SXSW has been an integral part of Austin since its inception in 1987. While a plethora of artists come from all over the world to perform, many local artists give back to the community by providing free shows.
Story by Miles Eackles
We’ve gathered some local artist you should keep in mind in preparation of the weeklong festival happening March 11-17 next year.
This Austin synthpop and shoegaze band is made up of two pairs of husbands and wives. Conceived in the summer of 2015, this band’s close relationship with each other is illustrated through their music. On Oct. 26 they released their new album, “The Truth.” “I think this year we are expecting (hopefully) to reach a bigger audience and expand our fanbase beyond Texas,” band member Michelle Soto said. “With a full album completely in production, we have a lot to share very soon.”
This Austin-based jazz band is a medley of artists from different musical backgrounds. Only being a seasonal performing band, this seven person ensemble has rocked audiences at festivals such as KUTX Summer Jam, Utopia Fest and Austin Reggae Fest. Not to mention they’ve opened for big acts such as Willie Nelson. Their most recent album, “Shine”, is a jazzy collection of songs that showcases the band’s incredible instrumental chops. Before SXSW, you can catch them performing October 28th and November 17th at Half Step and Saturnalia respectively.
Darkbird really emphasizes the true nature of rock music. Electrifying guitars and bombastic drums are splattered all throughout their music. The band is the result of a collaboration between lead singer Kelly Barnes and leadguitarist Brian Cole. Busy working on new material, they won’t be performing before SXSW, so try to catch them when they perform in March.
Although Fanclub doesn’t have too much music available to their perfect blend of woozy dream pop and alternative rock makes those that are out all that more worth the wait. “We are super stoked to be accepted as an official SXSW artist for 2019,” lead singer Leslie said. “We’re such a new band; all of our material is new. We will, however, be playing songs off of our brand new EP All The Same that will be released a few months prior to SXSW.” Look out for this trio because they’re definitely headed to big things.
The mysterious artist known as fuvk got her name from, according to Almost Real Things, a “friend sent me a message and typo’d the F word as fuvk right as I was making my Bandcamp page”. Her music is a mixed bag of different genres from lo-fi to electronic. “You can expect some new arrangements and new live band members,” fuvk said. “And maybe a few voice cracks.” While not many things are known about fuvk, you can find out more and potentially interact with her at SXSW.
This Chicago-native reggae band has made the big move to Austin, TX. With a blithe look to match their laid back sound, the quartet is sure to turn some heads at this upcoming SXSW. Their most recent album, Same Situation, was released in June 2017. Although there hasn’t been much talk about new music in the works, it’s safe to assume that new material will be performed at their SXSW set.
This indie pop duo has been performing in and around Austin for over a decade. While the duo is currently based in Nashville, Tennessee, they always come back to the live music capital of the world. They have two projects entitled “Like a Love This” and “Looking For Magic” releasing in fall 2018 and spring 2019 respectively. Their music primarily focuses on themes on loss and maturity. With praise from publications such as Wired and Billboard, this duo is definitely worth a listen.
Michael J Winningham, famously known as Palo Duro, broke away from his former band Gold Beach to make more soulful music. Winningham stays busy by juggling live shows and preparing for a new album scheduled for a spring 2019 release. Unfortunately, there aren’t any upcoming shows prior to his SXSW performance so it’s best to listen to some of his songs in the playlist listed below and experience his soulful croon when March arrives.
PASTEL GOTH’s music is hard to categorize to one genre. Her glitchy use of instrumentation suggests that she does electronica; however, her dazed use of synths in many of her songs suggests that she’s a dream-pop artist. Her latest LP, ETHEREALITY, was released on Oct 5 with Cleopatra Records. You can get a taste of her music from the playlist listed below.
Sphynx has followed the Austin tradition and performed in house parties and dive bars throughout the U.S. Their breakout year was in 2007 when they opened for acts such as Questlove and Walk The Moon. With cameos from the television show “Nashville” to appearing in prominent music magazine “The Music Site,” this trio has flown effortlessly through the entertainment sphere. This March, they’ll be back home to perform a set at SXSW.
To check out these Austinites do what they do best, ORANGE curated an exclusive playlist just for you. Happy listening!