Levitation Grids Announced
Psych fest’s return comes into full focus
By Kevin Curtin,
1:25PM, Wed. Feb. 7, 2018
With the emergence of Levitation’s second wave lineup, highlighted by appearances from the Make-Up, Russian Circles, Ariel Pink, Bedouine, and Diiv, the restructured return of Texas’ premier psychedelic music gathering comes into full focus.
What more, today’s announcement provides a grid of the individually ticketed club shows so fans can begin planning which bands they’ll catch April 26-29.
Effectively, fest headliners are garage rock giant Ty Segall (at Stubb’s Thu. and Barracuda Fri.), UK doom metal rarity Electric Wizard (Fri., Stubb’s), shoegaze heroes Slowdive (Sat., Stubb’s), industrial crushers Ministry (Sat., Emo’s), psych punks Oh Sees (Sat. at Barracuda), and festival hosts the Black Angels (Sun. at Stubb’s). Positively un-psychedelic soul punks the Make-Up (Saturday at Cheer Up Charlies) represent increased diversity among Levitation’s curating.
The shows are now sold entirely à la carte, with ticket prices largely ranging from $15-45. Some of the concerts are staggered so that patrons can attend more than one per night.
The running total of 68 acts represents a slightly lower artist number than the fest had in its biggest years at Carson Creek Ranch. Levitation business director Johnny Sarkis notes it’s “all killer, no filler” and that there’s “no bands playing a shitty 2pm slot to nobody” like they would at an outdoor gathering. Saturday’s shows amount to roughly 6,800 potential tickets, which isn’t far off from the event’s outdoor attendance.
The new model, following a severe weather cancellation in 2016 and a year off in 2017, arrives as Austin’s most sprawling club-based festival not named South by Southwest. That method somewhat protects organizers from spring rain and, more so, utilizes Austin’s vibrant venue ecosystem, which usually means better production and cheaper beers than what you’d get at a traditional festival.
Levitation’s core team remains Black Angels members Christian Bland and Alex Maas, primary booker Rob Fitzpatrick, and multimedia specialist James Oswald. Sarkis joined as business director last year.
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Levitation 2018, Austin Psych Fest, Black Angels, Johnny Sarkis, Rob Fitzpatrick, Alex Mass, Christian Bland, James Oswald, Make-Up, Russian Circles, Ariel Pink, Bedouine, Ty Segall, Electric Wizard, Ministry, Thee Oh Sees