SXSW brings bands from all over the world, many of which are making their debut in the United States. If SXSW goes well, these bands hopefully return to do a full tour across the states. Last year’s festival saw bands such as Bastille make waves at SXSW after crossing the great pond. This year, there were plenty of equally wonderful European acts to discover and I couldn’t be more thrilled about the European invasion that SXSW brings to Austin.
Empire Control Garage and The British Music Embassy made seeing UK and other European artists accessible. I cut a catchy set from Thumpers and the Crookes at these events. Simian Ghost from Sweden performed an unusual, but hypnotizing set with the singer standing against the crowd facing his bandmates to wash his vocals into their instrumentals.
Coldplay made their SXSW debut at the iTunes Music Festival, but it was another UK artist that really stole the show at the iTunes event. London Grammar had some of the biggest buzz at the festival and deservedly so.
Over at Fader Fort, Sweden’s Little Dragon’s atmospheric sound turned the tent into a big dance party.
If you’re ever at SXSW, make sure to see some of the bands from a different country — you never know when you might get the chance again.