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Most young bands work diligently toward creating their “big break,” the key moment that ushers in a level of recognition which allows them to make a living off their art. Whether it is a well regarded SXSW showcase performance, the support of an influential radio DJ such as Steve Lamacq (or John Peel, once upon a time), or getting picked up by a respected indie label, this tipping point is the goal for most acts trying to make a name for themselves. My guess is that a handful of Austin-based acts are in for just such a moment when Matador Records releases Casual Victim Pile: Austin 2010 on January 26, 2010. The compendium brings together nineteen different emerging Texas bands, each of whom contribute one song to form a snapshot of the music mecca’s current local indie rock scene.
One such group is Follow That Bird!, who provide “Ghosts That Wake You,” a fiery mash of electric guitar and syncopated drums. Judging from her performance, vocalist/guitarist Lauren Green likely counts Sleater-Kinney’s Corin Tucker and Carrie Brownstein among her chief influences; while Follow That Bird! never quite veer into riot grrrl territory, the emphatic vocals and toothed riffs are rooted in the same feverish terroir. However, with its hard driving beat and bravado, the band’s overall sound is grounded more in the tradition of iconic rock performers, both indie and otherwise: Delta 5, Bikini Kill, The Pretenders, L7, Siouxsie and the Banshees, and even early Hole are all pieces of the puzzle. “Ghosts That Wake You” is an assertive bit of songwriting from a band which–ike many of its neighbors–may be earning itself a larger spotlight come January.