TGTF Guide to SXSW 2017: Los Angeles artists showcasing at this year’s SXSW

By on Monday, 6th March 2017 at 3:00 pm
 

If you followed TGTF’s coverage of SXSW 2016, you might have noticed that we branched out a bit last year to include more American and international bands in both our previews and our live coverage of the music festival. To continue in that vein this year, we’re offering preview coverage of showcasing bands and artists from selected cities in America, starting with the City of Angels. Home to the glitz and glam of the Hollywood film industry, Los Angeles is also a major mecca for music industry types and a perpetual source of inspiration for musicians themselves.

As you can imagine, the list of SXSW showcasing artists from the Los Angeles area is quite lengthy, given the large number of musicians in the city and the city’s relative proximity to Austin. The Los Angeles contingent to SXSW 2017 comprises artists from across the span of categorized genres, including pop, rock, electronic, Americana, hip-hop, metal and reggae. This part of our guide will, by necessity, be only a very brief overview of some of the L.A.-based bands and artists who have grabbed our attention in the lead-up to SXSW.

Allison Pierce internal

Starting with the Americana category, one familiar name immediately caught my eye, that of Allison Pierce. Formerly part of sister duo The Pierces, Allison Pierce has recently ventured out on her own to record a solo album, due for release on the 5th of May this year. Very little information about the album was available at press time, except for the title, ‘Year of the Rabbit’. Following SXSW, Pierce is scheduled to go on tour with The Wind and the Wave, which might give some indication of her intended sound.

The avant/experimental category is represented by multi-disciplinary artist SORNE, who is an accomplished actor, visual artist and filmmaker aside from his musical oeuvre. Though his SXSW bio lists Los Angeles as his current base, his official Web site alludes to some history with the city of Austin as well. You watch his performance video of ‘House of Stone (Rubble Women)’ just below.

[youtube]https://youtu.be/fFRhi3Lzzs4[/youtube]

Newport Beach DJ Shaded brings his production talents to Austin on the heels of his November EP release ‘Yoyo’ and with a new EP already in the works for 2017. On the electronic side, South New Jersey native electrosoul artist Mndsgn has released two full albums since relocating to the surf and sunshine of Southern California. His latest, 2016’s ‘Body Wash’, features a mix of chill synths and kaleidoscopic funk in ‘Cosmic Perspective’.

[youtube]https://youtu.be/BGgaZ66-hPA[/youtube]

Jazz drummer Karriem Riggins has an extensive background in session work, as well as production for artists like Common, Talib Kweli and The Roots. His 2012 solo debut ‘Alone Together’ features a mind-boggling 34 tracks, which cross-reference and intertwine hip-hop and jazz rhythms. On the edgier side of the Hip-Hop/Rap category, West Coast rapper G Perico is riding high on the acclaim of his 2016 LP ‘Shit Don’t Stop’. (Take a listen to the title track right here —warning, explicit lyrics.)

Surprisingly (or maybe not, for those more in-the-know about the genre) the metal category features two L.A. bands fronted by female lead singers. Writer and social activist Otep Shemaya describes her band Otep as “artcore” and “heavy mental”; their current album ‘Generation Doom’ is out now. The World Over, led by Tiaday Ball, are scheduled to tour with Otep in mid-March around their stop in Austin for SXSW.

[youtube]https://youtu.be/rTx_aSn-ckw[/youtube]

The pop genre is also heavy on female artists this year, starting with the quirky, edgy alt-pop of BeLL. She’s got a haunting cover of REM’s ‘Losing My Religion’ posted on her Soundcloud, along with her own current single ‘Bang Bang’. On the more mainstream side of things, Bridgit Mendler’s new single ‘Temperamental Love’ has a chill r&b vibe, while non-female band Frenship takes a radio-friendly anthem-pop tack with ‘1000 Nights’.

[youtube]https://youtu.be/2HnaFtTV1wA[/youtube]

Rock is the most heavily populated category among Los Angeles artists, and the variety of rock artists runs the subgenre gamut from Grunge (Deap Vally) to New Wave (Kolars) to Soul (Chicano Batman). Editor Mary has already introduced us to up-and-coming sibling act The Fontaines. Other notable mentions in the category go to Mondo Cozmo (pictured at top), who’s already been all over SiriusXM radio here in the States, Weezer guitarist Brian Bell’s side project The Relationship, and irrepressible garage rockers Cherry Glazerr. (Their video for ‘Nuclear Bomb’ might be considered NSFW.)

[youtube]https://youtu.be/l3Pnr3S10yA[/youtube]

The singer/songwriter genre, predictably, has a few interesting vagabond stories among its ranks. San Francisco native Mark Eitzel has relocated to Los Angeles for the release of his tenth solo album ‘Hey Mr Ferryman’, which was recorded in London with former Suede guitarist Bernard Butler. Relative newcomer Corey Harper transplanted himself from Portland to Venice, CA, where his raw, soulful sound seems to have bloomed in the ‘California Sun’ (see below). And folk duo Jim and Sam have resolved to become proper troubadours, playing a live show every day for a year on what they call their ‘Anywhere Everyday’ tour.

[youtube]https://youtu.be/4upL8hZSvZg[/youtube]

All roads will lead from Los Angeles to Austin in only a week’s time. Stay tuned to TGTF for more coverage of L.A. artists live from SXSW 2017. Please note: all information we bring you about SXSW 2017 is to the best of our knowledge when it posts and artists and bands scheduled to appear may be subject to change. To learn when your favourite artist is playing in Austin, we recommend you first consult the official SXSW schedule, then stop by the artist’s Facebook and official Web site for details of any non-official SXSW appearances.

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There Goes The Fear is where we tell you about the latest music, gigs, and tours we love and think you should too.

We love music that has its heart on its sleeve, tells a story, swims around our head all day or makes us dance like no-one's watching.

TGTF is edited by Mary Chang, who is based in Washington, DC. She is joined by writers in England, America and Ireland. It began as a UK music blog by Phil Singer in 2005.

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