We at Pandora are beyond stoked to toast 30 years of SXSW. Help us celebrate at the #PandoraSXSW Discovery Den in Austin at The Gatsby. Don’t forget to RSVP! If you can’t make it we’ll be live streaming everything during each event with Pandora Curators providing live commentary. Check out what our Curators are looking forward to this year:
DANCE: Wednesday, March 16th
Hey I’m Party Ben, the Pandora Dance & Electronic Music Curator! “Pandora Discovery Den Dance Day” might be tough to say, but it’ll be easy to enjoy since the lineup is excellent front to back. Plus I’m excited for my debut as cohost on the Pandora livestream! Our afternoon headliner is none other than MSTRKRFT, all the way from Canada with their patented edgy electro style. It’s been seven years since their last album, but an EDM birdie told me they’ve got a new one in the works, and their show should raise the roof.
On the slightly more experimental front, YACHT (Portland combo Jona Bechtolt and Claire L. Evans) are another longtime fave.Their sound combines disco and synthpop with thoughtful and multi-layered lyrics, a perfect balance of avant-garde edge and groovy fun.
We’re also incredibly excited to have Gryffin on board this year. The young producer burst onto the scene in 2015 with his hypnotic mid-tempo remix of Tove Lo’s “Talking Body,” one of those tracks that everybody in the world was suddenly talking about. Its chill, melodic style helped define 2015 as the year of the “new mellow” in dance music. He says he’s planning a live set that combines the continuity of a DJ set with live instrumentation, and I can’t wait to see it.
Another up-and-comer on our afternoon bill is Louis the Child, a duo from Chicago who offer up quirky sonics and a sort of thoughtful cool vibe, with a nod to trap music’s tense rhythmic structure. Their charming single “It’s Strange” with Bay Area favorite K.Flay is grabbing a ton of attention.
Our evening show gets a little heavier with headliner Adventure Club bringing their signature melodic sound.
Their roots are in dubstep of course,
but their recent single with DallasK “Crash 2.0” proves they’re not opposed to a 4/4 beat. Also exploring new sounds is Baauer, who has turned from his viral “Harlem Shake” fame to thrillingly edgy trap andhip hop sounds on his upcoming album Aa.
We’ve also got an electronic legend on the bill: none other than Canadian producer Tiga. He blew up back in 2001 with his deadpan cover (along with producer Zyntherius) of “Sunglasses at Night,” and he’s been balancing a winking cheekiness with bleeding-edge electro and techno since then. He’s got an awesome new album too, No Fantasy Required features a track “Make Me Fall in Love” that’s already a staple in my DJ sets.
On the more atmospheric side, we’ve got white-hot London trio HÆLOS, who sound like classic dark trip hop mixed with contemporary electronica. And just added to kick off our evening lineup, duo Mako features a longtime DJ and a Julliard grad, and their music balances EDM power with thoughtful melodic intricacy.
Now that’s a party. If you can’t join us in Austin, don’t miss the livestream of Dance Day on Wednesday, March 16th!
AMERICANA: Thursday, March 17th
Hey twang fans! My name is Eric Shea and I’m a Lead Curator at Pandora. I take on many different genres but my musical heart belongs to Americana. Pro tip: get there early and see The Strumbellas open at 2:00 PM! I’m extra excited to check out The Cactus Blossoms. Jack Torrey and Page Burkum sing in those high-lonesome harmonies that remind me of old sibling acts like The Louvin Brothers or The Everly Brothers.
As much as I dig her originals, I sure hope Lydia Loveless whips out her Rickenbacker and plays that dreamy cover of Echo & The Bunnymen’s “The Killing Moon.
It’s hard not to think of Bob Dylan when hearing Jake Bugg sing in that high, reedy tenor. But Bugg’s rowdier songs aren’t afraid to enter the honky tonk through the swinging doors and exit through the plate-glass window.
Don’t miss Margo Price! I’ve been into this woman’s music back when she went by Margo & The Pricetags. She’s been compared to everyone from Loretta Lynn to Sunny Sweeney, but Margo’s got her own take on timeless twang and honky tonk. Speaking of classic country inspired Americana, I think Sam Outlaw is going to put on one hell of a show. He’s just as legit as Cale Tyson, in my opinion.
How awesome is it that Wynonna & The Big Noise is playing? Comparatively speaking, their sound is rooted in bluesier biker-rock – the kind of stuff that would sound perfect at Sturgis.
Hayes Carll has been compared to Nebraska-era Springsteen, but to my ears he’s totally got his own tone. Sure, there are some semi-outlaw Steve Earle inspired moments, but Carll’s true grit seems to stem from a darker and more dangerous place.
Want western swing? Don’t miss Asleep At The Wheel! I’ve never seen another band play that bygone subgenre with period-correct authority. I’m equally excited to see my old pal Jack Ingram. Aside from being a stellar songwriter and an incredible guitarist, he’s just a really nice dude.
Catch a preview of all the Discovery Den artists on our #PandoraSXSW station. See you all on March 16, 2016 at Discovery Den.