SXSW 2015: FUV Picks
Team FUV is headed to SXSW and in addition to some of the outstanding new artists taking on the Public Radio Rocks Day Stage showcase on March 20, there are other musicians that we're eager to see over the next few days. Some of our choices will even perform live for FUV at Hotel San José later this week. Here is a handful of FUV's SXSW-focused staff picks for emerging artists who deserve a big break in Austin, like Tuxedo, Girl Band, Boxed In, Seinabo Sey, Ibeyi, Chastity Belt, Kate Tempest and more.
Rita Houston (FUV's Program Director, Host of The Whole Wide World):
Young Swedish artist who has hardly toured here in the States, but has high "star potential." One to watch.
A fine songwriter in the tradition of classics like Townes Van Zandt with well-crafted, melodic tunes.
The new Mayer Hawthorne project that brings fun and kitsch to retro funk. Bound to be a must see show.
Russ Borris (FUV's Music Director, Host of The Alternate Side):
This Seattle group won me over with the press photos for their new album, Time to Go Home. Google them, seriously. But the punkish attitude and strength of the new record make them a must-see band.
Niall Galvin is the man behind this UK outfit. There's a pop feel to his songs that mix strong melodies and catchy lyrics with a bit of a hip-hop flowing delivery.
Hailing from Dublin, this all male band makes some serious noise. Dark, haunting riffs fill their songs which feel both manic and maddening. Watch the band's video for "Lawman" below.
Laura Fedele (New Media Director, FUV's SXSW photographer)
There's a video stuck in my mind: Two women lie underwater, and each is pulled to the surface in turn to sing her part of the duet, then pushed back under. It's mesmerizing. That's Ibeyi (the word for for 'twin' in Yoruba), who are Lisa-Kaindé and Naomi Diaz. They proudly carry forth their Cuban heritage and Parisian surroundings, and with them sculpt a sound that's equal parts traditional sounds and ultra-modern beats and samples. They're 20, beautiful, and I expect to be struck dumb in their presence. Watch their video for "River" below.
Kara Manning (Digital Editor, Host of UKNY):
This fast-rising Belfast quartet has a clever knack for effusive, smart and catchy indie-pop. The title track from their very new EP, Running, is sleek and irresistibly sun-splashed. Little wonder that they've already supported bands as diverse as Wild Beasts, Bastille and London Grammar.
London producer Oli Bayston has the impressive CV of an ambitious young artist. He's worked with Lily Allen, The 2 Bears, The Bohicas, Steve Mason, Anita Blay, The Voyeurs and producer Dan Carey, when the latter was producing Lianne Le Havas. But it's as Boxed In that Bayston finds his most fully-realized voice. His eponymous debut album, released in January, is sultry and sophisticated, confidently seizing the dance floor via tracks like "Mystery" or "No Joke." But there's room for seduction too, as in the pulsing drift of "Sailing." One of the strongest debut albums of the year thus far.
Yes, there's been a lot of attention paid in Britain to this acclaimed south London poet, playwright, novelist and rapper. Tempest, who initially dreamed of being a hip-hop artist rather than a performance poet, received a Mercury Prize nomination last year for her riveting debut album, Everybody Down. But Tempest is way overdue for her Stateside break; her brusque, unflinching and finely-etched songs unspool like prickly and poignant urban fables.