By Victoria Patneaude
Needless to say, Texas is a rather large state. One that produces many things: Every fried food imaginable, great football players, amazing actors and actresses and of course, wonderful musicians. It shouldn’t surprise anyone that there is a smorgasbord of great music out there. The only problem is that it has been lost in the cracks due to the high supply of musical talent this state produces. So, ORANGE took the time to search those crevices and bring you a few bands that you should take some time to listen to.
Who better to start off a list of Texas bands to know other than a band considered by Margaret Moser of The Austin Chronicle to be at the forefront of the Austin music movement. This indie electro-pop act serves up beats are infectious in the same way that popular hits on the radio are today, but it sounds nothing like what we have been force fed by the likes of MTV. Even music magazines like Alternative Press have recognized them on their list of 100 Bands to Know in 2012.
Garnering such high praise isn’t all the boys of SPEAK are good at. They also rock at booking national tours, multiple sets during South by Southwest and even a gig during the Formula 1 Fan Fest. Having kept busy, the boys record while on tour and in their free time, promising When Rock Edition during the week long SXSW festival, that fans would definitely have new music to listen to. Until 2013 though, listeners can rest assure that they can just pop in the band’s 2011 release ‘I Believe In Everything’ to get their SPEAK fix. If that isn’t enough though, they often play shows in the Austin area. Having seen them once before and witnessing their upbeat stage presence firsthand, this is one band you don’t want to miss.
Made up of two University of Texas members — well, one UT graduate and one current student — Jeremy Burchard and Jennica Scott met in Longhorn band. After Scott reached out to Burchard, the two got together to record some covers and the rest is history. They’ve come far from posting covers to YouTube though, having released an album produced by Blue October’s Matt Noveskey in July. The venture, which was backed by money donated from friends, family and fans through the website Kickstarter, garnered attention from Foley Entertainment founder Gene Foley who said, “Moonlight Social is the real deal. The writing, musicianship and vocals are all outstanding. These songs are as strong as anything on the radio. This is clearly an artist worth your time and attention.” Best labeled as an alt-country act, Moonlight Social caters to many audiences and is most certainly worth the listen. As another band that can be found around the city playing shows, Moonlight Social gives a live performance that does not disappoint and most certainly shows the promise this young band has.
Folk Family Revival
This self-proclaimed Americana-country-folk calls Magnolia their home. Folk Family Revival sounds like one would imagine they would from their name, except better. They fit the bill as folk quite well, producing some of the cleanest and best sounding folk sounds out there. This is the type of band that should open for Mumford & Sons, The Head and the Heart, Stephen Kellogg & the Sixers and Ray LaMontagne. Consisting of three brothers and a close family friend, who according to the band’s Facebook is considered as one of their brothers anyway, the band has been busy touring Texas. From playing alongside the frontman of Swtichfoot to performing at Texas A&M’s ring ceremony, Folk Family Revival have been busy getting their name out there. Come 2013, they’ll have the Steamboat Music Festival in Colorado under their belts and to be honest, it’ll probably just be the beginning for the group. Catch them now while they’re so readily available to Texas, because they probably won’t be for long.
Listen to: “Addicted to the Road” off their self-titled 2011 release.
For those with a penchant for loud guitars, screaming vocals, chest thumping bass and bone shaking drums, look no further than Houston’s own Myka, Relocate. Countering the unclean vocals with solid pop-rock ones, this post-hardcore band produces music that is at the same level as groups such as Asking Alexandria and We Came As Romans — both bands that, funnily enough, Myka, Relovate have performed alongside. What makes this band even more impressive, aside from the multiple tours they’ve done, the bands they’ve performed with and the music festivals they’ve played? The fact that they’ve managed to achieve all this while being unsigned. The band is gearing up for a short December tour across Louisiana, Texas, Oklahoma, Arkansas and Missouri to close out the year and post-hardcore fans should definitely hop on the chance of catching them on it. These boys don’t disappoint and bring a fire back into the genre that is seen few and far between.
Listen to: The track “Darker,” set for a full-length release.