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Published on Mar 28, 2012
There's so much to experience during South by Southwest at any given moment, it can be difficult to find peace amid Austin's frenetic pace and competing giant sounds. By the time we met up with Dry the River at Joe's Crab Shack's secluded patio overlooking the Colorado River, we were looking forward to giving our ears a break.
Dry the River typically writes music with big, cathartic climaxes in mind: Songs on the band's first full-length album, Shallow Bed, tend to start with miniaturized melodies that eventually burst into thunderous rock anthems. But on this particular morning, Dry the River arrived in a more intimate formation, swapping electric guitars for acoustics and its full drum set for a single snare. While this performance of the gorgeous "Bible Belt" eases back on the loudness of the original, the band by no means lacks power. The result is a hushed, stirring performance that highlights the band's many strengths — an all-too-brief oasis of calm, sandwiched by the din of guitar feedback.