SXSW 2016: BEST ARTISTS DAY 2
All photography by Christopher Chan
This week of no sleep has flown by! Our heads are pounding, can’t tell if it’s from the music, dehydration, or running on four hours of sleep. That’s what SXSW does to you, but catching impressive sets put on by all the indie artists makes it all worth it. During day two of the music festival we tried to fit in as many acts as we possibly could in order to bring you the best of the best. Read on to see how we spent our day and discover which artists we are totally loving.
Our day started with access to the SXSW Music Conference hosted by Queen Latifah with Michelle Obama, Missy Elliot, Sophia Bush, and Diane Warren as speakers. It was pretty incredible to hear the panel of great women talk and touch on music and passion. The emphasis was on the importance of girls’ education worldwide. We got really good insight and amazing pictures from our photographer Christopher Chan. The First Lady’s expression is #priceless
We kicked off the music part of the day at the AdHoc Unofficial Showcase [Day Show] @ Cheer Up Charlies. The Columbus Ohio band All Dogs is the fun loud music that one could imagine listening to at some underground show. Part rock, part pop, and a whole lot of punk the rising talent kept things feeling fresh and played songs from their debut album, Kicking Every Day.
Frankie Cosmos was just Greta Kline and a friend. The set was super stripped down, I mean like more stripped down that what she already offers. Even though the sound was not all that great and each song sounded exactly like the previous one, we were charmed with Kline’s presence and composure. Our prediction is that with the full band in place they will continue to gain popularity and gain some radio play after their new album drops in April.
It was just Katie Crutchfield and her guitar. The folk pop songstress sounded really good up on on stage and she’s super good at making things feel intimate. All the elements of her style shined during her performance. There is nothing quite out there that compares to her lo-fi warm melodies.
Already successful in the land down under, Australian trio Methyl Ethel was one of our favoritist discoveries of the day. They gave us swanky dark pop vibes and we were eating that stuff up like pudding. Their songs were dizzyingly stunning and left us wanting to know more about them. For now, this set will do, but consider us fans!
No one on Wednesday gave it their all as much as punk band Beach Slang. Truly masters at what they do and man, their passion showed. Frontman James Alex yelled he was here to punch us in the heart, and he sure did. It was such a crazy show, we were all feeling the vibes and freaking loving it. It is performances like Beach Slang that reminds us what we love so much about SXSW. The soundcloud link below doesn't do their sound justice. It’s a band you have to see live to truly appreciate their talent.
Having recently released a debut album, Long Way Home, British singer Lapsley is well on her way to being a breakthrough artist. It was amazing how perfect the set sounded, something that is rare at festivals. We were lost in Lapsley’s gliding vocals and blissful backdrop, it was such a mesmerizing performance.
Another great performance of the day was Los Angeles solo project Clara Nova. Her melodic hooks and playful voice make her effortlessly cool. She’s an artist that is quickly finding her place in the industry and winning people over. Don’t be surprised if she makes it big.
AND THE KIDS
Indie band And The Kids is one of the most fascinating acts of the last couple of years. Mega quirky and smart, the Massachusetts trio is the boldest thing out there. They’ve been recognized by NPR as one of the best acts to watch here at SXSW this year and we can confirm without a doubt that they are better than what we expected. Check out their Tiny Desk performance below, it’s perfect.
Another name with a promising career is indie artist Matt Woods. Isn’t he dreamy?! Everything about him is breathtaking, so much talent inside such a perfect man. In the past year he rose to become a viral sensation with his single “Impression,” and here at SXSW we are physically witnessing what is to become a phenomenon. Stay tuned for his debut album release, we hear it’s going to be monster!
New York band Oberhofer is a band that you don’t really hear much of because there is no hype surrounding them, but they are the sound that can easily be incorporated into your everyday routine. They’ll take the boring out and boost you with psychedelic cool toned vibes to make your dull life a bit more interesting. They deserve more credit, give them more credit, c’mon man!
Singer-songwriter Eleanor Friedberger has the sound of good ol’ ‘Murican music. It’s mellow rock that strikes similar sounds acts like Jefferson Airplane and other late 1960’s musicians. Her sound is mature for sure, but she’s so effing cool. And now for a little nostalgia from footage of SXSW back in the formative years where there were no lines to see Iggy Pop or Wayne Coyne, here’s the music video for “Never Is A Long Time.”
We wrap up Wednesday’s by stuffing ourselves inside the packed house of the Mohawk House of Vans and waited a long half hour to see the performance of the amazing and great Erykah Badu. Ha! I feel like I’m introducing some sort of magician, in a sense I am am because she was magical up on stage. She played all her greatest hits! P.S. the woman is BEAUTIFUL!
Stick around for more coverage to follow. We’re working overtime to bring you the best, the greatest, the most memorable experiences of SXSW 2016 for you.
About Beca Arredondo
Beca Arredondo is easily unamused with all things not related to her interests. On her good days you can catch her avoiding the California sun and glued to her Mac plotting the next big thing. If you happen to run into her on the street and notice her wearing headphones do NOT disturb her. She is not responsible for any possible damage. Aside from the above she's very sweet and perky and responds well to good music and food.