LA pop-punk band Wavves performed their single “Demon to Lean On,” off their recent album Afraid of Heights, many times at SXSW. Wavves creator Nathan Williams and Stephen Pope rocked out hard through seven shows in four days at the famous Austin music festival. As this live clip demonstrates, the song perfectly captures the surf-influenced band’s mixture of bleak lyrics and sunny melodies; when Williams wails, “What’s it really worth?/ No hope and no future,” it is an unnerving moment.
Regardless of the gritty words, though, Wavves’ festival video shows a joyous occasion for all. It captures the spirit of SXSW: crowdsurfing, day-drinking, dancing, Texas pride and an overall raucous energy. Refreshingly, the video includes many more close-ups of the audience than of the band itself, proving that for Wavves, their fans come first.