Here Are the 13 Philly Bands Playing at SXSW 2015
The sound of Philadelphia will be kicking up some dust deep in the heart of Texas during Austin’s South by Southwest (SXSW) festival, taking place March 13th through March 22nd.
Thirteen bands and artists from the Philly area will be featured at SXSW during the last six days of the event. Below, the scoop on the musical performers who are slated to rep the 215. We also put together a Spotify playlist, which you can follow here.
Low Cut Connie
Established in 2010, this indie rock-and-roll group features the piano prowess of Adam Weiner and Dan Finnemore, who rip it on drums and bass. The quartet, which is rounded out by Will Donnelly and James Everhart, is playing SXSW for the second time, following their debut at the event last year. The band scored rave reviews with their first two albums, Get Out the Lotion (2010) and Call Me Sylvia (2012), and will be releasing their third album, Hi Honey, April 21.
Self Defense Family
This post-punk, post-hardcore clan has cut four albums and numerous vinyl releases since the their inception in 2003. The outfit, which previously went by the name End of a Year, has been particularly prodigious as of late, having released 12 singles, EPs, and splits in the last two years alone.
Since forming in 2012, Cheerleader is making noise in the music circles, reaching crowds far and wide both here in the U.S. and Europe with their indie-pop sound. The five-member group, recently releasing their debut album Sunshine of Our Youth, is rallying crowds on an ambitious tour and will be returning to SXSW for their second appearance.
This Philly-based duo stormed to success after a chance meeting with recording exec Seymour Stein, president of Sire Records, during a street show at the 2012 SXSW. Less than three years later, The Cold Fronts have built a loyal nationwide following and are on their way to releasing their debut album this spring—a fairytale adventure that has whisked the indie rock twosome to incredible heights since their days playing for crowds at West Philly’s Rathaus.
Aaron Livingston collaborated with The Roots and RJD2 before breaking out on his own as Son Little. His music blends reggae, hip-hop, soul, and blues and is brought to life with drums, guitar, samples, and Livingston’s powerful voice and evocative lyrics.
This bright-eyed 21-year-old guitarist has become one of the hottest sensations on the local indie-rock scene. Alex Giannascoli, or Alex G as he is now widely known, loves writing his own music. Surely many of the songs he’ll play at SXSW will come from his latest album, DSU (Dream State University), which was released last August.
Time for Three
Ever since Zach De Pue, Nick Kendall, and Ranaan Meyer met at Philly’s own Curtis Institute of Music, the road to success has taken the two violinists and bassist to soaring heights, not to mention Carnegie Hall. While the three locals may be classically trained, they play it all, including bluegrass, rock, and hip-hop.
This Philadelphia punk-rock group may be one of the latest sensations, but their sound hearkens back to the hard-rocking sounds that emerged in the 1970s. Even the band’s logo looks like something from hard rock’s yesteryear. They may embrace Lynard Skynard and Kiss-tinged licks but, make no mistake, they keep it fresh.
OCD: Moosh & Twist
DeQuincy “Moosh” Coleman McRae and Oliver “Twist” Feighan trace their rapping roots to seventh grade at The Philadelphia School. Since their days together there, the duo has drawn large crowds at venues ranging from skate parks to TLA. Drawing on influences like Kanye West, Drake, and Outkast, OCD has released hits like “City Kids” and “Possibilities.”
The popular indie-rock band from Lititz has enjoyed a cult following ever since splashing onto the scene in 2009. Their appearance at SXSW comes just a few weeks after their gig on NBC’s Late Night with Seth Meyers and the release of their most recent album, A Flourish and a Spoil.
Following the release of a self-titled solo EP he wrote and recorded in his bedroom three years ago, Andy States grew CRUISR into a four-man indie-pop band that’s toured the nation. Playing the Made in America festival headlined by the likes of Kanye West and Kings of Leon, CRUISR is riding to new heights and rising exposure.
Samantha Gongol and Jeremy Lloyd are steaming up the stage as Marian Hill, an electronic duo drawing on decidedly blues and jazz influences. The electro beats are polished with some smooth saxophone seduction, creating a unique sound that is drawing fans to their feet from Philadelphia to San Francisco.
Emanuel Lee Lambert, Jr., marries the seemingly unlikely couple of rap and Christian music. Lambert, who goes by the stage name Da’ T.R.U.T.H., studied at the Philadelphia Biblical Institute and Institute of Jewish Studies and has even won accolades such as the Stellar Award for Rap/Hip-Hop Gospel CD of the Year with his 2005 record, The Faith. His latest album, 2014’s Heartbeat, climbed to No. 2 on the Gospel charts.
Heading to the Lone Star State to catch your favorite local artists? Be sure to check out the SXSW site for more details on ticket prices, registration, and other info. Hit the SXSW schedule for more the lowdown on who’s appearing and when.