The SXSW Music and Media Conference is back for its 27th year and is in full swing as the film portion is well underway and the music portion starts today (and lasts until March 17)! The Daily Truffle will be on the ground in Austin covering the music highlights this week and we can hardly keep up with all the amazingness that is brewing!
Artists, celebs, industry execs and fans are descending upon Austin eager to see great shows, attend great parties and see what rumors will prove true! Sightings thus far include Ashton Kutcher, Usher, Fergie and Josh Dumel, Joseph Gordon-Levitt and the beautiful, Brooklyn Decker, who is no doubt happy to be in her home town. The city is abuzz with reports of surprise performances by Prince, Justin Timberlake, Jay-Z, Muse, Lupe Fiasco, Alicia Keys and Daft Punk who Colombia Records (Daft Punk’s new label) has curiously blasted images of across the city.
The anticipation was incited even further when Samsung couldn’t wait for the start of the music portion and kicked off their Samsung Galaxy Sound Stage Series a little early with a VIP party on Saturday night and a surprise performance by Band of Horses and The Roots. I mean can’t we even get a weekend to compile this insanity?
Any SXSW attendee can make the experience what they want it to be whether it’s seeing the most music possible, catching the most memorable performance, creating new connections or kicking back at a fab party. To help you navigate the neverending list of official and unofficial showcases and parties, the Daily Truffle presents our ultimate music and party breakdown. Mostly based on a balance of fun and music, this is what we’ll be up to. So, enjoy and get after it y’all!
Filter Magazine’s Showdown at Cedar Street Courtyard presented by American Rag, March 14-16, 208 W. 4th Street – A perennial favorite among SXSW goers, this showcase is set in an outside brick courtyard with overhanging trees. It is a special venue whose reputation for a consistently amazing line-ups is further reinforced by this year’s list of performers. Local Natives (of LA), Shout Out Louds, Willy Moon, St. Lucia, MS MR, Wild Belle, LA’s Haim, Wildcat! Wildcat!, The Neighborhood, Charli XCX and Young Dreams are all bands we’re dying to see.
Nylon Terrace at the W Hotel, March 15-16, 200 Lavaca St. – One of the best parties of the week, the Nylon event goes down on a breezy terrace with killer music and the coolest scene in Austin. This year Nylon will host Capital Cities (of LA), Youngblood Hawke, Willy Moon, Viceroy, Kitten and a special guest to boot!
Truffle Notes: The W hotel is the place to stay for bands and celebs, so whether you’re watching a performance, eating at Trace or stalking the fleet of black Escalades at the back entrance, star-spotting is highly likely . . . not that we care.
Dickies SXSW Showcase @ Lustre Pearl, March 14-16, 97 Rainey St. – When we crave Austin, we crave Lustre Pearl. “The Rainey Street Bar That Started It All” is a cozy, comfy and oh-so-cool cool little house and backyard that is Austin at its best, and not much can top listening to quality tunes outside on a warm Texas night. Luckily, the Dickies line-up this year is as good as the ambiance, so we foresee spending lots of time here! Generationals, St. Lucia, Icona Pop, Toro y Moi, Poolside, Talib Kweli, The Joy Formidable and Fitz and the Tantrums, among others will be jamming while we enjoy onsite food truck tacos and local Lone Star cervezas.
DTS/Slacker SXSW Showcase @ Clive Bar, March 13-14, 609 Davis St. — Another Bar for which we have a soft spot, Clive Bar, has a vibe much like it’s neighbor, Lustre Pearl. With performances by Guards, Lord Huron, Willy Moon, Cold War Kids (of LBC), Alla-Las, Hanni El Khatib (of LA), Sinkane and !!!, we’ll be happy to hold down a table outside for a while. Did someone say pitcher of margies?
The Windish Agency/ House of Vans Party @ Mohawk, March 13-16, 912 Red River St. – The Windish Agency partners with Vans to bring this SXSW sequel to the original House of Vans show in Brooklyn. Occurring over two stages at one of Austin’s most beloved live music venues, Mohawk, the showcase features heavyweights like Iggy and the Stooges, Ghostface Killah, Toro y Moi, Disclosure, Japandroids, Sky Ferreira, Icona Pop, Austra and Guards, among others.
The Warner Sound captured by Nikon @ The Belmont, March 12-14, 612 W. 4th St. – The newly-refurbished historic hotel, hosts Warner Music’s official showcase featuring Flaming Lips, Atlas Genius, Tegan and Sara, Guards, Frightened Rabbit, The Joy Formidable, Charli XCX, Icona Pop, Action Bronson and Lianne La Havas. Seeing such an eclectic line-up at the classic Austin hotel will bring pure joy to those that attend.
Hype Machine Hotel, March 13-16, Whitley 301 Brazos St. – Posting up at the Whitley in downtown Austin, Hype Machine Hotel is ready to bring it with performances by Solange, The Specials, Disclosure, John Talabot, Charli XCX, Foxygen, St. Lucia, CHVRCHES, Austra, MS MR, Sky Ferreira, Rudimental, Mac DeMarco, Vacationer, Toro y Moi, !!!, Cold War Kids, Ra Ra Riot. We’re going to believe the hype on this one.
Urban Outfitters: Rookie Magazine Day Party, March 13-16, UT Campus Store at 2406 Guadalupe St. – Rookie Magazine, founded by everyone’s favorite 16 year old fashionista turned mega-blogger turned editor in chief, Tavi Gevinson, is throwing its own party at the Urban Outfitters store on the University of Texas campus. Stacked with an impressive indie line-up of Young Dreams, Indians, Guards, Icona Pop, Charli XCX, Autre Ne Veut, Mac DeMarco, Ducktails, we don’t mind if we do!
Sonos Studio, March 11-15, 608 E. 3rd St. – One of the premier art and music galleries in LA, Sonos Studio will create the Sonos Playground in Austin for an interactive sonic installation that explores the intersection of art and music. Guests can watch LA’s own, Jason Bentley broadcast his popular “Morning Becomes Eclectic” KCRW radio show live from the Sonos venue and check out live performances by Poolside, Robert Delong, Sir Sly, Cloud Nothings, MNDR, Yellow Red Sparks, White Denim, Allah-Las and more.
Pandora Discovery Den @ Antone’s, March 12-15, 213 W. 5th St. – Pandora sets up shop this year for 4 days, across 2 stages at Antone’s, an Austin live music institution. Performances by Talib Kweli, Angel Haze, Breakbot, Guards, St. Lucia, Dead Prez, Macklemore & Ryan Lewis, Hanni El Khatib, Gold Fields, and Robert DeLong bolster the attention on the already popular Pandora event.
ASOS Music Lounge, March 14-16, 201 Brazos St. – Located at the Cedar Door on Brazos Street, this three-day private party will host artists, celebrities, media and tastemakers. With free tacos, open bar and performances by Dan Croll, Angel Haze, Charli XCX, Youngblood Hawke and The Neighborhood, ASOS Music Lounge looks to be a premiere event.
Spotify House, March 12-15, 1010 Cesar Chavez – Always one of the most sought after parties of SXSW, Spotify took over a cute green house on the corner of Cesar Chavez and Medina this year. Lineup announcements go out daily via text, but, knowing Spotify, we’re sure there will be live performances by some of the most buzzed about bands this year. Also, this home away from home will have onsite food trucks and ping pong, so we will most definitely be checking it out.
One Day Parties/Shows:
The Tumblr. House presented by GAP, March 15th @ Clive Bar, 609 Davis St. – Once the Slacker party is over at Clive, GAP comes in to take over. With performances by Ra Ra Riot, Shout Out Louds, Ducktails, Vacationer, Kitten, Macklemore & Ryan Lewis, we’ll no doubt be back for more!
Check Yo Ponytail/Mad Decent/Fool’s Gold Official SXSW Superparty, March 14, EMO’s East/Annex, 2015 Riverside Drive, Building #4 – Some people live for Fool’s Gold anything, so we had to include this dance-your-ass-off Superparty. Live performances by Presets, Classixx, Brooke Candy, A-Trak, Wavves, !!!, Icona Pop, Flosstradamus and others guarantee a killer day if you have the energy for it.
Live Nation @ The Belmont, March 16, 612 W. 4th St. — Live Nation Labs takes over Skype’s Mobile Lounge/Live Nation House at The Belmont to close out SXSW with a Saturday evening of Willy Moon, The Neighborhood, and Capital Cities. Spoiler alert: This is going to be a good time!
Vice at Viceland, March 14, 401 E. Cesar Chavez St. – Vice does not disappoint this year with shows by Kendrick Lamar, Action Bronson, Baauer, Divine Fits, The Joy Formidable, Icona Pop, and more, but one of the most hyped up parties for Vice this week is the Lionfest event on Thursday featuring none other than the newly-named Snoop Lion along with Major Lazer and Mavado.
The NPR Showcase @ Stubb’s, March 13 — Back touring for the upcoming release of their 2013 album, Mosquito, the Yeah Yeah Yeahs will headline the NPR Showcase at Austin’s legendary BBQ venue Stubb’s. Nick Cave & The Bad Seeds, Waxahatchee, Café Tacvba, Alt-J will also be performing for an amazing day of live music. God save the Karen O!
Depeche Mode @ Brazos Hall, March 15 – need we say more?
Doritos Jacked Bold Stage, March 14 – LL Cool J paired up with Doritos this year for a one day og hip-hop super event featuring performances by the veteran rapper, along with Ice Cube, Public Enemy and Doug E. Fresh.
Devendra Banhart and Iron & Wine will do intimate shows at the Central Presbyterian Chrurch (200 E. 8th St.) on March 16. The church is a unique setting known for career changing performances and we foresee some beautiful shows.
If reading this list was enough to make you exhausted, feel free to hoist the white flag at any point and go straight to Barton Springs to soak your toes, get away from the madness and enjoy the other benefits of being in Austin for the week. You can also book a blow out at chic downtown refuge and A-list salon, ROAR, where adorable owner Rory McNeill will surely make you feel refreshed and energized for your next event. Finally, make reservations now for a well-deserved Sunday night dinner at Lamberts for the ribs, mac n’ cheese and potential Jack White sighting.
Truffle Notes: If combing the streets of Austin for live indie performances is not your thing, you can still take part in some SXSW action by watching “Watch What Happens Live” this week! Andy Cohen brought the Bravo clubhouse to Austin and commissioned buzzband (and LA natives), the Mowgli’s, to be the Bravo house band for the week. To be honest, watching the Mowgli’s perform “Tardy for the Party” might end up being one of our highlights from Austin, just saying.
This piece was written by our Truffle Hunter, Kristen HG: Director of Business Affairs at Universal Music Publishing Group and LA native (a graduate of Marlborough School in Hancock Park). When Kristen is not attending live shows and signing new artists, she provides Daily Truffle’s inside scoop for music happenings around Los Angeles and beyond. Kristen also writes for various travel blogs including Vacationist.com and Matador Network, among others.