ACL Fest 2015 Saturday Listings

Blurbs on the hour

William Clark Green

12:30pm, Austin Ventures stage
East Texas singer-songwriter William Clark Green's Texas country sound bears the markings of his roots and teenage years spent in College Station. Although fourth LP Ringling Road adopts the good ol' boy aesthetic, the April release rings truer than most of his affected accent contemporaries. – Abby Johnston

Echosmith
Echosmith

Echosmith

12:45pm, Samsung Galaxy stage
As Eighties pop continues to beguile a new generation, acts like this band of California siblings proliferate. 2013 debut LP Talking Dreams proves a bright dose of catchy bittersweetness, exemplified by double-platinum single "Cool Kids" and a degree of craft that belies the members' relative youth. – Michael Toland

San Fermin

1:30pm, Miller Lite stage
San Fermin's eponymous 2013 debut gave compelling voice to composer Ellis Ludwig-Leone's elaborate chamber pop, anchored by the female constituents of Lucius and the boozy baritone of Allen Tate. The latter returned for this year's Jackrabbit, with Charlene Kaye now playing counter, the eightpiece now jelling less Sufjan and more Dirty Projectors. – Doug Freeman

Father John Misty

2:20pm, Honda stage
Josh Tillman's alter ego struck as an irony-tinged, postmodern indie crooner with 2012 debut Fear Fun, but a strange thing happened on the way to this year's sophomore LP, I Love You, Honeybear. Tillman's caustic apathy revealed instead a brutally honest self-awareness in his deadpan ballads of modern love and angst, a vulnerable but cathartic performance that emerges equally ambivalent onstage in his nonchalant gyrations. – Doug Freeman

Vince Staples

2:30pm, Austin Ventures stage
This summer's proper full-length debut, Summertime '06, found Long Beach, Calif., MC Vince Staples printing contemporary chapter and verse scripture in a lesson-filled tome of trial, tribulation, and redemption written for those surviving in today's darkest valleys. Equal loads of trepidation and greatness, Staples toes the line in detailing inner-city existence, using a fresh perspective and updated imagery. – Kahron Spearman

Houndmouth

3:30pm, Austin Ventures stage
March sophomore stunner Little Neon Limelight showcased versatility with an eclectic mix of harmony-braised roots ballads that positioned this Indiana quartet at the top of emerging Americana acts. From Katie Toupin's twanging vox ("Gasoline") to raucous rockabilly ("15 Years"), Houndmouth shifts effortlessly through Southern soul ("Honey Slider"), stomping folk-pop ("Sedona"), and Dylan-esque reels ("For No One"). – Doug Freeman

Misterwives

3:30pm, HomeAway stage
Mandy Lee initially conceptualized her NYC project Misterwives as an Eighties cover band. While the Reagan era impacts synth-rock debut Our Own House, this band is one radio hit and major festival set away from the next level. – Michael Toland

Sturgill Simpson

4:20pm, Honda stage
Sturgill Simpson doesn't give a damn about saving country music, despite the mantle being continually placed upon him following last year's breakout sophomore LP, Metamodern Sounds in Country Music. Recently capturing Artist and Song of the Year honors at the Americana Music Awards, the Kentuckian's Waylon Jennings drawl and expansive scope in sound and sentiment paves a path of new progressive country. – Doug Freeman

Walk the Moon

5:20pm, Miller Lite stage
After this Cincinnati quartet played ACL Fest in 2013, both its neo-New Wave aesthetic and Top 5 hit "Shut Up and Dance" conquered radio. No wonder: The ubiquitous dork-done-good anthem, like its attendant LP Talking Is Hard, remains an irresistible festival bounce. – Michael Toland

Rayland Baxter

6:30pm, BMI stage
Son of multi-instrumentalist Bucky Baxter (Bob Dylan, Steve Earle, Ryan Adams), Rayland Baxter just issued his second disc, Imaginary Man. Nothing intangible about the Nashville singer-songwriter's twanging songs of the South, whose characters reverberate in a folkish vibe that's occasionally swampy and always melodic. – Jim Caligiuri

A$AP Rocky
A$AP Rocky

A$AP Rocky

6:30pm, Samsung Galaxy stage
On January 18, A$AP Yams, founder of New York's A$AP Mob and musical father figure to the crew's top star, A$AP Rocky, died of a drug overdose. The Harlem MC, born Rakim Mayers, mourned in private, but At.Long.Last.A$AP (RCA) offers candid insight to his grief. Danger Mouse-produced centerpiece "Pharsyde" goes deep on the gentrification on his native hood. – Luke Winkie

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