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

 
By on Thursday, 9th March 2017 at 11:00 am
 

In past years, we have gone through peaks and troughs with respect to the number of Scottish acts who come out to showcase at SXSW. I’m pleased to announce that as of the time of this posting, 13 acts are scheduled to appear at SXSW 2017, the largest number in recent memory. The summaries of acts below were written by Steven Loftin, except where noted. 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.

Be Charlotte – pop / Dundee
What pop music sounds like when it comes from Dundee: that’s Be Charlotte. You find yourself drawn in by the obviously melodic, yet also cacophonous music, and you stay for the vocals that cut through and have an incredibly strong Scottish accent that for reason enthralls you. Or maybe that’s just me.

[youtube]https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IoCMTVDW04k[/youtube]

Catholic Action – pop / Glasgow
Catchy indie pop that has an alluring rawness, as if you’re listening to a band in a bedroom rather than a reasonably established DIY band. Their track ‘Rita Ora’ – yep, an ode to Rita Ora – is catchy, swift and poppy. What more could you want?

[youtube]https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=86kSAB23nDY[/youtube]

C. Macleod – singer/songwriter / Stornoway
If I had to fathom a guess, someone with name C. Macleod isn’t looking to make a big splash. Instead, this Stornoway native is all about careful, thoughtful songcraft. A driving, Springsteen-esque feel pervades his debut single ‘Dream’, feeling less loner and more expansive than you’d expect from a native of the Isle of Lewis. FFO: Bruce Springsteen, The National, The War on Drugs (Mary Chang)

[youtube]https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=t2c7UiN8-5E[/youtube]

Elle Exxe – pop / London via Edinburgh
Listed as ‘dirty pop’, that’s definitely the best way to describe Elle Exxe (pictured at top). There’s a distinct edge to her music that doesn’t fall in line with your ‘paint-by-numbers’ pop formula. An attitude that is where Charli XCX should’ve been heading toward, she’ll be a household name by 2018. We called it first. Check out Rebecca’s review of Elle’s debut album ‘Love Fuelled Hate’ from last autumn through here.

[youtube]https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Dd9si_HbBtI[/youtube]

Happy Meals – synthpop / Glasgow
Lewis Cook and Suzanne Rodden comprise Happy Meals, a disco-leaning synthpop band based in Glasgow. However, it’s important to note that this isn’t disco in the style of Donna Summer or other tunes spun at Studio 54. Their minimalist yet space age-y style of dance, accompanied by Rodden’s vocals sometimes in English, sometimes French, adds to the eclectism. I will bet you that you will hear no-one else like Happy Meals in Austin in March. (Mary Chang)

[youtube]https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=T7tHtbaQN7s[/youtube]

PAWS – punk / Glasgow
Some more of that home bred punk rock. PAWS are another band who are going from strength to strength with a raw, melodic sound. SXSW should see them take Texas by storm, especially after the release of their third full length last year.

Pinact – punk / Glasgow
Back with even more punk for SXSW, Pinact are on the louder and harsher side of the spectrum. Pleasing but still with an edge that means your parents won’t like it, they’re another Scottish band who take the angst that is apparently rife there and execute it like all your favourites do.

[youtube]https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aSfC_9HrhxQ[/youtube]

The Pooches – pop / Glasgow
Glasgow’s Pooches create some beautiful guitar pop that never fails to leave you satisfied. Releasing their self-titled debut late last year, the band aren’t afraid of sticking out of the crowd with their wry yet upbeat pop sound.

Sam Gellaitry – electronic / Stirling
Already signed to XL Records, a powerhouse of a label in the indie world, Sam Gellaitry knows his way around a beat or two. He takes that urban London feeling, which you may or may not be familiar with, and crafts it into easy listening electronic tracks.

[youtube]https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=o7W4t0ClwDg[/youtube]

Spinning Coin – psych rock / Glasgow
You guessed it, another Glaswegian band. They do it well up in Scotland, birthing bands that craft sounds that somehow give none of the fucks while simultaneously giving them all. Keeping it DIY, they released their debut 7″ last year and have no intentions of stopping there. Not to mention their apparently visceral live show, what’s not to love?

[youtube]https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wLanmgLzEno[/youtube]

The Spook School – pop / Edinburgh
The kind of band to not take themselves too seriously while ensuring they keep a solid message in their tunes (see: ‘Burn Masculinity’). With a sound that’s a mixture between indie and DIY punk, there’s no bells and whistles, which completely suits their styling down to the ground. [Having appeared at SXSW last year, we sincerely hope this time they bring suncream. -Ed.]

[youtube]https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uGGj5_7dx0o[/youtube]

The Van T’s – surf rock / Glasgow
Cleverly made up of two twins, Charlotte and Hannah Van Thompson, along with Joanne Forbes and Shaun Hood, The Van T’s are a part of Glasgow’s burgeoning and bustling rock scene. Surf pop/rock ‘n’ roll might not be game changing but it sure is fun. [Sadly, we’ve received word that The Van T’s will not be showcasing in Austin this year. – Ed.]

[youtube]https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wAe7wJK_SXQ[/youtube]

 

TGTF Guide to SXSW 2017: Feminism at this year’s festival’s forefront

 
By on Wednesday, 8th March 2017 at 3:00 pm
 

Header photo: SXSW 2017 featured conference speaker Nadya Tolokonnikova

Those of you who are regular readers of TGTF, or who faithfully follow our SXSW music festival coverage, will have read our SXSW 2016 article on feminism ahead of last year’s event. Event organisers took a decidedly feminist stance in their planning last year, scheduling both a wide range of feminist conference speakers and an impressive list of female artists on the music showcases. This year’s overview of feminism at SXSW will focus on the music conference, which once again offers an array of feminist-oriented events, including full-length panel discussions, professional meet-ups, and interactive sessions with notable female artists.

Non-profit education and service organisation Women in Music will host a ‘Women in Music Meet Up’ session on Wednesday the 15th of March, providing a place and time to gather people “from across all areas of the music industry who support empowerment, equality, and opportunities for women in music”. The meet up will also offer “an opportunity to learn more about the non-profit organization Women in Music and its community”. Later in the week, on Saturday the 18th of March, members of Women in Music will participate in a full panel session titled ‘Passport to Women in Music: A Global Review’ designed to “explore the similarities and differences in the challenges women face around the world and analyze the ways that men and women are collaborating together to solve these challenges”.

Professional topics within the music industry will be addressed in panel discussions such as ‘A League of Their Own: Success as a Female Entrepreneur’ on the 16th of March, where four female speakers from different specialties within the music industry will talk about “where they are today and what hurdles they faced” to get there. On a more specific subject, another quartet of panelists will tackle issues surrounding “one of the most competitive roles in music” with ‘Women in A&R: Navigating the Stereotypes’ on Friday the 17th of March.

From a performance-related perspective, ‘Safe Space to Rock: Combating Harassment in Music’ on the 17th of March, will comprise a panel of five speakers, including Speedy Ortiz frontwoman Sadie Dupuis, who has appeared at SXSW previously as a showcasing artist and a featured conference speaker, and members of  queer-punk band PWR BTTM, who are scheduled to showcase at this year’s music festival. The session proposes to confront “problems of harassment in the music scene and propose solutions to ensure the music community is a safe, accessible space for people of all genders and sexual orientations”.

Cindy Wilson press photo

(photo credit: Jeremy Ayers and Keith Bennett)

More in-depth artist perspectives on feminism will be provided by a pair of single-speaker sessions with notable female artists. On the 16th of March, a session with Russian conceptual artist and political activist Nadya Tolokonnikova of Pussy Riot will focus on the interrelation of art and activism in her career. The following day, a conversation with singer/songwriter Cindy Wilson (pictured above) of New Wave band The B-52s, will focus on the new musical direction she has taken with recent solo album ‘Change’.

Finally, the music fan viewpoint will be represented in a meta-analytical conference session titled ‘What Young Women Want From Music Festivals’ on the 16th of March. Operating on the premise that “thanks to increased buying power and interest, . . .18-24-year-old women are among the most formative forces behind the evolving music festival landscape”, this four-member panel discussion centers on the implications of growing participation from this demographic group for event producers, festival sponsors and performing artists.

As always, the schedule of events at SXSW 2017 is subject to change. For the most up-to-date information about the entire festival, including the music conference and the lineup of showcasing artists, you can consult the official schedule here. TGTF’s ongoing preview coverage of SXSW 2017 is collected here.

 

TGTF Guide to SXSW 2017: Northern Irish artists showcasing at this year’s SXSW

 
By on Wednesday, 8th March 2017 at 11:00 am
 

The Emerald Isle may be a relatively small island, but there is no denying it is bursting with talent from top to bottom. Yesterday, we introduced you to the seven acts from below that pesky dotted line in the Republic of Ireland proper who will appear at SXSW 2017. Today, our focus is on the seven artists from Eire who carry British passports. The summaries below were written by the newest member of our team and our Northern Irish correspondent based in (London)Derry, Adam McCourt, except where noted. 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.

Ciaran Lavery – singer/songwriter / Aghagallon
Ciaran Lavery is an Irish singer/songwriter from the small town of Aghagallon in County Antrim. Lavery soared to success after his singles ‘Left for America’ and ‘Shame’ racked up over 29 million plays on Spotify. With the release of his latest live album ‘Live at the Mac’ back in December (read my review here), Lavery has built quite an eclectic discography including 2 studio albums ‘Not Nearly Dark’ (2013) and ‘Let Bad In’ (2016), preceded by the album ‘Sea Legs’ in collaboration with fellow Northern Irish showcaser Ryan Vail (2016) and his debut EP, ‘Koesher’ (2014). FFO: Bob Dylan, Woody Guthrie, Villagers

Read TGTF’s past coverage on Ciaran Lavery through here.

[youtube]https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UhZRAkWxUF8[/youtube]

Jealous of the Birds – folk/rock / Portadown
Jealous of the Birds is the musical moniker of Naomi Hamilton. Hailing from the wet and windy coastal town of Portadown, Jealous of the Birds channels her surroundings with sweet and chirpy songs. Sticking to the lo-fi indie sound, Hamilton’s debut EP ‘Capricorn’ released in March 2015 gathered much attention from BBC Radio 1’s Huw Stephens and one of Ireland’s longest and most accredited radio stations Across The Line. Her debut album ‘Parma Violets’ was released in May 2016 and just recently, she collaborated with fellow SXSW attendee Ryan Vail on a track entitled ‘Love is a Crow’. FFO: PORTS, Foy Vance, Girls Names

Read TGTF’s past coverage on Jealous of the Birds through here.

[youtube]https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8rED0XiO93c[/youtube]

New Portals – electronic/pop / Belfast
New Portals (pictured at top) are an electronic/pop duo from Belfast. Husband and wife Michael and Ruth Aicken began as the key members of an alt-folk group called The Jepettos before turning their attention to synth-laden pop tracks, while still keeping the angelic tonal quality of Ruth’s vocals. Since re-establishing as New Portals, the couple have made their mark by releasing a bombardment of seven singles (with five music videos) over their short career of a year. You can check out our holiday feature late last year for their seasonally appropriate single ‘Winter Skin’ through here. FFO: Imagine Dragons, Banks, EMBRZ

[youtube]https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3ghog_fnSKI[/youtube]

Protex – punk / Belfast
Punk rockers Protex have been in existence as a band longer than many of their fellow Northern Irish acts have been alive. Still, their staying power in the industry is testament to the continued interest – a need – for guitar music that provides a kick in the arse. FFO: Sex Pistols, New York Dolls (Mary Chang)

[youtube]https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Vj2I-Z0B-oQ[/youtube]

Robocobra Quartet – experimental / Belfast
Probably one of the more interesting Irish acts to head to SXSW is Robocobra Quartet. Formed whilst studying Music Technology at Queens University, Belfast, the band take influence from jazz, hardcore punk and classical music. Their debut album ‘Music for All Occasions’ was released in November lof ast year, and it’s packed with spoken word vocals, squealing saxophone and unexpected improvisation. The band is under the direction of drummer and vocalist Chris Ryan and with Tom Tabori (soprano saxophone), Thibault Barilon (tenor sax, alto saxophone, flute) and as of recently, Ryan Burrowes who replaced Nathan Rogers on bass. FFO: Melt Yourself Down, At The Drive-In, Fugazi

[youtube]https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=N-SfI3WC0iA[/youtube]

Ryan Vail – electronic / Derry
Ryan Vail is a solo electronic composer from Derry. He has been writing, composing and releasing music since 2012, with his debut album ‘For Every Silence’ being released last April. Vail is no stranger to experimentation and genre crossing. He’s known for bringing a whole new sonic picture to the world of electronic/dance music by incorporating elements of folk and classical music with unique recording and composition methods. See Jealous of the Birds’ profile above to read more about their recent single collaboration. FFO: Chet Faker, Ciaran Lavery (see above), Burial, James Blake

[youtube]https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=r_7Xyi9LAq4[/youtube]

Silences – singer/songwriter / alternative / Armagh
Silences began as a musical outlet for singer/songwriter Conchúr White back in 2013. With the addition of White’s cousin Breandán White, and close friends Christopher Harbinson, Michael Keyes and Jonathan Downing, Silences have released 3 critically acclaimed EPs: ‘Nevernames’ (March 2014), ‘Sister Snow’ (October 2014), and ‘Luna’ (April 2016). The Armagh-based five-piece have received considerable support from the likes of Huw Stephens, Annie Mac and Phil Taggart of BBC Radio 1 and Gary Lightbody of Snow Patrol and have appeared at top festivals such as Latitude, The Great Escape and Electric Picnic. FFO: Bon Iver, Jeff Buckley, Death Cab for Cutie, alt-J

Read TGTF’s past coverage on Silences through here.

[youtube]https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4mgCDoBn3Pg[/youtube]

 

TGTF Guide to SXSW 2017: this year’s Music keynotes and recommended speakers

 
By on Tuesday, 7th March 2017 at 3:00 pm
 

Every year, SXSW has the good fortune to be able to draw incredible speakers involved in tech, film, and of course what we’re interested in, music. This year is no exception. So I’ll be highlighting who I consider the can’t miss recommended speakers of the Music stream of SXSW 2017.

Darryl “DMC” McDaniels (Thursday 17 March, 12:30 PM) – Utter his name and those beats from Run DMC’s version of ‘Walk This Way’ come into your head, don’t they? The thing that fascinates me about people like McDaniels is that you know they could retire on the royalties from songs and projects from so long ago. So why do they keep at it? It’s the passion. McDaniels has another passion besides music, comic books, which he parlayed into a comic book company back in 2014. He’s also a published writer two times over. Certainly a man with a lot to say and considering the current political climate, I am sure he has an opinion on what is going in our country today. Darryl “DMC” McDaniels is a legendary music icon who first impacted the world over 30 years ago. From the first rap group to grace the cover of Rolling Stone to the first to appear on MTV, Grammy nominated Run-DMC changed music, culture, fashion, language and made American history. It would be hard to overstate his influence on popular culture.”

Krist Novoselic (Tuesday 14 March, 3:30 PM) – After Kurt Cobain’s untimely death, history could have been written such that the surviving two members of Nirvana never could overcome the late Cobain’s shadow. We all know what Dave Grohl went on to, but did you know that bassist Krist Novoselic went on to making politics a high priority in his life? From SXSW: “A member of the groundbreaking rock band Nirvana, Krist Novoselic and his bandmates changed the course of music history with their much-acclaimed album Nevermind. Novoselic went on to become one of rock’s most politically-minded musicians and an influential part of the Northwest political scene. He serves as Board chair for FairVote, a non-profit that seeks to make democracy fair.”

Mick Fleetwood (Wednesday 15 March, 5 PM) – His surname is half of the name of one of the greatest rock bands to have come out of the Seventies, so Mick Fleetwood’s place in the history of rock ‘n’ roll is assured. However, music is not the only thing Fleetwood has dabbled in. He owns a highly successful restaurant and bar in his current locale of Maui, Hawaii, and will be trying his hand at writing a chronicle on the band that made him famous. “Mick Fleetwood is a self-taught drummer and a founding member of one of the most successful bands of the last fifty years, Fleetwood Mac. Formed in 1967, their first album Peter Green’s Fleetwood Mac came in at no.4 in the UK charts and brought the band overnight success. They went on to release the no.1 hit “Albatross” and a series of critically acclaimed albums, with further hit singles including “Black Magic Woman” and “Need Your Love So Bad.”

Nile Rodgers (Keynote / Wednesday 15 March at 11 AM / pictured at top) – Suffice to say, there are few people who have as many credits to their name, are as well-respected and are still in demand for collaboration and for so many decades as Nile Rodgers. While he’s probably best known as the co-founder and guitarist of disco trailblazers Chic, he’s responsible for countless hits that benefitted from his golden production touch. For myself, my life would never have been the same if he hadn’t been drafted in as a co-producer of Duran Duran’s ‘Notorious’ album. Rodgers is the epitome of cool and a living legend. As much as I’d like to be there for his keynote, to hear the stories he has to share from his many years in the business, something tells me it’s going to be rammed. From SXSW: “Among music legends, Nile Rodgers is truly exceptional. He amplifies his legacy as a multiple Grammy Award-winning composer, producer, arranger, and guitarist. As a cultural icon and music innovator with more than 200 production credits to his name, Nile Rodgers transcends all styles of music across every generation.”

Rachael Ray (Friday 17 March, 12:30 PM) – Her name probably sounds funny on a music speakers list like this, but having watched her cooking shows over the years, sister’s got a good taste in music and loves it. The now national network personality has hosted her own – and mind you, free – curated day of bands in Austin for the last 9 years of SXSW and as an unusual entry among the other Music Influencers, I’d venture to say this could be the most interesting Music Influencers session of them all. From SXSW: “Television host, bestselling author and Austin enthusiast, Rachael Ray, has hosted two annual Feedback food and music events in Austin during SXSW for the last nine years which have played host to the likes of The Districts, J. Roddy Walston & The Business, Shovels & Rope, JEFF The Brotherhood, Blondie, Raekwon and over 150 other acts.”

Zane Lowe (Keynote / Thursday 16 March at 11 AM) – I was never a fan of Zane’s shouty delivery style when he was still the primetime evening presenter on BBC Radio 1 a few years ago. However you feel about him and the music he chooses to tip, it’s undeniable that he is well-respected in the global music community, his finger now on the pulse of things well beyond merely Britain as Creative Director of Beats 1. From SXSW: “Zane’s wealth of music knowledge and creative vision bring personality back to the modern age of music discovery through the human experience. With free-form, cutting-edge programming built purely on taste and passion, Lowe creates a united way for the world to talk about music in a free space. The objective is clear: to break records, to find new music, and to put exciting new artists in front of an audience that wants to hear it.”

As always, the schedule of events at SXSW 2017 is subject to change. For the most up-to-date information about the entire festival, including the music conference and the lineup of showcasing artists, you can consult the official schedule here. TGTF’s ongoing preview coverage of SXSW 2017 is collected here.

 

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

 
By on Tuesday, 7th March 2017 at 11:00 am
 

The Emerald Isle always sends a strong contingent of acts out to SXSW, and this year for SXSW 2017 is no exception. Having covered Hard Working Class Heroes myself for the first time last October and my new initiative in 2016 to include Ireland as part of TGTF’s official remit make supporting the Irish and Northern Irish artists coming out to Austin all that much sweeter in 2017. In this post, we introduce you to seven acts from different corners of Ireland proper. The summaries of acts below were written by the newest member of our team and our Northern Irish correspondent Adam McCourt. 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.

The Academic – rock / Mullingar
The Academic – Craig Fitzgerald (vocals/guitar), brothers Matt (guitar) and Stephen (bass) Murtagh and Dean Gavin (drums) are an indie pop four-piece from Mullingar. Since their performance of their debut single ‘Different’ on one of Ireland’s most watched television shows, ‘The Late Late Show’ they have done nothing but soared to success. They signed a publishing deal with Global publishing in that same year and since have appeared on the bills of top festivals and supported huge names Kodaline, The Strypes, Little Green Cars and opening for The Pixies at The Marquee. Their debut EP ‘Loose Friends’ was released in October 2015. We reviewed their single ‘Mixtape 2003’ and featured its promo video last year, so TGTF are no strangers to these young talents. FFO: Kings of Leon, The Metric System, Stereophonics

[youtube]https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nu8M3Cw6fuU[/youtube]

A.S Fanning – singer/songwriter / Berlin via Dublin
A.S Fanning is a musician, singer, songwriter and producer who was previously the frontman for the underrated Dublin band The Last Tycoons. Since their end, Fanning has relocated to Berlin and began writing music alone. So far, he’s only released one single, ‘Carmelita’ so far; however, keep your eyes and ears peeled for his debut album funded by Kickstarter crowdfunding, ‘Second Life’, expected to drop this March. FFO: The Veils, Editors, Tom Waits

[youtube]https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=T4ZkO9KaRv8[/youtube]

Birds of Olympus – rock / Wicklow
Spud Murphy (vocals), Donal Colohan (guitar), Darin Joye (guitar), Rory Clarke (bass) and Derek Byrne (drums) make up the Wicklow based self-proclaimed neo-psychedelic band Birds of Olympus. Keeping in line with their rather cryptic and metaphorical online bio, the birds hatched from their eggs in late 2015, and since have been testing the waters with their fresh blend of pop. They’ve released three singles – ‘Vine of the Soul’, ‘Cinder to the Sun’ and ‘Lights Out’ – and have a debut EP on the way. FFO: Modest Mouse, Villagers, Tame Impala

Cloud Castle Lake – electronic / Dublin
Dublin-based electronic trio Cloud Castle Lake have no fear when it comes to experimenting with sounds. Blending gloomy r&b chord progressions with Aphex Twin-esque acid techno drum grooves topped with an angelic falsetto voice, Brendan Jenkinson, Rory O’Connor and Daniel McAuley have perfected the art of cross-genre music. They released their debut EP ‘Dandelion’ in September 2014 and since then have only put out one single, ‘Glacier’. We’re looking forward to seeing what they unveil in Austin. FFO: Radiohead, Aphex Twin, Wild Beasts, Capua Collective

[youtube]https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=52jv-RxWjJA[/youtube]

EMBRZ – electronic / Dublin
EMBRZ is the brainchild of Dublin-born musician Jack Casey who started out as a guitar player in a band as a teenager. It’s said that an early deadmau5 track turned him on to electronic music. Since this discovery, EMBRZ has contributed massively to the vast world of EDM-influenced music with a rich blend of emotive dance music and downtempo beats. His remixes of The 1975’s track ‘Settle Down’ and Ellie Goulding’s ‘How Long Will I Love You?’ gained over 1 million plays when released and since then have almost tripled. A flurry of singles have been released in the last 2 years: ‘Silent’, ‘Lights’, ‘Home’ and ‘Breathe’. FFO: The 1975, Kygo, Bantum

Loah – soul / Dublin
The music created by Sallay Matu Garnett, aka Loah (pictured at top at an Other Voices show last year), comes as no surprise considering her background. Born in Kenya, but raised between Dublin, Sierra Leone and Maynooth, she now works as a part-time pharmacist in Dublin and writes stellar African infused soul/fusion music. Her rich blend of her African roots is what sets her apart from any other fusion artists, thus pioneering a genre Loah calls “ArtSoul”. Loah recently collaborated with Irish DJ and Bantum on single ‘Take It’ from his 2017 RTE Choice Music Prize Irish Album of the Year Award-nominated debut ‘Move’. FFO: Lianne La Havas, Nina Simone, Childish Gambino, Patti Smith

[youtube]https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0HWK2N-uLK0[/youtube]

Picture This – pop/rock / Dublin
When Ryan Hennessy (vocals/guitar) and Jimmy Rainsford (drums) began writing music in 2015, neither of them anticipated that they would sell out 8 dates in total at Dublin’s Olympia Theatre, making Picture This the first band to do this since R.E.M in 2007. Picture This’ success started in 2015 when Hennessey posted a video to Facebook of himself singing ‘Take My Hand’, culminating over 1.2 million views online. They booked a debut show in Dublin’s Grand Social venue, which sold out in less than 30 minutes. The gig moved to The Academy, which also sold out making them the first band to sell the venue out on their first gig. Their self-titled debut EP was released last summer, and we imagine a debut LP won’t be far behind. FFO: The Coronas, Kodaline, Ed Sheeran, Stereophonics

[youtube]https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=T72qlb4SVeg[/youtube]

 

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.

 
 
 

About Us

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.

All MP3s are posted with the permission of the artists or their representatives and are for sampling only. Like the music? Buy it.

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