Recommended Live Music for the Weekend

When the summer slows down, the live music starts to heat up.

Rap and electronica from Ski Mask The Slump God and Sigala highlight Friday while Saturday electrifies with post punk and powerhouse rock by Poster Children and South San Gabriel.


Ski Mask The Slump God

Empire Control Room
Fri., August 10, 8pm

Trying to rap along to Stokeley Goulbourne is a fool’s errand. Some of the sharpest, most elastic flow in hip-hop, the 22-year-old South Florida MC fits more syllables into one measure than most can manage in a bar. Where his peers jumble rhymes over distorted trap beats, XXL’s Hip-Hop Freshman Class 2018 member conducts a refreshing emphasis in word play, carrying the torch of lyrical luminaries before from Eminem to Busta Rhymes. – Jeremy Steinberger


Fri., August 10, 9pm

Standing behind a cluster of filters and knobs, Bruce Fielder preps his forthcoming Brighter Days, 16 tracks referencing euphoric house, vamped funk shuffles, and syncopated dancehall. The UK producer’s debut brims with native chart toppers and Gold-certified cuts, including the Nile Rodgers-assisted “Give Me Your Love,” house throwback “Sweet Lovin’,” Jackson 5 sampler “Easy Love,” and Mariah Carey mash-up “Say You Do.” – Alejandra Ramirez

Jess Marchant, Daphne tunes

Fri., August 10, 9pm

NYC-via-Montreal troubadour Jesse Marchant ditched his JBM stage name for a self-titled 2014 release, revitalizing distinctly tranquil folk-rock. The singer’s fourth album, Illusion of Love, drapes his weathered baritone over atmospheric synth for pensive, lovelorn output. Former Growl frontman Santiago Dietche opens under indie-pop moniker Daphne Tunes, adorned by his band’s mellow, upbeat backing. Latest “Turn” offers a comfortingly warm, guitar-led slow dance. – Rachel Rascoe

Koke Fest

Hutto Park on Brushy Creek
Fri.-Sat., August 10-11, 9pm

KOKE-FM remains the soundtrack to Austin’s progressive country movement of the Seventies, so when the frequency resurrected in 2012, it spliced a decidedly Texas ethos into country radio. Now, KOKE Fest trends behind Lone Star heavy hitters, including resurgent Underdog Aaron Watson and Nineties hitmaker Mark Chesnutt on Friday, and the Josh Abbott Band and Wade Bowen on Saturday. Whiskey Myers and a host of rising Texas country kickers round out the weekend. – Doug Freeman


The Electric Church
Fri., August 10, 9pm

Psychedelia goes to church. Forming here as a rock trio in middle school, Mamalarky’s since broken into the L.A. indie scene with 2018 EP Fundamental Thrive Hive, a colorful soundscape textured in jazz piano, blues drums, and psych-pop melodies. – Jeremy Steinberger


Acid Carousel

The Electric Church
Sat., August 11, 9pm

Acid Carousel, a kaleidoscopic pop sevenpiece from Dallas, rolls its participatory set to town. Musicians switch off instruments between themselves and crowd, and one can add percussion or simply dance onstage, whatever keeps the jam going. – Jeremy Steinberger


Empire Control Room
Sat., August 11, 9pm

Jack Aisher began with a tropical rendition of Daft Punk’s ubiquitous single “Get Lucky.” Five years after the SoundCloud upload, the London producer paid his dues on sun-kissed debut EP Drop Out (2014), a Summer Never Ends electronica series, and copious remixes ranging from Snoop Dogg, Felix Cartal, and George Maple. A new, five-track deep house exploration ranges from chic club funk “Get Down” to minimalist “Fever.” – Alejandra Ramirez

Poster Children, The Zoltars, Paperback

Sat., August 11, 9pm

Born 1987, Poster Children injected social and political commentary into jangling post-punk. Given the current political climate, the Champaign, Ill., quartet regrouped for the angry, witty Grand Bargain!, their first LP in 14 years. Having not played Austin since 2002, the Children will surely whip up a storm of brittle guitar and sardonic diatribes. Locals the Zoltars and Paperback open. – Michael Toland

South San Gabriel

Sat., August 11, 9pm

Keeping up with Will Johnson is a full-time job. Even with indie powerhouse Centro-matic on ice, the lonesome road balladeer continues to cast his yearning, scratchy drawl and stinging guitar across numerous projects, most recently teaming with Justin Peter Kinkel-Schuster as Marie/Lepanto and this year’s Tenkiller. Johnson resurrects his rootsier quintet South San Gabriel for three Texas dates, adding local atmospheric folk duo Little Mazarn. – Doug Freeman

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Live Music, Ski Mask The Slump God, Sigala, Jesse Marchant, Daphne Tunes, Aaron Watson, Mark Chesnutt, Josh Abbott Band, Wade Bowen, Mamalarky, Acid Carousel, JackLNDN, Poster Children, Zoltars, South San Gabriel

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