SXSW 2016: BEST ARTISTS DAY 5
Photos by BitCandy Photographer Chris Chan.
Well guys, we’ve done it again— We’ve made it through another year of crowds, weird weather, and more amazing bands than we can handle at SXSW. Read on as we experience the final night of SXSW 2016, where we caught some awesome and totally memorable acts from No Age, Neon Indian, Talib Kweli, and plenty of awesome new artists that we can’t wait to share with you now. While you guys catch up, we’re going to go relax and finally check out 'Pee Wee’s Big Holiday.' Thanks for sticking around!
We kicked off our final night of our musical adventure at Mohawk where we’d stick around for a couple of awesome bands presented by FFF Fest (that’s Fun Fun Fun Fest by the way). We first caught Seattle-based garage rock/soul trio NIGHT BEATS who jammed through some seriously psychedelic tunes. Lead singer Danny Lee Blackwell’s hazy croon felt like a kiss of warm sunshine, while the jangly guitars made for an awesomely loud start to our evening.
Los Angeles-based noise duo NO AGE kept us hanging around Mohawk as they always put on a great show. LA sure loves its hazy, lo-fi goodness. We hope they put out a new album soon!
Denton, Texas’ own NEON INDIAN was the last act we’d catch at the Mohawk, and as usual Alan Palomo blew away the crowd with his dreamy electronic sound that we can never get enough of. His latest album, VEGA INTL. Night School was one of our favorites from 2015, so we we’re pretty stoked for this set.
Of course Whole Foods Market would have a presence at SXSW, right? Well we headed towards the organic and gluten-free paradise to catch none other than rapper TALIB KWELI’s set that was part of the Quantum Collective Southwest Invasion. Talib took a break from clapping back (rightfully so) at aging rocker Gene Simmons to deliver a solid set.
We then headed over to ACL Live to check out COAST MODERN’S set that was packed full of easy going indie-pop goodness that we totally loved. The Los Angeles-based duo kept the crowd enthused with playful 808 beats and infectious vocals that made us fall in love with 2015’s "Hollow Life."
Dutch pop songstress JANNE SCHRA kept up our energy with her infectious retro pop melodies at the Holiday Inn Garden 18th Floor. The world needs more pop artists like this, and her set made us eager for her upcoming album, Ponzo Light.
Berlin, Germany’s IAN FISHER is a singer songwriter who is quickly gaining a following with his debut album, Nero. We headed down to Lambert’s to check out the 27 year old’s set, where we were pleasantly surprised by his indie-folk songs and smooth croon that all made sense when we learned he was raised on a farm in Missouri. We highly recommend his track, “Constant Vacation,” as it features a great guitar hook that will instantly stick in your head.
Toronto-based trio FOR ESME was one of the best synth-pop groups of the weekend with their dark and moody electronic sound that we experienced at their Barracuda set. Lead singer Martha Meredith’s distinct vocals and memorable lyrics were completely mesmerizing while bandmates Nathan and Dave created some seriously mystical soundscapes that we totally loved.
We’re sure Austin-based seven piece WILD CHILD felt right at home as they tore through their set at St David’s Historical that helped us reach the end of our night. Their uplifting melodies, warm keys, and adorable girl-boy vocals kept us smiling through their whole set. We very much recommend checking out their latest album, Fools.
THE NATIONAL PARKS
We decided to stick around and end our final South by Southwest night of festivities at Lambert’s where Utah-based band THE NATIONAL PARKS delivered an energetic and delightful set. We think it’s just a matter of time before you’ll be hearing these guys on the radio in between popular indie-folk acts like The Lumineers and Of Monsters and Men, but their uplifting pop-style makes them stand out from the crowd.
Thanks to everyone who stuck around and help us make it though our coverage of South By Southwest 2016! I’d like to give a huge shout out and thank you to our very special BitCandy photographer, Chris Chan, who was a total trooper through it all. See ya next year, SXSW!
About Erin Crider
Erin Crider eats, breathes, and sleeps pop culture. If you have a question about a one-hit wonder from the ‘90s or need help remembering lines from a SNL skit, she’s your girl. When she isn’t lurking the internet, she's either going to a show or hanging out at Disneyland. Erin lives in Southern California and has a B.A. in Creative Writing from Cal State Long Beach.