Botswana to the Australian outback. This video makes no sense but it is sure pretty and these folks are likeable. Smooth, not particularly inventive. 


The Lazy Eyes 


And this is what happens when you live on ayahuasca. Actually, no idea what's going on with these guys, who seem at first glance to be doing a Spinal Tap tribute. Whatever they are on, it should be passed around.

The Chats 


Completely lacking in originality, possibly even talent, but full of themselves in a most entertaining way!

Baby Queen 


Hope Road? There is no Hope Road, but there is Baby Queen. Always room for a new queen. This one is high on style and this reviewer is a sucker for English girl singers.

Yard Act

We are suckers for droll Brits, as well. Love this example, though the name of this band sounds like some stigmatizing detail you'd see on a police report.


Drug Store Romeos

Have we entered the Twilight Zone? Of course we have, foolish for asking. In the Drug Store Romeos - and that makes no sense, as the featured singer appears to be female - we have another of those tiny-voiced innocents acting up in our rock world. Kind of fun.


Contact Us

Grass Valley, California
P: (530) 446-6021


Who We Are

  • RARWRITER Publishing Group

    RARWRITER Publishing produces several websites covering a range of subjects from arts & entertainment to politics, public policy, and environmental issues. See the links provided to access those sites.

  •  Achives

For many years, the RARWRITER Publishing Group has been capturing stories and presenting feature articles on an international community of artists in various fields. Use the RARWRITER Archive link below to explore those past editions of, now called the Creative Culture Journal. Use the links provided there to explore issues published previous to our transition to this new format.