SXSW 2010: Carolina Chocolate Drops

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SXSW 2010: Carolina Chocolate Drops

Things were bumping at the Paste party today at Galaxy Room—Assistant Editor Michael Saba even heard the phrase ”Paste is where the hawtness is!” While acts like Roky Erikson with Okkervil River and Frightened Rabbit drew a packed house, one band that deserved a much fuller audience was the Carolina Chocolate Drops. Fresh off of their first Nonesuch release, Genuine Negro Jig, the Chocolate Drops played classic old-timey string blues inspired by the likes of Josh White and the Mississippi Mud Steppers. Picking at their fiddle and banjo strings with the frantic speed of a seismograph, the trio moved between traditional folk tunes and groove-based contemporary numbers, like a cover of Blu Cantrell’s “Hit Em Up Style,” while their base pounded through the building. “It’s a genuine revenge tune,” singer Rhiannon Gibbons said, before they launched into their slow-burning, eerie version of the R&B staple. But as the base shook the beer glass in my hand so hard that brown liquid sloshed over the edge, it seemed malevolent in all the best ways.