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SXSW for stay-at-home New Yorkers


xray Credit: Jackie Roman

SXSW kicks off today in Austin, Texas, and you’re stuck in New York.

But don’t feel like you’re missing out — many of the festival’s bands come from Gotham. In addition to using our weekly playlist to highlight some of the local Austin-bound acts, we spoke to O.J. San Felipe of the Brooklyn band Xray Eyeballs about his hopes for the week.

If you’re unfamiliar, the lo-fi quintet plays danceable pop with a dark side — which you can see in their video “Crystal” (though be warned, between a shared bubble bath and some voodoo-motivated violence, it is a bit NSFW).

What are you expecting to take away from SXSW? We want to take away as many tacos as possible! It’s our first festival as Xray Eyeballs, but we have been here in our other bands.

You’re playing seven shows in six days. How do you prepare for that? Lots of beer and taco power.

In the past few years, thanks to the Internet, the music video has really come back as an art form. Can you tell me about the making of “Crystal”? My friend Art Boonparn is the director, and he had the idea for a voodoo-doll/occult-type video. He used to be Miss Pussycat’s roommate in New Orleans, so he asked if she could make a doll of O.J. and she agreed. That’s how the ball got rolling. Then we just asked a bunch of our friends to be in it.

Do you think you might make a “clean” version of “Crystal”? There actually is a PG-rated version as well, for the kids.

Who else at SXSW do you want to see? Thee Oh Sees, Hunx and His Punks, Personal and the Pizzas, Reading Rainbow, Heavy Cream, Quintron and Miss Pussycat.

Listen to our playlist of other New York bands at SXSW below:

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