This past week, Austin, TX, the city I am currently calling home, was flipped upside down and turned into the pinnacle of all things new and exciting in music thanks to the annual South By Southwest festival. So much more than just your average music festival, SXSW brings budding artists from across the globe to perform all over Austin, helping pave the way for some these up and coming bands to turn into full-on superstars.
Last year, Courtney Barnett and Leon Bridges were some of the memorable standouts, but who are we expecting to look back at next year and say “Damn, I saw them at a small bar at South By and now they’re kickin’ it at the Grammy’s’? Here are 10 acts who are majorly buzz-worthy at this year’s festival that are south by so gonna make it big:
Norwegian blondie Aurora is young but potent. Her latest album just dropped featuring hits like “Conquerer” that will be putting her on the map this year post SXSW. She’s absolutely adorable, and entirely memorable thanks to her fairy-like stage presence and killer vocals.
2. Declan McKenna
17-year-old British boy Declan McKenna’s label Columbia Records has said they haven’t been this excited about an artist since Adele. Yeah, you read that right. ADELE. Though his career is just beginning, Declan McKenna’s tracks are mellowed out guitar driven masterpieces. Stay tuned because a star is born with this one.
An all girl, Spanish, chill, authentic rock band. Could life get any better? Hinds is made up of Madrid, Spain ladies who have perfected modern grunge rock. Their sound is catchy with a tactful punch that is making waves across SXSW.
4. Lukas Graham
Denmark has brought us Lukas Graham, and for that, we are eternally grateful. You’ve probably heard his rising hit “7 Years” because it made you cry the first time you took a listen, but this Copenhagen native has so much potential it’s mind blowing. Soulful tunes, raw lyrics, and a radio ready sound.
If there’s a hit waiting to blow up at this year’s SXSW, it is Transviolet’s “New Bohemia”. The song, along with their other tracks, offer a refreshing new alt-pop mix of sounds that are timed perfectly for what is hype in music right now. (Psst, they’re touring with Twenty One Pilots this summer.)
Prince said that this Australian guitar guru reminds him of his younger self. If that doesn’t sell you, I don’t know what will. His funky tunes are straight up electric all over SXSW and will have you grooving in no time.
7. Frankie Cosmos
If you’re a big fan of quirky leading females like Lana or FKA Twigs, Frankie Cosmos is for you. Her songs have a dreamy feel to them and fit perfectly to what music needs right now. “Young” and “Sand” showcase her tunes and her major potential as an artist.
8. Tor Miller
Handsomely talented Tor Miller is striking a chord across ATX with his soulful, loving sound. Check out track “Midnight” to get a feel for his profound tracks.
9. Coast Modern
Get this: Coast Modern’s first ever live show was the Wednesday of SXSW and their single “Hollow Life” already had over 1 million listens on Spotify. That’s how fantastic they are. Approachable alternative rock/reggae style tunes, Coast Modern have a chill vibe that you should expect major things from this year.
10. Milk & Bone
Canadian girl duet Milk & Bone take synth alt-pop to new heights. Their songs are euphoric are relaxing yet exciting. Give “Coconut Water” a listen.