Real Estate first gained notice for decidedly un-rock-and-roll subject matter. The group turned its gaze on their suburban upbringing in Ridgewood, New Jersey, filling out their 2009 self-titled debut with songs about childhood and beach days. But undercutting all this happy-go-lucky easiness is a dark core, best expressed by Martin Courtney’s plaintive voice and guitarist Matthew Mondanile’s wandering guitar riffs. 2011’s Days ratcheted up this sense of longing, as Real Estate went from being a hometown favorite into a buzzworthy touring act.
Now the group returns to Austin as a festival mainstay. They’re riding high on the strength of this year’s Atlas, a critically-acclaimed effort recorded at Wilco’s Loft studio space in Chicago. Growing up continues to be a deep concern for the band, one whose members now live across the country and are starting their own families. On “Crime,” don’t let the dreamy atmosphere fool you. “Toss and turn all night / Don’t know how to make it right / Crippling anxiety,” Courtney sings. The song shows off what Real Estate does so well: mix the sunshine in with the clouds.
Catch Real Estate at ACL Fest 2014:
*Sunday, Oct 5 – 5 p.m., RetailMeNot Stage
*Sunday, Oct 12 – 3 p.m., RetailMeNot Stage
Michael Fitzpatrick of Fitz & the Tantrums is one of the most dynamic frontmen in the music business, turning heads for his mixture of Motown soul and modern edginess. It seems fitting that Fitzpatrick started out on the other side of the glass. As a sound engineer, he learned the trade under producer Mickey Petralia, who’s eclectic resume includes Beck, Flight of the Conchords, and Rage Against The Machine. He brings that ear to his own music, too. When he was originally putting the Tantrums together, Fitzpatrick knew he needed a co-lead singer he could play off of musically. Enter Noelle Scaggs, who previously put in time as a backup for the Black Eyed Peas, Mayer Hawthorne, and Damian Marley. In the live setting, the pair are unstoppable, alternating the spotlight with ease.
Last year, Fitz & the Tantrums stopped by KUTX’s Studio 1A and told us that Austin was the final piece in the band’s rise. In 2010, the group attended SXSW for the first time, but their shows were sparsely-attended and somewhat disheartening. It wasn’t until a final performance for Dangerbird Records at Mellow Johnny’s that something clicked. A few months later, the Tantrums were signed to Dangerbird and well on their way. Now the group has a second album to its name–More Than Just A Dream–and they’re back in Austin for ACL Fest. For today’s song of the day, we’re diving back into their stellar Studio 1A set for a live take on “Out Of My League.”
Catch Fitz & the Tantrums at ACL Fest 2014:
*Sunday, Oct 5 – 4 p.m., Honda Stage
*Wednesday, Oct 8 – 7 p.m., Stubb’s (official ACL late night show)
*Sunday, Oct 12 – 4 p.m., Honda Stage
The Austin City Limits Music Festival is one of the most anticipated festivals of the year—and one of the biggest. 143 artists—8 stages—and six days of music, spread over two weekends. It’s all about the live music experience, and that’s where we come in. This week on the Austin Music Experience, we’ll give you a preview of what to expect at this year’s festival. We’ve got exclusive live performances from both big names and fresh faces: Spoon. The Avett Brothers. Jenny Lewis. Jimmy Cliff. Plus local artists like Black Pistol Fire and Emily Wolfe, making Austin proud. And we’ve got a few musical discoveries that you might want to put on your ACL checklist. So put on your sunscreen and pull up a lawn chair—it’s the Austin Music Experience, ACL Fest 2014 edition. Listen below!
On Friday, October 3, join KUTX at the Four Seasons Hotel as host Susan Castle kicks off ACL Fest in style. There’ll be live music by Hard Proof, Lake Street Dive, Temples, and The Head and the Heart. Plus, your donation of $10 supports the Seton Shivers Cancer Center and gets you a gourmet breakfast taco and coffee. It’s great music for a great cause. Mark your calendar and make sure to join us starting at 9 a.m. Friday, October 3, on the lawn of the Four Seasons Hotel. Not planning on heading to Zilker Park for the Festival? Bring a blanket or lawn chair and hang out with us and get a little bit of the ACL experience.
9:30 AM Hard Proof
Locally produced and internationally-inspired, Hard Proof is an Austin-based collective that brings intense Afrobeats to the state of Texas. Hard Proof tightly fuses sounds from sub-Saharan Africa with adventurous jazz and deep funk to stimulate your brain and move your feet. Members of Hard Proof also perform with bands such as Black Joe Lewis and the Honeybears, Ocote Soul Sounds, Echocentrics, The Calm Blue Sea and Cougar.
10:30 AM Lake Street Dive
Lake Street Dive have been performing since 2004 after meeting as fellow students at the New England Conservatory in Boston. The band was hand picked by Minneapolis trumpet/guitar player Mike Olson and named after an actual neighborhood of seedy bars in his hometown. After finding Youtube fame through a cover of “I Want You Back,” the group quickly garnered the praise of Rolling Stone and Billboard for their fresh sounds and charismatic soul. Despite always looking forward to further musical development, Lake Street Dive strives to maintain their dive band feel whether playing for a crowd of 10 or 10,000.
11:30 AM Temples
Temples are a psychedelic group from The Midlands region of England. Fusing the tried and true psychedelic elements of classic groups like Pink Floyd with more contemporary driving forces reminiscent of MGMT and Yeasayer, Temples is sure to satisfy the psych rock tastes of old and new. With a collection of videos that incorporate the abstract visual editing style of the 1960s, Temples commands your attention whether you’re a fan of simplistic psych rock or vivdly constructed progressive rock.
12:30 PM The Head and the Heart
With Americana roots and strong vocal harmonics that swell like a river, Head and the Heart finds its anchor in solid songwriting that has even the jaded humming along by the second listen. From the very beginning, their reputation as a phenomenal live band has preceded them wherever they play. Head and the Heart’s orchestral elements and three-part vocal harmonies complement one another for an unforgettable and engaging live performance.
Tune in or drop by at 9AM on October 3rd to catch all this great music!
By Tyler Pratt for KUT News
Calling it one of their most energetic lineups to date, the 13th annual Austin City Limits Music Festival also includes a blast of nostalgia.
Pearl Jam is headlining and The Replacements are top billed. Major hip-hop acts of the 2000s, Outkast and Eminem are also headliners. The festival also sees a significant number of electronic music acts with Calvin Harris and Skrillex headlining – and groups such as Major Lazer, Zedd, Phantogram, Chromeo and CHVRCHES in the big font. Beck rounds out the list of this year’s headliners.
Last year’s festival drew some criticism for a lack of female performers. However, this year’s top billing includes international superstars, Lana Del Rey and Lorde (though the latter will be for the second weekend only). Female acts such as St. Vincent, IggyAzalea, Jenny Lewis, Nikki Lane, tUnE -yArDs and My Brightest Diamond also made the cut.
Other big acts at this year’s festival include the indie pop of Foster the People, Broken Bells and Belle and Sebastian. The Avett Brothers and The Head and the Heart bring out the folk rock. And some surprises were post punk revivalists Interpol, hip-hop wizChildish Gambino and Jamaican reggae legend, Jimmy Cliff.
And of course there are plenty of Austin bands performing – including Spoon, Asleep at the Wheel, Black Pistol Fire, Mike and the Moonpies, Hard Proof, Wood and Wireand Riders Against the Storm. Many of the local acts, however, will play only one of the two weekends.
Three-day passes go on sale at 10 Tuesday morning. The festival also says single day tickets will be available later this spring. The 2014 Austin City Limits Music Festival takes over Zilker Park October 3-5 and October 10-12. More information is available ataclfestival.com