SXSW: Murder by Death

As the stage was being set up and a cello and an accordion came onto the scene, I knew I was going to love Murder by Death. I wasn’t wrong, as they opened with a rousing song about “Kentucky Bourbon,” that got the audience jumping and clapping. Throughout the entire show they delivered an energetic performance that utilized their diverse instrumentation in a unique way. Plucked cello lines harmonized with subtle accordion and keys to create the backdrop for energetic acoustic guitar strumming, bass and drums. One unique feature of Murder by Death’s live shows is that they prefaced a lot of their songs with the story behind them. “I Came Around,” one of the band’s newer releases, recounted the story of “going to the funeral of an asshole just to spite him, only to later find out that you were wrong about him.” Instrumentally sound with a strong storytelling heritage, Murder by Death delivered an honest and sincere performance of good old american folk music.

Post by Kyle Henson. His DJ show “The Roots of Pop” airs Sundays at 6 p.m.