Truth be told, making a schedule for this year’s Austin Psych Fest felt nearly impossible. The once small, independent festival has grown tremendously since its inception in 2008, this year offering a “WTF!” stellar lineup.
Friday headliner favorites include the Black Angels, a must-see not only for their long history of sultry, psych rock hits but also for their Austin roots and major hand in curation of the festival itself. The Black Lips rarely disappoint with their bluesy punk rock and consistently rowdy live shows and up-and-coming Quilt, will take you on a psychedelic folk trip with their dreamy new album, Held in Splendor. Additional Friday contenders include La Femme, Woods and The Fresh & Onlys.
The Brian Jonestown Massacre should be enough to lure you back for Saturday, as they’ve been leaders in the experimental rock scene since the early '90s. Recent SXSW veterans, Temples, feel like close cousins to Tame Impala with their upbeat psych pop, and Boogarins represent their hometown Brazil well with a similar, sunny sound. Jacco Gardner modernizes the Zombies with hypnotic, baroque pop and a few shades darker you'll find the Horrors and Moon Duo.
Sunday! Go see The War on Drugs because… they're The War on Drugs? Noah Lennox (of Animal Collective) revives Panda Bear for the first time in a while, with synthy tunes that have you feeling like you’re lost in space. Get you're grunge on with Californian garage punkers Cosmonauts, and check out London’s TOY for a younger, shoegaze laced Horrors. Still with me? Mikal Cronin and Secret Colours help close out the day, by at which point you should be dripping in enough reverb to last you the year.
All in all, there isn’t a bad decision to be made throughout the weekend. If you can’t make it out from wherever you are, this Spotify playlist should help you still live out the good times. Until next time…
Image courtesy of Austin Psych Fest & The Reverberation Appreciation Society