WUOG is heading Austin for the SXSW Music Festival! Here are just a few of the 2000 artists that we’re most looking forward to in Austin.
Nnamdi Ogbannaya is no rookie to the music industry. Although his first pull of national attention for his solo project was 2017’s DROOL, Ogbannaya has been a respected force in the Chicago music scene for years. DROOL is Ogbannaya’s most developed effort so far, uniquely fusing jazz, hip hop, math rock, and punk. With so much going on, I can’t wait to see how it all unravels live.
As WUOG music staffer in 2015, I reviewed Look Vibrant’s EP Only Qualms and fell in love with the group’s chaotic and wonky art rock and I’ve been closely following them since. The tempo shifts, dense sonic layers, and unstable falsetto make all the music I’ve heard from them so far captivating, and I can’t stop but compare the spark in there sound to that of Palm’s. With their first album slated to release in early April, Look Vibrant is on my list of bands to catch with the hope that I’ll get a sneak peak of new material.
Shortly after her record Yes and No came out this February, I remember recommending Anna McClellan as a singer with a voice that I didn’t necessarily like, but in a “good way.” McClellan’s voice is quavering, unconventional, but also emotional, honest, and humorous. The primarily piano-backed record is weird to say the least, often reminding me of western pageantry, but in a compelling, and almost addicting way. To say the least, I’m looking forward to the theatricality (and maybe even unpleasantness?) of McClellan, and I plan on enjoying every moment of it.
Sassy 009 arrived last fall with such a black and white force that it suddenly felt like all people were raving about from late 2017 were Yaeji’s EP2 and Sassy 009’s Do you mind EP. Very much hype, but in my eyes, well deserved. Their debut release brings an eerie blend of female vocalists, hypnotic dance music fit for a techno club, and even elements that sound like wind instruments. Much of the group’s background remains unknown to me, but I’m hoping to unveil the mystery at one of their sets this upcoming week and dance along to EP highlight “Are you leaving” in the process.
The Winspear-signed band Barrie may only have one song out to date, but they already have me hooked me. Their alluring single “Canyons” is a dream pop gem full of whispered vocals, romantic basslines, and cascading warmth. With such a promising debut, Barrie has me under their spell and hoping to catch one of their SXSW sets.
-Tori Benes, Music Director