On the Scene at SXSW: Lady Sovereign

9134__lady_lLADY SOVEREIGN One of the most intriguing new artists of 2006 has to be this hilarious British MC. Signed by Jay-Z to Def Jam last fall, the quick-witted troublemaker is rumored to be working with the Beastie Boys, Timbaland, and the Neptunes for her debut U.S. album, due later this year. Looking like a spunky hip-hop cartoon with her black and white track suit, cornrows, and sideways ponytail, Sov rolled through an already-impressive canon of U.K. hits including "Random," "Ch-Ching," and "Tango" (a laugh-out-loud dis directed at girls with fake tans). Joking with the audience ("You fell in the kitchen? Did you fall off the counter?" she asked an enthusiastic fan waving crutches) and flouting Stateside drinking laws, the diminutive rapper possesses more than enough star power to have a chance to be one of the few U.K. rhymers to make a big impact in America. Download songs and videos on the Lady Sov site, AOL or MySpace.

addCredit(“Lady Sovereign: Barry Brecheisen/WireImage.com”)

SAY ANYTHING Humorously self-aware, surprisingly ambitious,and supremely infectious, this L.A. emo group led by singer Max Bemiseschews simplistic rock & roll melodrama for intricate, tanglingtunes. Rambling in a quivery voice forever balanced between broken andtriumphant, Bemis writhed with a Bright Eyes-like angst throughout hisband’s short-but-sweet SXSW show. Brilliant moments from Say Anything’srecently reissued coming-of-age debut album, …Is a Real Boy,like "Woe" and "Alive With the Glory of Love," retained their bruisedpower and unpredictability when faithfully rendered at a blisteringvolume. This gig confirmed that Bemis — who’s only in his early 20s –is an infinitely promising and engaging songwriter with a frank, uniqueperspective on love and lust that resonates with realistic ambiguities.Listen to songs and watch videos at the official Say Anything site.

LUPE FIASCO He’s a Chicago rapper most famous for lacing KanyeWest’s current hit "Touch the Sky" with its perfect, slick-talkingfinal verse, and now he’s poised to break out on his own in the comingmonths. The lanky MC has garnered accolades based on undergroundmixtapes (which include a Gorillaz mash-up and the string-ladenChi-town hit "Kick Push" about his love of skateboarding) and his SXSWperformance punctuated his down-to-earth appeal. Working a flawless,liquid flow, Lupe wowed the crowd with breathless passages featuringreferences to Cartoon Network faves and the newest digitaltechnologies. His sometimes nerdy subject matter, which bypassesboring, stereotypical gangster postures, isn’t at all corny. It’srefreshing. Check out Lupe’s skills, including the
bumping new track "Tilted," at his website.

Comments (8 total) Add your comment
  • Erin

    I love Lady Sovereign! The “Random” remix is one of my favourite songs. Her CD is amazing.

  • Doug

    not be snotty, but is Lady Sovereign “one of the most intriguing NEW ARTISTS of 2006″ even when she appeared on the cover of at least five magazines (to say nothing of those countless features) in 2005?

  • angela

    Am I the only person who has never heard of this SXSW Festival??? All of a sudden this thing has gotten so much exposure in the media — EW, The Washington Post, etc…..I’m a thirtysomething person, I’ve been around awhile, I’ve lived in the shadows of two major metropolitan areas, I have a graduate degree, I read/look at/listen to art, music, movies, etc. on a daily basis, and I have NEVER EVER heard of this thing before this year. What is the BIG deal?

  • cheriekeane

    Angela:
    You’ve probably never heard of SXSW because you may not be a die-hard music fan. I’m 41, and I don’t work in the music industry (I teach policy at CSU Northridge), but I’ve been aware of SXSW for at least the last 7-8 years (SXSW has been around a lot longer, however).
    Also, I live in L.A. so, living in a media-town gives you additional exposure to industry events by way of our local alternative newspapers (L.A. Weekly, Campus Circle, L.A. City Beat, to name a few)
    Finally, if you follow up-and coming music acts as opposed to established performers (most thirty-somethings don’t have time to find out about new music unless a friend makes them aware of a new group/singer), you may learn more about SXSW that way as well, since most new acts trying to get a record deal will play at SXSW.
    Don’t feel out of the loop — even though I’ve been aware of SXSW for a while, I have noticed that coverage has spilled over into the mainstream press more this year than ever before.
    Cheers!

  • conner

    i love your music s.o.v , i just wish my mum would let me have your album

  • ucqp cwvi

    hswrjnxzu lckjiz lzdrvfto udvqoy ekcxposui fjtchw ineg

  • gold viper

    i think lady sovereign should come to the US more often so she can spread more south

  • gold viper

    SXSW is that were she got all her cds or at the studio

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