Welcome to the Jungle: Guns N’ Roses Will Headline ACL Fest 2019
Plus Childish Gambino, Billie Eilish, Cardi B, the Cure, and Mumford
By Kevin Curtin,
10:01AM, Tue. Apr. 30, 2019
Austin’s most anticipated, prognosticated, and deliberated annual festival announcement materialized this morning. Guns N’ Roses, Childish Gambino, Mumford & Sons, the Cure, Billie Eilish, Tame Impala, Cardi B, and Robyn top the poster this year.
GNR’s confirmation prefaces the first local appearance by the Sunset Strip bad boys since slithering into the Frank Erwin Center in February 1993. ACL’s booking of another metal heritage headliner follows last year’s appearance by onetime GNR tour-mates Metallica. Following decades of inconsistency, the group has proved solid since group leader Axl Rose reconvened with Slash and Duff McKagan in 2016 – as evidenced by a lights-out showing that year at Cowboys Stadium.
Childish Gambino, aka actor Donald Glover, punches his rain check after last year’s late-breaking cancellation on account of a foot injury. The “This is America” rapper/singer, who flirted with live performance retirement, headlined Coachella earlier this month. Meanwhile, the sleepy, angsty, mood-pop of Billie Eilish personifies the zeitgeist of American music in 2019, currently holding two Top 10 singles and racking over 1 billion Spotify streams.
Powerful singer/rapper/dancer Lizzo and pop-country star Kacey Musgraves further represent music-of-the-now at ACL. Also on deck for the double-weekend fest, running Oct. 4-6 and Oct. 11-13 throughout the Great Lawn of Zilker Park, are Jack White’s recently reformed wild bunch the Raconteurs, Radiohead frontman Thom Yorke focusing on solo album Tomorrow’s Modern Boxes, singer/rapper Lil Uzi Vert, and trap poet 21 Savage.
Meanwhile, underground music fans will flip over UK jazz-tronica trio The Comet Is Coming, emotionally intense rapper Denzel Curry, country/folk songwriter Tyler Childers, and ultra creative singer/rapper Duckwrth.
Shoo-in Gary Clark Jr. leads a list of Austin-based acts, including Black Pistol Fire, Abhi the Nomad, Blackillac, Otis the Destroyer, Jane Ellen Bryant, Alesia Lani, Kady Rain, and Asleep at the Wheel.
Much of the local talent, as usual, is divided up over the two weekends. For many attendees, the deciding factors will be queen of the Bronx Cardi B, who plays only Weekend One, and Swedish siren Robyn, who appears on Weekend Two. Yola, the emergent UK roots singer with the voice of a legend, also slots as a Weekend Two exclusive. Tickets for ACL Fest, running $260 for a weekend pass and $105 for single-day entrance, are on sale now. Here’s the new poster.