12 unmissable rising acts to catch at SXSW

From a new music standpoint, few festivals match the scope and strength of rising acts as SXSW. There are over 1500 acts playing across the week-long festival in Austin, TX, and here are 12 we think will be generating the most buzz (and biggest queues).

AJ Tracey

Who: Rising grime MC set to follow in Stormzy‘s footsteps with chart success.

What to expect: ‘Buster Cannon’ and ‘Thiago Silva’ are full-on mosh-pit-pleasing bangers – rowdy times are on the horizon.


Where to see them: Plush (Mar 15)


Who: London rapper who’s wowed the public with his addictive material – and Drake, who remixed one his songs.

What to expect: Dave’s an accomplished pianist as well as a skilled wordsmith on the mic. Sure he’ll do a bit of both.

Where to see them: Latitiude 30 (Mar 14)

Forth Wanderers


Who: Swampy and grungy alt rock from New Jersey.

What to expect: Their debut EP was a lo-fi delight, but live shows are becoming polished and unmissable experiences

Where to see them: Latitude 30 (Mar 13), The Sidewinder Outside (Mar 14)

Joey Purp

Who: Chance The Rapper-affiliated rapper from Chicago.

What to expect: From hip-shaking pop crossover (‘Girls @’) to headbanging anthems (‘Godbody’), his material is becoming as diverse as it is enthralling.

Where to see them: Mohawk Outdoors (Mar 16)

Maggie Rogers

Who: Folk-pop extraordinaire whose viral encounter with Pharrell set her on the path to stardom.

What to expect: Her material shifts from twinkling acoustic stunners to pounding techno covers of Neil Young’s ‘Harvest Moon’, with some sure-fire pop hits in between. Extraordinary stuff.

Where to see them: TBC

Middle Kids

Who: Aussie indie-pop trio taking their skills global.

What to expect: Their debut EP ‘Edge of Nowhere’ is a stunningly mature introduction and the majestic ‘Never Start’ will no doubt become an anthemic moment.

Where to see them: Elyisum (Mar 15), Radio Day Stage (Mar 16)


Who: New York indie duo with the world at their feet.

What to expect: ‘Rodeo’ and new song ‘Dress/Undress’ has got us all in a tizzy, and it’ll be a fine opportunity to hear some currently unheard material.

Where to see them: Maggie Mae’s (Mar 17)


Who: Fierce and fiery punk from Norway.

What to expect: cuts from ‘Empire Records’ EP will no doubt spark a riotous response from their already devoted fan base

Where to see them: Lucille (Mar 16), Maggie Mae’s (Mar 17)

Tei Shi

Who: Inventive indie/R&B by way of Argentina.

What to expect: New material varies from laidback pop to pile-driving electro bangers (‘Keep Running’) – all thrilling, of course.

Where to see them: Cheer Up Charlie’s (Mar 15)

The Big Moon

Who: Four-piece indie group ready to be 2017’s breakout British export.

What to expect: We’ve heard plenty of their upcoming album ‘Love In The 4th Dimension’, but prepare for some unheard but equally brilliant newbies to come your way.

Where to see them: Mohawk Outdoor (Mar 15), Latitude 30 (Mar 16)

The Japanese House

Who: Sleek, introverted and emotional pop from endlessly talented Amber Bain.

What to expect: She supported label mates The 1975 on their arena tour last year, so expect a more intimate showing this time round, which may even bring some new material.

Where to see them: Radio Day Stage (Mar 15), Latitude 30 (Mar 17)


Who: Self-anointed grunge’N’B duo Drew Love and Dante Jones from Los Angeles.

What to expect: Their debut album ‘Nü Religion: Hyena‘ was indeed a blend of R&B, indie, grunge and more – so even if you’re on the fence, there will certainly be something in the mix for everyone.

Where to see them: Ibiza (Mar 15), Easy Tiger (Mar 16), Buffalo Billiards (Mar 17)