photo by Emree Weaver
When most people think of Austin music they probably think of country, rock or Americana, but in the past 15 years, Austin has become a hotbed for groups pushing the boundaries of traditional Latin rhythms and styles. At the forefront of Austin’s new wave of Latin fusion is the aptly name Superfonicos. Started by founding members Nico Sanchez and Erick Bohorquez in 2014, the duo expanded their stage presence with five new members in 2016 and committed to releasing their debut EP in 2018. Now two years later, that recording, Suelta, is out and perfectly highlights the band’s undeniably catchy combination of Afrobeat and Cumbia. To make 2018 even more super the band was tapped to play the second weekend of the 2018 ACL Music Fest. Listen to their recent performance from Studio 1A and then go find this Austin musical treasure at one of their many local shows.
10/14 @ Austin City Limits Music Festival
10/20 @ Empire Garage
11/9 @ Symphony Square
11/17 @ Sahara Lounge
12/31 @ Auditorium Shores
Camera: Gabriel C. Pérez, Salvador Castro, Jenan Taha, Emree Weaver; Edit: Emree Weaver
Camera: Gabriel C. Pérez, Salvador Castro, Jenan Taha, Emree Weaver; Edit: Jenan Taha
Camera: Gabriel C. Pérez, Salvador Castro, Jenan Taha, Emree Weaver; Edit: Gabriel C. Pérez
I’m getting to that age where I’m constantly doing a cost/benefit analysis of going to large events. ACL Fest is a prime example. This year, the benefits are winning. So far anyway. My rather obvious picks below:
Friday, Oct. 5 and Oct. 12 at 7:45 p.m. on the American Express Stage
He’s a Beatle. We wouldn’t be here without him. Notice the set time. It’s 2 hours and 15 minutes. He’s a mid-septugenarian knight! This will be one for the whole family.
Recommended Track: Paul McCartney & Wings, “Band on the Run”
Saturday, Oct. 6 and 12 American Express Stage 8:00 p.m.
The lords of metal always bring it. I’ve seen them a couple of times before and my ears are still ringing. In fact, I may just listen from North Austin while my windows shake. I will obey my master.
Recommended Track: “Master of Puppets”
Sunday, Oct. 7 and 13 on the American Express Stage 8:00 p.m.
As an 80’s kid, this scores some prime nostalgia points for me. Not because she was around then, but because she channels Prince and Sheila E and all the great soul pop of that era.
Recommended Track: “Make Me Feel”
Friday, Oct. 5 and Friday, Oct 12 at 3:45 p.m. on the American Express Stage
So many bands stand completely still on stage and don’t consider the visual aspect to performance. Not so David Byrne. His latest tour features a completely wire-free backing band, which allows the entire ensemble to move in formation around the stage like a cross between a high school marching band and a street party. Plus, hearing all his hits change over time and still sound fresh gives me hope I’ll be as cool when I’m AARP age.
Recommended Track: Talking Heads, “Born Under Punches (The Heat Goes On)”
Friday, Oct. 5 at 11:15 a.m. on the HomeAway Stage
Topaz is one of those performers where you wonder, “how is this guy not headlining ACL Fest already?!” I saw him at a tiny club at SXSW 2017 and he was phenomenal at everything: rapping, singing, dancing, making you feel like an integral part of the performance.
Recommended Track: Topaz Jones, “Tropicana”
The Weather Station
Friday, Oct. 5 at 2:15 p.m. on the Tito’s Stage
Quieter performers can suffer competing against the dreaded ACL stage bleed, but I’ve seen the Weather Station, ahem, weather quite worse before. The Canadian band is another SXSW alumni/survivor, somehow holding an ear-fatigued crowd in the palm of its hand with its transcendent folk-rock hybrid. This is a band that’s meant to be heard in the open-air, where it can truly stretch out with harmonies and atmospheric guitar.
Recommended Track: The Weather Station, “Thirty”
Friday, Oct. 5th and Friday, Oct. 12 at 7:45 p.m. on the American Express Stage
If you haven’t seen the man in person, then stop holding out. He’s a freaking Beatle, and he’s on the Mount Rushmore of pop music. He’s also 76 years old and he can’t tour forever. Oh, and he’s bringing a horn section this year.
Recommended track: Paul McCartney & Wings – “Nineteen Hundred and Eighty-Five”
Saturday, Oct. 6th at 7:30 p.m. on the Miller Lite Stage and Sunday Oct. 14 at 7:00p.m. on the HomeAway Stage
Annie Clark shows all the hallmarks of a future legend: each new album is more adventurous and robust than the last, the scope and production of her shows have expanded, and she is absolutely fearless. She’s an amazing guitarist, to boot.
Recommended track: “Jesus Saves, I Spend”
Sunday, Oct. 7th and Sunday, Oct. 14 at 4:00 p.m. on the American Express Stage
Sunday’s lineup seems the strongest to me, yet something tells me that Janelle is still ascendant and capable of stealing the day. What she learned from Prince will most certainly be on display (and you can catch his old band, The Revolution, an hour later).
Recommended track: “Make Me Feel”