My first preconceived idea of the Austin City Limits Music Festival was one of pure excitement and one of pure fear. I didn’t know what to expect and so prepared for the worst.
I was told it would be hot, loud and that I would need to ice my legs after standing for hours. I also was informed there would be tons of drugs, and I would be patted down every time I walked into the festival, whether I wanted to or not.
Nonetheless, I expected to have a blast.
The line-up for the day consisted of Meg Myers, Nate Ruess, Royal Blood, Billy Idol, George Ezra, and Disclosure. Going into the day I expected my top pick to either be Billy Idol or George Ezra.
However, I discovered someone I had never even heard of before, Moon Taxi. A group of five guys who rocked out and had a blast doing it! Their songs were energetic, fun and great for throwing your hands in the air. So overall pick for day 1 was definitely Moon Taxi.
All-in-all: Moon Taxi, where have you been my whole life!
The line up going into day two was a little smaller. I didn’t know a ton of the bands playing, but got a chance to see some pretty remarkable talent. I planned on seeing FIDLAR, Milo Greene, School of Rock, Twenty One Pilots and José González.
My top pick prediction for Saturday was José González and let me tell you, he did not disappoint. González hosted a stunning show, with great vocals and fantastic finger-picking patterns. He sounded identical to his records, and that is something extremely difficult to perfect.
All-in-all: José González for the win!
The third and final up had to be the most jam-packed with music and people at the festival. Day three consisted of the headliners for the weekend and awesome openers throughout the day.
The line up for day three consisted of Daughter, BØRNS, Sylvan Esso, Ben Howard, Vance Joy, Alt-J and The Weekend.
I got to the park around 11 a.m. and prepared to set up camp and wait for Daughter to play at 1:30 p.m., but got the opportunity to hear another weekend underdog, Marian Hill.
This three-person group had an awesome sound and gave a great show to last me until Daughter, so I was pleased nonetheless.
Daughter, of course, was a great and powerful performance with chilling lyrics and gorgeous guitar playing.
Vance Joy was another of my top bands of the weekend and he played a chill show with easy tunes and uplifting beats. Even though he may have messed up a bit in his act, he powered through like a pro and I respect the guy for finishing strong.
However, Sylvan Esso had technical difficulties and the lead singer proceeded to tell underwater sea jokes…bless her heart. I felt so bad for them, but when things got up and running, they put on a great rest of their show with the time they had left.
The Weeknd, even though I wasn’t a huge fan, put on a visually epic show, consisting of fireworks and retro backdrops. The music sounds the same to me, but people love him so they must be doing something right. Keep it up?
In summary: ACL was probably the most incredible weekend of my life! There was more music in one concentrated place at one time than I could have ever imagined and gorgeous weather with awesome people. I will definitely be returning to ACL and hopefully visiting another music festival soon…Coachella or Lollapalooza if I had my way.
FAVORITE PERFORMANCE: JOSÉ GONZÁLEZ. You sir are the greatest!
BIGGEST UNDERDOG: MOON TAXI. I’m now a fan!
WEIRDEST PERFORMANCE: BØRNS… you. are. one. weird. dude.
BIGGEST LETDOWN: GEORGE EZRA. All of your stuff sounds like Budapest.