Friday, June 05, 2009

The Award-Winning SXSW winners "The Black and White Years" to open for KanYe West and Basement Jaxx at London's Wireless Festival

Austin indie electro dance rockers, The Black and White Years, will make their debut performance in London at the Wireless Festival in Hyde Park. The band is scheduled to play both dates of the two-day festival with headliners Basement Jaxx on July 4th and KanYe West on July 5th.

The Black and White Years were the standout band at 2009's South by Southwest with four outstanding showcases including a performance with Devo, Tricky and Datarock; plus a relentless week that kicked off by winning five major awards at the 27th Annual Austin Music Awards, the ceremony which marks the beginning of the SXSW Music Festival.

When revealing the band's achievement to the capacity audience at the Austin Music Hall, acclaimed journalist and Austin DJ, Andy Langer, who hosted the Austin Music Awards, announced, "The Black and White Years are tonight's big winners with five awards... a SWEEP!"

The Austin, Texas four-piece were presented with SXSW trophies for Best New Band and Best Song for their single, Power to Change, Best Performing Band - Rock and Best Bass Player (John Aldridge). In addition, Jerry Harrison (Talking Heads, Modern Lovers) won the award for Best Producer of the Year for his work on The Black And White Years' eponymous debut album.
Jerry Harrison first saw The Black And White Years' live performance in a parking lot amongst a handful of people during SXSW 2007 and was immediately taken by the quirky arrangements and lyrical themes. Soon after, Harrison produced the band's debut album in Sausalito Sound Studios.

The single, "Power to Change," became a hit song in Austin after the city's key rock station, KROX-FM, added it into full-time rotation after nearly a year of airplay on their weekly new music program, Next Big Thing. The song became one of the station's most requested favorites, while garnering airplay in other U.S. markets, most notably, Albany, were it spent four weeks at #1 on WEQX.

The band has become a fixture in Austin's legendary club scene via its high-energy sets that are true to the "electro-dance-rock" label that has often been used to describe them and the "wild-eyed, compulsive shuddering" performance of lead singer and writer, Scott Butler. The band has also taken this live experience out of the clubs and to the masses, performing at Austin City Limits Music Festival, CMJ Music Marathon, MIDEM, and now, London's Wireless Festival in July.

The album, The Black and White Years, was released nationally in the U.S. in September 2008 through ADA/Adrenaline after gaining momentum over the year as an "Austin-only" release on the Texas-based independent label, Brando Records.

The album is available in the UK on iTunes. A UK edition of their debut album, featuring five brand new tracks, will be released throughout the UK and the rest of Europe in early 2010. Meanwhile, the band is currently recording its second album and planning their first American tour in September.