16 Experimentalists to Help You Get Weird at SXSW


Byrke Lou

Wed. 13, Las Perlas, 10:30pm
Like the flash lives of cybernetic circuitry hatched by Louis and Bebe Barron of Forbidden Planet fame, physicist and artist Byrke Lou, based in Berlin, detects inorganic structures in code, modifying them during live sessions after scanning rotating black glass sculptures via video feeds into her made-from-scratch synthesis system. The resulting sound compositions vary from total abstractions to faint traces of dance anthems.

Lingua Ignota

Thu. 14, Central Presbyterian Church, 7:45pm
Known for leaving audience members in tears, classically trained Kristin Hayter's ritualistic performances recast extreme music's patriarchal violence into haunting liturgies saturated with suffering that give space for survivors to exorcise their pain. Originally self-released by the Providence-based artist, All Bitches Die reissues on Profound Lore with an intensely dynamic album featuring Aileen Wuornos and informed by visionary Hildegaard of Bingen.

Fond Han

Thu. 14, 720 Club Patio, 7:45pm
Though the art-rock ensemble recently emigrated from New Jersey, Fond Han's beautifully hideous hard-psych skronk fits like a glove in St. Louis, home of Yowie, Grand Ulena, Drunks with Guns, and other members of the musical lunatic fringe. Led by Thomas Baumann, Fond Han carries the torch by, naturally, breaking all the old rules and writing new ones.

Black Taffy

Thu. 14, Scratchouse, 8pm
Donovan Jones overlaps repetitive beats of shiny hi-hats and thumping bass drums with dusty tape loops of kotos, harps, and other stringed instruments, which the North Texan explicitly prescribes for therapeutic purposes. On Elder Mantis, the stark arrangements warble toward wonder and light trance, while the melodies spiral into decay.


Thu. 14, Cheer Up Charlies Inside, 1am
From her command center in Bilbao, Spain, Izaskun González augments a live drum kit with virtual software, kicking Krupa to the moon and taking the next giant step for drumkind. On her recent Shush, a vibrant, pointillistic ecosystem of rhythm and color swirls and swims. Bricks of intensive editing whiz by in the orbital upbeat BPM bounce.


Fri. 15, Hideout, 8pm
Psychoacoustic explorer Aurélie Ferrière went aboard the Fleur de Passion – a sailboat gellin' like Magellan on a four-year Pacific voyage – to collect over- and underwater recordings, including unmapped areas of the Bismarck Sea. The tonemeister integrated and edited the recordings into a sound installation containing far more adventure than any of those tattered old Thor Heyerdahl paperbacks.

Gong Gong Gong

Fri. 15, Hotel Vegas Annex, 11pm; Sat. 16, 720 Club, 12mid
Getting down to brass tacks in Beijing, Joshua Frank and Tom Ng harness guitars as simple engines of rock & roll horsepower that blur across intercontinental tracks toward what the duo calls phantom rhythms. Their propulsion dances to the beat of Bo Diddley, the Monks, West African guitar, and maybe Indonesian gamelan.


Fri. 15, Elysium, 1am
The eclectic noise-rock trio from planet Kero Kero landed on this big blue ball in 1997 with no prior musical experience. They then launched neuron-rich masterpieces produced by Japan's inimitable Hoppy Kamiyama that shock, charge, jolt, and electrify. If each subgenre of rock is a strand of hair, then Ex-Girl is the Van de Graaff generator that makes 'em all stand on end.

Kapil Seshasayee

Sat. 16, Hideout, 8pm
This Glaswegian singer-songwriter navigates his vocals down seemingly circuitous routes into unanticipated detours before suddenly snapping back into pop conventions. Considering the unwritten Indian caste system a Sacred Bore, Seshasayee works his album around that theme and consequent frustrations, with a waterphone scraped for eerie effect. Easter egg surprises enhance the arrangements, à la Scott Walker's Bish Bosch.


Ra: Path of the Sun God

Wed. 13, AFS Cinema, 5:30pm
Stacked Holodeck of electronic artists (Majeure, Curved Light, True Creature) score Lesley Keen's neon animation of the birth of the world.


Wed. 13, Hideout, 1am
Those pining for autumnal, ambient doom, look no further than Denmark's ZRN, short for Zeroine.

Nolan Potter's Nightmare Band

Thu. 14, Hotel Vegas Annex, 8:15pm
Ian Anderson never had close to this much fun.

Jojo Abot

Thu. 14, Flamingo Cantina, 11pm; Fri. 15, Palm Door on Sixth Patio, 10:30pm; Sat. 16, Highland Lounge, TBA
Splitting time between Accra, Copenhagen, and NYC, Abot explores identity through genre fluidity and performance art.


Thu. 14, Hideout, 12mid
Carly Bond's smooth sailing Strange Life is but a dream.

Nanook of the North

Fri. 15, Hideout, 12mid
Stefan Wesolowski on violin and piano and Piotr Kalinski on synths live score the 1922 film.

Der Kindestod

Fri. 15, Main II, 12:10am
Industrial noise from San Antonio pricks with pins and needles, asbestos and ice picks.

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