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10 Artists Making a Splash at SXSW 2017

From Brooklyn MCs to powerpop, Austin festival is sure to have plenty of unforgettable performances

10 Artists Making a Splash at SXSW 2017

Let's Eat Grandma (left) and Tkay Maidza will both be musicians to catch at 2017 SXSW.

Andrew O'Toole, Francesca Allen

South by Southwest’s maze of official showcases, day parties and breakfast tacos can get a little overwhelming for even the most seasoned festival-goer. Here, 10 acts primed to break out of the queso-covered haze. 

Kweku Collins

Bryan Allen Lamb

Kweku Collins

Hailing from just north of Chicago, this MC/producer established himself as a major player in the Windy City’s hip-hop scene as a teen, signing to the tastemaking label Closed Sessions and releasing his debut EP just after graduating high school. His latest single “International Business Trip” pairs his fast-talking flow with spaced-out beats, while his dreamy cover of Yeah Yeah Yeahs’ longing “Maps” (a song that he’s “been in love” with since his middle-school days) shows off his stylistic breadth. 

Charly Bliss

Shervin Lainez

Charly Bliss

These New York powerpoppers have been wowing audiences for a few years now, with zippy, brutally honest tracks like the gimlet-eyed “Love Me” and the street-harasser rebuke “Turd” bringing to mind glitter-grunge rockers like that dog. and Veruca Salt. They’ll be playing SXSW in advance of their debut full-length, Guppy, which comes out in April.  

Big Thief

Shervin Lainez

Big Thief

On Masterpiece, their 2016 debut, this Brooklyn-based dream-folk album combined shoegaze’s reverbed-out guitars with the plaintive vocals and detailed lyrics of lead singer and songwriter Adrianne Lenker – a heady mix of easygoing riffs and gently wrenching singing. This summer they’ll be performing a few shows with Conor Oberst and appearing at a number of festivals, including the Portland-adjacent festival Pickathon and Rhode Island’s Newport Folk Festival. 

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