Our 2018 ACL Picks: Weekend One

The KUTX staff shares their picks for the first weekend of the Austin City Limits Music Festival 

FRIDAY, Oct. 5

Paul McCartney

Friday, Oct. 5 and 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.

     – Rick McNulty, Host: Fridays 7 p.m. – 11 p.m./Saturdays 7 p.m. – 11 p.m. (See more of Rick’s picks HERE.)

Recommended track: Paul McCartney & Wings – “Nineteen Hundred and Eighty-Five”


Friday, Oct.5 and Oct. 12 at 2:45 p.m.  on the HomeAway Stage

Chicago’s Fatimah Warner is almost the antithesis of a hip-hop star, vulnerable, withdrawn, yet poetic and fierce in her message. Her stylistic and just-released Room 25  is one the year’s best albums. 

   – Jeff McCord, Music Director/Host: Fridays 6 a.m. – 9 a.m.

Recommended Track: “Blaxploitation”


Topaz Jones 

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.

     – Art Levy, Host: Sundays 10 a.m. – 2 p.m. (See more of Art’s picks HERE.)

Recommended Track: “Tropicana”





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.

     – Matt Reilly, Program Director (See more of Matt’s picks HERE.)

Recommended Track: “Master of Puppets”


St. Vincent

Saturday, Oct. 5, Miller Lite Stage and Sunday, Oct. 14, HomeAway Stage

 You never quite know what you’ll encounter from St. Vincent whose musical and personal stylings always seem to be well ahead of the curve.  Her most recent album of electro-pop, Masseduction, was delightfully edgy.  And when push comes to shove, she can really shred on guitar.

     – Jay Trachtenberg, Host: Mon-Thu 12 p.m. – 2 p.m. (See more of Jay’s picks HERE.)

Recommended track:  Los Ageless


Saturday, Oct. 6 and 12 at 7:30 p.m. on the Barton Springs Stage

Calle 13’s record “Entran Los Que Quieran” rocked my world when it came it, expanding my ideas about hip-hop and politics at the same time. Residente is the main voice of Calle 13, and I’ll be interested to see how his solo work diverges from his collaborative work.  Good thing there are 2 weekends because he’s playing opposite St. Vincent during weekend one. I’ll catch her the first weekend, and him the second

     – Elizabeth McQueen, Host: Saturdays 10 a.m. – 2 p.m. (See more of Elizabeth’s picks HERE.)

Recommended Track: “Desencuentro”


Saturday, Oct. 6 and 12 at 8:30 p.m. on the Honda Stage

I saw Justice in 2007 when they were touring their first album, †. Given my recent reinvigorated interest in electronic music and the fact that they’re headlining? Why the heck not?

     – Jack Anderson, Host: Saturdays 7 a.m. – 10 a.m. (See more of Jack’s picks HERE.)

Recommended Track: “Phantom Pt II”

Mon Laferte

Saturday, Oct. 6th and 13th at 2:30 p.m. on the Honda Stage

This Chilean singer has a powerful voice which she uses to great effect on many styles of music from blues to ballads to cumbias to mexican rancheras. I’m looking forward to seeing her on a big stage for the first time and joining the crowd as we sing along to “Tu Falta De Querer.”
     – Michael Crockett, Host: Horizontes Sundays 7 p.m. – 10 p.m. (See more of Michael’s picks HERE.)
Recommended Track: Mon Laferte, “Tu Falta De Querer

SUNDAY, Oct. 7


Travis Scott

Sunday, Oct. 7 and Oct. 13 at 8:45 p.m. on the American Express Stage

Whether you’re calling him LaFlame, XX, Cactus Jack, Travis Scott is an artist I have been following since the very beginning. Stumbling upon him in my blogging days when he was rhyme partners with OG Chess in Houston, I have followed Travis every step of the way. The artist I’m giving credit for ushering in this new wave of Punk Rap, Travis Scott is hands down a must see for everyone.

     – Aaron “Fresh” Knight, Host: Fridays 11 p.m. – 1 a.m./The Breaks: Saturdays 10 p.m. – 1 a.m. (See more of Fresh’s picks HERE.)
Recommended Track: “Stop Trying To Be God”


Shakey Graves

Sunday, Oct. 7 and Oct. 13 at 7:00 p.m. on the Barton Springs Stage

Because we should all support the local guy making great new songs.

     – John Aielli, Host: Mon-Thu 7 a.m. – 9 a.m.

Recommended Track: “Kids These Days”

Parquet Courts

Sunday, Oct. 7 and Oct. 13 at 3:00 p.m. on Barton Springs Stage

Smarmy in interviews, sweet to their fans, and stellar on stage. These dudes love their fans base and performing for them, so when one of your favorite bands puts out one of the best albums of the year, they’re always gonna tops your recs list. If they stay true to their recent setlists, you’re in for a LOT of Wide Awake with a hearty mix of oldies.

– Taylor Wallace, Host: Mon-Thu 8 p.m.- 11 p.m.

Recommended Track: “Almost Had to Start a Fight/In and Out of Patience

Sunday, Oct. 7th at 4 pm on the Tito’s Handmade Vodka Stage

– Ryan Wen, Host (See more of Ryan’s picks HERE.)

Find a spot on the grass, find some grass, lay down and let Khruangbin whisk you away on a head-bopping psychedelic journey.
Recommended track: Khruangbin – “White Gloves”

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