Full Course Ahead: ACL weekend

October 6, 2010

For the thousands of local Austinites and music lovers from around the country, this ACL weekend seems to be shaping up pretty nicely.

Out of the Austin City Limits lineup, there are the typical, huge main headliners such as The Eagles, Phish and Muse. We then have the returning veterans of the festival such as The Flaming Lips, M.I.A., LCD Soundsystem and Band of Horses. But, this year there is also tons of big-name, first time offenders such as The Strokes, Sonic Youth, Spoon, and Mosters of Folk.

Whatever your musical tastes might be, this year’s ACL goers sure do have a big plate in front of them. If totally overwhelmed by indecision, let these recommendations guide you:

The Mountain Goats: Playing Friday, Oct. 8 at 2:00PM on the Budweiser Stage

The Mountain Goats are one of those bands that are known to make indie-rock fans drool. Over the past 10 years, singer-songwriter, John Darnielle, has transformed his solo acoustic Lo-fi recordings, into a full band that is now more polished and does studio recordings. The early gritty sound of Darnielle’s raw emotion is whats given The Mountain Goats their huge fan base. In 2006, Paste Magazine deemed Darnielle as one of their “100 best living songwriters”. If this award doesn’t speak enough on the merits of The Mountain Goats, check them out yourself- but really listen to them.  Its the content of the songs that provides a refreshing taste of acoustic folk music, but also sets The Mountain Goats apart from every other “singer with a guitar”.

The Black Lips: Playing Sat. Oct, 9 at 3:30 PM on the SYNC Card Stage

Drunk? Wacky? Young? Bored? Fed up? Whatever you are, you will love the Black Lips. Though a far cry from what punk-rock was, the Black Lips maintain a “I don’t give a shit” attitude that still translates to a generation of rowdy kids. This 4 piece band from Atlanta mixes psychedelic, surf rock, and sounds of the blues to come out with mumbled lyrics and catchy guitar riffs. Not your cup of tea? Just check their single “Bad Kids” for a taste of one of their more poppy tunes.



Ted Leo + Pharmacists: Playing Sun. Oct, 10 at 2:30 PM on the Budweiser Stage


Ted Leo and the Pharmacists, are another band that have been around for just over 10 years but somehow seem to always fly under the radar. Combining elements of several different genres, Ted Leo and his Pharmacists will prescribe your ears an adrenaline inducing concoction of punk and rock & roll music. Bombarded by a wall of rhythmic creativity, every audience member will leave the event with a feeling of youthful energy that will instill  even that back-of-the-crowd accompanying parent with a nostalgic sense of yore.




Photo Credits: Jay Janner/Austin American-Statesman, Steven Dewall,


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