The Best Music We Saw at SXSW 2019

A downsized 2019 version of South By Southwest intended no limitless traces to see area-sized headliners play small golf equipment. Except for a J Balvin drop-in, the biggest acts on the Austin fest had been arguably longtime indie staple Broken Social Scene and Outkast’s Big Boi. But that allowed for the sort of chase that made SXSW so unique in its infancy: the quest to capture the following massive thing on their manner up. Here are 10 acts that stood out from the p.C. Lizzo (Stubbs BBQ) Lizzo’s jaw-losing, celebrity-making overall performance at Ticketmaster’s SXSW exhibit was our top pick of the festival, but it’s worth reiterating how useful — and entertaining — songs like “Juice” and “Boys” are after they’re executed live. The scene: three plus-sized ladies busting out amazingly athletic dance moves at the same time as Lizzo herself preaches frame-positivity and self-love even as displaying her unshakeable self-belief. Lizzie can wail: when she hits the excessive notes, she HITS THE HIGH NOTES. Her Coachella units and her approaching complete-length most important-label debut (out April 19 on Atlantic) must propel her from cult sensation to movie star fame.

Ross Golan is a successful songwriter who’s labored with pop stars like Charli XCX and the host of the famous podcast “And the Writer Is…,” so it’s no surprise he is aware of his manner around a hook. But this one-off, solo-acoustic performance of his rock opera “The Wrong Man” (developing soon as an album on Interscope and an off-Broadway level show) changed into so much greater than that: the Lin Manuel Miranda-meets-Dashboard Confessional performance turned into a masterclass in storytelling, with Golan adopting the voice of each of the characters in a shifting story approximately a man wrongly accused of murder. By the give up, each tune’s refrain weaves around every different in a real show of songwriting prowess. Just exceptional. The Nude Party (Barracuda Outdoors) This shambolic Upstate New York-by means of-manner-of-North Carolina band isn’t reinventing the wheel. However, that’s the point. Take the Velvet Underground’s meandering melodies, the Rolling Stones’ swagger, Arcade Fire’s gang vocals, and the Old ‘97s’ united states-rock ‘tude, positioned them in a blender, and out would pop the Nude Party, which has about six too many individuals (and 4 too few microphones) — however all of the higher for onstage unpredictability. White Denim (Cedar Street Courtyard) Flood Magazine’s annual FloodFest at Cedar Street has a popularity for reserving some of the most important artists doing the SXSW circuit, and this yr turned into no exception: each Broken Social Scene and Big Boi performed the occasion, but the spotlight may have been White Denim’s spectacular set. The Austin-based band is SXSW veterans. However, this 12 months’ new release is their freest-flowing but, with frontman James Petralli nailing lick after ordinary-time lick. Is Rock dead? Hardly. Odessa (Geraldine’s) An invite-best songwriters circle at Geraldine’s eating place at the Hotel Van Zandt changed into hosted via hitmaker Nathaniel Rateliff. However, Los Angeles-based singer Odessa became who made the largest impact. Her track approximately rainfall turned into followed best by her tapping out percussion on a guitar to mimic the drops falling on a rooftop. Odessa ’s shifting voice — at instances quiet and reflective, at different instances attaining and hopeful — entranced the group who looked on in shocked, pin-drop silence. Susto (Lucy’s Fried Chicken) Charleston’s Susto has gravelly singing, memorable hooks, and dynamic songwriting that’s tailor-made for enthusiasts of “Summerteeth”-era Wilco and the catalog of Dr. Dog. At Lucy’s, the band gained over a crowd of locals who’d packed the area for Willie’s son Lukas Nelson and his band Promise of the Real. Though the gang wasn’t necessarily familiar with Susto’s groove-inducing rock, many, many booties were shaking along via the set. Kosha Dillz’s Oy Vey! Showcase (The Parish) Things got so warm throughout Jewish rapper Kosha Dillz’ annual Oy Vey! Showcase — now in its 8th 12 months — that a person prompts a hearth extinguisher, literally. Just earlier than headliner Gangsta Boo (of Three Six Mafia) become set to perform, the whole room full of smoke and absolutely everyone on stage started wondering whether or not something had long past off. It hadn’t — and Boo knew it, pushing on hard for the duration of a show Dillz billed as a display of “anti-antisemitism,” which also blanketed a wide range of oddball characters, consisting of costumed rockers Fragile Rock and Tel Aviv people duo JonZ. Golden Dawn Arkestra (Hotel Vegas) Over-the-pinnacle, ridiculous spectacles are a hallmark of SXSW and for the past few years a spotting of Golden Dawn Arkestra — a collective from Saturn, TX who seems to be from Saturn, the planet — were at the top of the heap. The track (played utilizing at least a dozen musicians) is a party-hearty amalgam of Sun Ra, Femi Kuti, and the Flaming Lips — an interstellar party that needs to be seen to be believed. Andrew Bird & Yola (The Line Hotel) Before his show on Saturday at the fest’s largest performance area, the open-to-the-public theater at Auditorium Shores, folky singer Andrew Bird hosted an invite-simplest party for a pair-hundred visitors on the rooftop restaurant on the Line Hotel. The event doubled as a possibility to shoot his ongoing collaborative YouTube collection “Live From The Great Room.” The spotlight, rather, wasn’t his first visitor, T Bone Burnett (who turned what became meant to be a duet into an interview section) but newcomer Yola, who — rightfully — self-identifies because of the Queen of Country Soul. The two singers had only met hours earlier than, but their 30-minute set become pure, special magic — Yola’s harmonies enunciating Bird’s lyrical melodies, and his violin-plucking giving a solid platform for her voice to bounce. It wouldn’t be unexpected for this collaboration to spawn many more: there was a clean mutual admiration among the duo, who served each other as close to-ideal enhances. Beautiful. Moritz Simon Geist (Seven Grand) Dresden and Berlin-based beatmaker Moritz Simon Geist is a step beforehand of his friends about a live display, as he proved at some stage in SXSW over multiple engagements to each person lucky sufficient to have stuck his set. Watching the great German carry out digital song live is corresponding to viewing a mad scientist in a lab… and in his cell lab are small analog hand-constructed motors that click on, three-D-published robot-kalimbas that vibrate, salvaged components from old difficult drives that were — all installation in a triangle tower of techno. (He calls it “Tripod One,” in line with his website, which notes that the “kinetic sculpture is played stay as a music tool in an AV-overall performance as small mechanics and physical tone-turbines insides the sculpture produce the noises used in the musical context.”) Geist wanders back from his tower to a desk, in which he staffs the desk overseeing additional conventional techno making tools, along with a drum machine. He calls himself a “performer, musicologist, and robotics engineer,” and your friends who go to museums may like him just as a good deal as your friends who visit underground techno indicates to do.

Duane Simpson

Internet fan. Zombie aficionado. Infuriatingly humble problem solver. Alcohol enthusiast. Spent several months exporting UFOs in Jacksonville, FL. A real dynamo when it comes to exporting gravy in Tampa, FL. Spent 2001-2004 implementing saliva in Edison, NJ. Had moderate success getting my feet wet with junk food on Wall Street. Practiced in the art of building Virgin Mary figurines in Tampa, FL. Practiced in the art of marketing Roombas in Phoenix, AZ.

Related Articles

Back to top button