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Up-And-Coming Artists You Can't Miss At SXSW 2015

Sarah French |
March 15, 2015 | 4:17 p.m. PDT


Talk In Tongues performing at USC's KXSC Fest. Instagram, @talk_in_tongues.
Talk In Tongues performing at USC's KXSC Fest. Instagram, @talk_in_tongues.
The music portion of the South by Southwest mega-festival kicks off this Tuesday and, as usual, anticipation is rapidly approaching fever pitch. SXSW (call it “South By” if you want to sound like a veteran festival-goer) has long been renowned as a haven for up-and-coming bands, and although the festival’s increased popularity in recent years has led to criticism that it’s being overrun by “mainstream” artists, it’s still a hotbed for emerging talent if you know where to look. Here are five lesser-known acts worth checking out this year (and for your convenience, here’s a Spotify playlist with all the linked songs). 

READ MORE: KXSC’s 7th Annual Music Festival Wows Concert Goers


Meg Mac 

Australian Meg Mac’s powerful voice and neo-soul sound invite comparisons to the likes of Adele and Sam Smith. Her track “Roll Up Your Sleeves” created a lot of buzz in the blogosphere, and it seems likely that she’s destined for great things. 

Show Times: Friday at Stubb’s, 10:10 p.m.; Saturday at Cedar Street Courtyard, 9:00 p.m.

Listen: “Roll Up Your Sleeves” 



The Districts

Not so long ago, The Districts was just a high school cover band in small-town Pennsylvania. Their youth is still reflected in their boisterous sound, but their excellent sophomore album leaves no question that they’re now a full-fledged rock band. Highly recommended for fans of Franz Ferdinand and Kings of Leon. 

Show times: Thursday at Parish, 11:00 p.m.; Friday at Stubb’s, 8:30 p.m.

Listen: “4th and Roebling”



Chastity Belt

All-female post-punk band Chastity Belt combines a wry sense of humor, the sonic influences of their home in the Pacific Northwest and just the right amount of riot grrrl to create something pretty amazing. If you like Sleater-Kinney, you’ll probably like Chastity Belt too. 

Show times: Wednesday at 720 Club Patio, 12:00 a.m.; Thursday at Hype Hotel, 9:00 p.m.

Listen: “Joke”



Talk In Tongues

L.A. psych-rockers Talk In Tongues put on a fantastic live show a few weeks ago at KXSC Fest and they’ll definitely be bringing it again during their SXSW shows. Their debut EP won’t be out until May, but based on what we’ve already heard of their impeccably produced Tame Impala-esque sound, get ready to hear a lot more about them in the near future. 

Show times: Wednesday at Red Eyed Fly, 12:15 a.m.; Wednesday at Cheer Up Charlie’s, 8:00 p.m.; Saturday at Central Presbyterian Church, 9:20 p.m.

Listen: “Still Don’t Seem To Care”




The giddy energy of Hinds’ delightful lo-fi surf rock is downright infectious. This all-girl group from Madrid has been taking Europe by storm the last few months, and hopefully they’ll be just as successful in the States. Definitely check them out if you’re a fan of Best Coast, who incidentally is also playing SXSW. 

Show times: Thursday at Hype Hotel, 10:00 p.m.; Friday at Lucille, 10:00 p.m.; Saturday at Latitude 30, 10:00 p.m.

Listen: “Bamboo”



Contact Contributor Sarah French here.



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