Mobley has already established himself as the musical phenomena driving the new wave of the Austin music scene. The one-man band sensation has cultivated his sound that continues to alludes any genre definition. Mobley’s latest project, Fresh Lies Vol. 1, is the beginning of a long, personal journey to be released April 27th.
Culture Wars left Austin in want after their Stubb’s performance this past Thursday with The Lagoons. The concert was a brilliant display of rock & roll that held the audience captive within the unusual sound and stage presence of Culture Wars. If their SXSW performance is going to be anything like their Thursday night’s show, you, as a music lover, are obligated to see them.
Cue the Sun!, Austin’s up and coming alternative pop band, has made quite an entrance into the music scene. Released on February 2nd, their EP, Dreams, boasts heartwarming lyrical integrity, clean harmonies, catchy synths, and powerful melodies that channel an almost nostalgic boyband feel (think The 1975 meets Owl City meets Walk the Moon).
Having previously released their hit single “Your Love“, in 2017, Cue the Sun! is looking to develop their sound and obtain greater exposure; and I can honestly say, the band did just that.
The album seamlessly encapsulates all the nuances of pop while maintaining a distinctive edginess that allows the band to grow with the unpredictability of the music scene. Aside from a well-produced EP, the most important concept that Cue the Sun!, Ryan White and Josh Holder, want to portray is the love and appreciation they have towards their fans.
“This EP is dedicated to YOU. This listener. Chase your dreams, fall in love, walk through trials, come out stronger” – (Cue the Sun!).
Cue the Sun! genuinely want you to channel your best self while listening to their music, a reality that in today’s ephemeral, materialistic society is almost obsolete.
“I never said to look to me to be the one that you rely on. And I know you wonder why I let you come so far; you won’t believe me if I tell you.” -Mobley/Tell You 
“The song deals with what happens when the passion of a grand romantic gesture has faded and what’s left is the hard work of making a life together,” Mobley spilled over to us on the release date of his latest single, Tell You. A sister song of his previous original single, Tell Me, this song continues a career long story that has slowly built up from one single to the next–starting all the way back in 2015, with Swoon.
I don’t know when or how it happened, but the live music experience has changed. The warmth that used to fill venues, a tangible energy that bubbled and blossomed in the bonds made between strangers, has been replaced by a prickly and sticky heat that exerts itself in the form of cranky elbows to the ribs and an unspoken agreement not to interact with those around you (unless they have a doobie you’re trying to sneak a puff of). Maybe it’s just that we are the first generation that values the video—the tangible evidence of attendance—more than the experience itself, and this means audiences are never fully present, their experience mediated and dampened by the screen held in front of their first. I fear that this loss of this vitality is symptomatic of a larger (and unnerving) societal trend of people growing apart from one another, too invested in hollow interactions mediated by a vacuous internet to interact and engage with other humans in the real world. It is depressing to think that the venues where I grew up (in both literal and figurative senses) and which hold my fondest memories might one day be obsolete, replaced by videos and virtual reality, but I would prefer that than to see the state of live music continue its current trajectory and end up void of all meaning.
Or so I thought.
If any readers regularly follow On Vinyl’s Vinyl List, it will already be blindingly obvious that my own passion for music stems from and resides somewhere in the capability to create entire worlds for an audience to imagine, to inhabit and (ideally) to learn from. These worlds can be based in mood, shepherding listeners and eliciting particular emotions, or they can be based in thought and wonder, transporting listeners to a place that feels almost-physical. The best music, I would argue, is that which combines the somatic and the spiritual, carefully constructing a soundscape and a corporeal experience that appeals to both.
With their upcoming LP Oceansoft, Wonderbitch have committed mind and soul to creating this all-encompassing musical experience for their listeners through a modern reimagining of 1980s new wave synth-pop that they affectionately deem “new yacht rock.” The transportive nature of their music is both physical and temporal, their shiny blend of new whisking listeners away to “an alternate dimension 1980s where money doesn’t matter and nature is taking over civilization,” and what an adventure it is.
In the wake of the Las Vegas music festival shooting, the deadliest mass shooting in modern US history, Austin City Limits brought together legendary performers from all generations and proved that people will not be intimidated from coming together to enjoy music because of evil in the world. Boasting performances from Jay Z, the XX, Solange, Ice Cube, Martin Garrix, The Killers, The Gorillaz, The Red Hot Chili Peppers, Chance the Rapper, and more the festival drew fans from around the world to Zilker Park. However, this festival also showcased more than a dozen local Austin groups and musicians. Below I highlight the profiles of 10 local musicians and groups that played for Austin City Limits.