Photo: Charles Reagan
For two consecutive weekends, Austin City Limits takes over Zilker Park in Austin, TX and brings in over 130 acts across 8 stages to hundreds and thousands of fans. With artists such as Paul McCartney, Metallica, Travis Scott, Arctic Monkeys, and CHVRCHES, there was a true vast array of genres for just about anyone. Austin City Limits was surely the place to be with a great mixture of emerging to headlining bands on the roster. Neither the scorching heat nor the rain clouds discouraged the ecstatic fans from catching their favorite acts during Weekend 1.
Festival highlights included: Paul McCartney’s only scheduled North American festival performance, a visually-incredible set by ODESZA, craft beer & an ACL Fest beer discussion and meet & greet series led by the Brewmasters themselves, a second location addition to ACL Eats food court providing festival goers with even more delicious local bites, and the nightly Silent Disco parties hosted by Quiet Events where attendees can quietly groove to tunes from live DJs.
Below, we’ve compiled a behind-the-scenes look at some of the best emerging acts that appeared at Austin City Limits: slenderbodies, Houndmouth, Wilderado, flor, Mt. Joy, and A R I Z O N A.
slenderbodies’ soft falsetto vocals paired with intricate airy guitars bring forth vivid imagery, and that’s exactly what we experienced at the festival. The California-based duo recorded their debut album, sotto voce, over the span of a month and 380 miles resulting in a sonically soft collection of songs painting sultry nights with foreign lovers, lost romance, and home. Their most recent release Fabulist – Extended provides pink hues, lush gold, lucid dreams and the quavering sound of the wind. There’s nothing quite like it, and it would be a shame to miss the chance to experience such a thing live.
For more on slenderbodies:
Hailing from New Albany, Indiana, Houndmouth –Matt Myers, Zak Appleby, and Shane Cody– is redefining their own experimental modern music style. You may recognize them from their #1 hit radio single “Sedona,” or possibly from their performances on Letterman, Conan, CBS This Morning or touring with the Alabama Shakes and The Lumineers. Their long-awaited release of their new album, Golden Age, introduced a new sound direction of pop-synth meets indie-soul that’s quickly gaining tracking at alternative radio.
For more on Houndmouth:
The Tulsa, Oklahoma, indie rockers Wilderado create music that feels dreamy and intrinsically timeless. Their songs are marked by twangy, well-crooned, harmonies with sounds inspired by the Malibu home where they first got their start. The quartet is creating their unique style by merging pulsing indie rock, heartfelt folk, their southern spirit, along with southern California levity to generate a sound and performance that feels like home. They just kicked off tour so mark your calendars and be sure to catch them.
flor is known for their ability to blend indie rock and synth-pop into an atmospherically mellow sound. Zach Grace, Dylan Bauld, and McKinley Kitts grew up together in a tiny town of Hood River, Oregon, and created music together since they were teenagers. Soon after, they brought on Kyle Hill and took on the name flor —a word that translates to “flower” in Portuguese. Their songs explore the feelings of heartache, anxiety, longing, and self-doubt. With the success of their debut album, come out. you’re hiding, fans are eagerly wanting and waiting for more.
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Raised in Philadelphia and shaped by Los Angeles, Mt. Joy is an indie folk five-piece with a tinge of soulful rock. It didn’t take long for their song “Astrovan” to rack up over 5 million streams to date leading the band to quit their day jobs to turned their music careers from part-time to full-time. Word began to spread quickly about Mt. Joy and their richly textured style. As the band made a growing name for themselves, they will release their self-titled debut album later this year.
A R I Z O N A
The three-piece electro-pop group A R I Z O N A consists of guitarist Nate, vocalist Zach, and keyboardist David who met and formed through attending Berklee College of Music and Emerson College. The group’s ability to transform keys, vocals, and guitars into a blend of indie, alternative, and electronic dance pop complete with old synth sounds and ringing guitars captured the hearts of heart-throbbed live audiences across the nation. They are no doubt a band you should experience live the next chance you get.
For more on A R I Z O N A: